Pocket Orchestra - Phoenix (expanded) 2 x CDs

SKU 33-AltrOck 023
This is a reissue of the album Knebnagauje, which was the first-ever release of any material by this unknown and lost avant-garde progressive rock band of the late 1970s into the mid 80s. Finally, 25 years after their dissolution, there was a very limited (500 copies) edition made by the MIO label as their last release, just as the label was shutting down. Many folks had a chance to buy this, but many more were shut out and missed a chance to own this great muscial document. Until now.
The line up of the band consisted on Tim Parr-guitars, Craig Bork-piano, keyboards, Joe Halajan-saxes, clarinets, Bill Johnston-cello, Tim Lyons-bass and Bob Stearman-drums. Pocket Orchestra started off in Phoenix, AZ, where they were pals with the guys in Cartoon (which, btw, is how I knew of them, as Scott Braziel gave me a cassette of some of their work when I met him in 1992 or so and we made several attempts in the late 90s to issue this material, but I was dealing with the wrong ex-members of the group and it didn't work out!).
Moving to Olympia, WA circa 1979, they used the name Knebnagauje and recorded half of the music found on this album. Later moving to San Francisco in 1982 to be with their old pals Cartoon once more, they changed their name to Pocket Orchestra, and recording the other half of this CD. They dissolved in 1983, without having ever released anything and this release, made from the old master tapes which sound surprisingly good and vibrant, is the first time that anyone outside of the band's immediate circle of friends and fans can hear them.
The label compares them to Samla and while I hear that I also hear just as much of a sound sort of bordering on a busier take on early Henry Cow, especially Legend. Sometimes a tad too busy, but it's hard to be critical of something that is this well done and accomplished which never reached anyone, so this still comes very highly recommended.
This includes a Udi Koomran remastered version of the original Knebnagauje abum release and includes a previously unreleased and unheard disc of live material in 'good bootleg' quality. There's a lot of unheard material or expansion of material from the studio tracks here, but honestly, there's nothing here on the live disc that I personally found nearly as compelling as the original studio tracks.
If you didn't move fast enough when the original CD version was available and you don't already own this, then this release is a absolute must-have, but honestly, if you already have this in its previous form, I honestly don't think you need to 'upgrade'.
  • LabelAltrOck
  • UPCALT-023
Your Price $22.00

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