Some composers really deserve their reputation as artists whose fame rests on a single work, but with Holst the popularity of The Planets really has obscured the large quantity of good music he wrote in other forms. Part of the problem also stemmed from his daughter, Imogene, who was severely critical of her father's work and whose baleful influence persists to this day. These three choral ballets contain a large measure of delightful and wholly characteristic music. It's crime that we have had to wait until now for a complete recording of them, and fortunately these performances make a strong case for many more.
It's hard to resist Goose Creek Symphony, an unabashed hillbilly outfit who like to rock a little, mess around with bluegrass, and tell fractured tall tales in a back porch style that falls somewhere between an Appalachian version of the Grateful Dead and Frank Zappa (if Zappa had been raised in Kentucky). Goin' Home might not be as sharp as the group's classic early albums from the 1970s (Established 1970, Words of Earnest), but it shares the same irreverent country joy, and leader (and main songwriter) Charlie Gearheart's odd, sideways view of life is as arresting and infectious as the jaw harp he frequently plays. Among the highlights here are the country funky "Gob Sows," the slow-down plea "Livin' in a Panic," and the bizarre (but totally normal in Goose world) "Say "Hi" to the Toad." Listeners new to the Creek's down-the-holler shenanigans might want to start with the earlier albums, but already converted Gooseheads will no doubt welcome any new installment from this amazingly long-lived band.
Goose Creek Symphony's frontman Charles Gearhart continues his admirable imitation of the Band's warm country-rock on . The opening track, "Gearhart and God," finds the singer good-naturedly pleading with the man upstairs for help writing a song, promising to split the royalties 50/50. The whole album is full of slightly tongue-in-cheek stories about fishin' holes and the good life livin' in the country, each warmly backed by Fred Wise's loose fiddle or the occasional Dixieland/Salvation Army brass band. Similar to a lot of the Grateful Dead's more countrified stuff, these down-home rockers make for great summertime porch music.
Cut from the same cloth as their debut released a year earlier, this collection of songs is not as memorable. Mastermind Charles Gearheart, billed as Ritchie Hart on the first album, sounds more self-conscious here and the yokel factor is higher. The transplanted Arizonian shows his Kentucky roots by covering the Bill Monroe classic "Uncle Pen."
Goose Creek Symphony found its roots in the Phoenix, AZ, area originally as a countrified side project for Richie Hart & the Heart Beats. Vocalist and guitarist Charles Gearheart (aka Richie Hart) spent his childhood "up Goose Creek Hollow" in Floyd County, KY, and when he put together his good-time country-rock group, he drew upon his home's rich musical heritage as well as its name. In 1970, Gearheart and a group of local studio musicians assembled a handful of songs and presented them to Capitol Records. Capitol signed his project, forcing Gearheart to assemble a touring group. Banjo player and fiddler Fred Weisz was brought in to complement existing guitarists Paul Spradlin (listed as "Paul Howard" on the album), Bob Henke ("Williard"), Mike McFadden (following the breakup of his psychedelic group Superfine Dandelion), as well as a rotating cast of bassists and drummers. With a sound very similar to what the Band was doing at the same time, Goose Creek Symphony were rock & rollers who played a very faithful brand of country music, all the while layering rhythms and harmonies along the same lines as Buffalo Springfield and the Grateful Dead. They released albums through the mid-'70s, with that streak ending in a long hiatus from 1976 to 1990, when the group decided to re-form and record again. Their marriage of earthy instrumentation and easygoing vibes have been able to give the group a certain longevity. Into their third decade, Goose Creek Symphony is drawing strong groups of fans to their summer festival appearances, similar to what the Dead and Jimmy Buffett have known.
If the Grateful Dead had come from Kentucky instead of San Francisco, they might have sounded much like these guys. "This song might sound kinda strange, but it's got more soul than Home on the Range," they accurately sing in "Talk About Goose Creek and Other Important Places," an eight-minute psychedelic showstopper complete with Beatles-style tape tricks. This album is a fun listen that can suck even a city slicker into a stoned, good-time, backhills vibe.
Double LP published by Decca in 1976 containing their albums "Mirage" & "The Snow Goose"...
Evolución is the name of a Chilean Progressive rock band. Although founded and active since the Eighties, keyboards player Pedro Muñoz' group had to wait for more than twenty years before its works were eventually published, thanks to the good care of the Musea and Mylodon labels. "La Era De Piscis" is thus a collection of pieces recorded between 1982 and 1986. As for the music, it is halfway between the Progressive rock of Camel ("Music Inspired By The Snow Goose" period) and Eighties-like fusion jazz-rock, the whole with an innate melodic sense. The quality of the whole album is simply so remarkable that you finally wonder why such music was never officially released earlier!
Surviving a shaky decade that produced a couple decent albums and few identity crises, Korn bring it back to basics on their 12th full-length, The Serenity of Suffering. It's both a reminder that Korn are the masters of this particular universe and also fiercely dedicated to its fans. Inasmuch as the Korn faithful are capable of fuzzy feelings, Serenity delivers goose bumps for those who have stuck with the band since the '90s. Diehards will notice that Jonathan Davis and the gang have brought things back to the Issues/Untouchables era – especially on "Take Me" and "Everything Falls Apart" – when Korn perfected the combination of nu-metal brutality, desperate vulnerability, and spook show creepiness (in fact, the Issues doll – now wrapped in stitched-up skin with exposed ribs – makes a prominent appearance on Serenity's album art). Without pandering to career-peak nostalgia, Korn deftly execute all the hallmarks that have come to define their sound.