Beyond The Pale Horizon. The British Progressive Pop Songs of 1972

Recorded in 1972. Released in 2021

Is it a “bad” thing to look to better yourself? Should we despise someone who wants to earn more money in a job with more responsibility? Is striving for success a simple way of ensuring a better lifestyle and more approbation?

I once bought a red tie which I took great pleasure in wearing to work. During the 80’s, the colour red was widely associated with the politics of the left. I can remember being on a school trip in France and our coach driver greeting me with “Here he is wearing his communist flag round his neck.” Before one of my many unsuccessful attempts to be promoted to the Senior Management Team of the rather staid school in Hertfordshire where I worked, I decided it would be appropriate to wear this red tie. While I was at it, my smartarse persona took over and I put on some bright red socks. I’m not suggesting that this was the only reason that I didn’t get a promotion that day (or any other day), but it was rather guileless of me. Later in my working life, well meaning colleagues would tell me that the reason I hadn’t risen above the level of middle management was that I hadn’t been prepared to compromise my principles. While I appreciated the sentiments, they were not based on knowing me that well. The reason I spoke my mind, argued with Head Teachers, wrote long negative memos to senior members of staff and wore a red tie to an interview was because I was naïve, unsophisticated and lacking in guile. What will I do next time, now that I know better? Will I be prepared to keep my mouth shut, say and do things that I don’t agree with and ingratiate myself with those people who gave control over my future?

At the same school, I worked with a young teacher called Julia. At the time, Maths teachers were very scarse and anybody who applied for a job was successful. Actually, that’s not true: under previous experience, one applicant listed the number of people he had killed in battle in past incarnations. But Julia had the minimum qualifications and started work as a probationary teacher. This meant that I had to observe her lessons and I clearly remember sitting at the back of a lovely 4th Year (Year 10) to set class, watching her teach very badly and having to strongly resist my inclination to bury my head in my hands. She failed her probationary year and I probably hadn’t supported her as well as I could. There was an occasion when she shouted at me in the quadrangle in the middle of the school, complaining about one of the questions I had put on a revision sheet that I had prepared for her. The question was to evaluate zero to the power zero. Anything to the power zero is one but zero to any power is one so zero to the power zero is either zero or one. It’s a good discussion point but she didn’t like it (or understand the conundrum). Her probation was extended another six months and the advisors from Hertfordshire County Council passed her. She continued at the school, deeply unpopular with her students as she couldn’t control the classes and she was not a good mathematician. On the other hand, she was a huge hit with the PTA which mainly consisted of middle class women with a lot of time on their hands. Julia helped prepare costumes for the productions, appeared in the choruses and was generally mothered by the well meaning parents, one of whom was a governor, often involved in interviewing teachers for promotion. When I left, there were three people who applied for the vacant Head of Department job. Two of them were popular with students, had good discipline in their classrooms and were decent mathematicians. However, Julia got the job. I don’t think she was devious or cunning but she had accidentally stumbled on the key to success at that school at that time. Whether through accident or guile, she had made the right connections with influential people which led to her becoming successful. I didn’t agree with her appointment but I should have learned the lesson that success doesn’t naturally follow from following one’s unthinking natural instincts. Compromise is necessary. One month after starting at my next job I wrote a stroppy memo to the Deputy Head who had been a supporter of mine up until that point. Oh dear. Next time I’ll do better.

The first note on “A Period Of Transition” by Van Morrison is an out of tune grunt. The album was his first for three years and it was eagerly anticipated. It’s uncompromising uniformity of Dr John-influenced soul music led to it being regarded as a low point in his career (but I like it). The opening song, “Something Bigger”, on Villagers new album, “Fever Dreams” is even less tuneful. The opening song on Bob Dylan’s “Self Portrait” is “All The Tired Horses” which features a girl chorus repeating a couplet for three minutes with a cheesy orchestral backing. These are all artists with a vision. I suspect that they were not terribly bothered about the commercial success of these albums but had a musical concept in mind which they were not prepared to dilute simply to become popular.

Wikipedia has an interesting article about “selling out” which it defines as “the compromising of a person’s integrity, morality, authenticity or principles in exchange for personal gain, such as money.” The article goes on to distinguish between a musical act selling out by signing to a major record company or, alternatively, change their sound. In both cases, it is hoped that a wider audience is generated who appreciate the music. A third way of selling out was adopted by The Beatles in 1962 when, on Brian Epstein’s insistence, they cleaned up their stage act, bowing after every number, stopped eating on stage, cut out the swearing and wore expensive suits. Ten years later, John Lennon was to complain that the band were made to sell out but, at the time, he was very keen to become famous and earn good money.

“Beyond The Pale Horizon” is the latest in Grapefruit’s trawl through Progressive Pop music and deals with music released in 1972. I’ve been interested in exploring how far each of these acts was prepared to go in order to reach a wider audience. “Selling out” is seen as a bad thing but if it leads to a lifetime of music making and spreading happiness and enjoyment to a lot of people, it could be seen as a sensible, pragmatic approach. Each of these 65 tracks is a gateway to a story about one or musicians looking to succeed. Sometimes success came through hard work and serendipity; sometimes fate intervened to prevent success; sometimes success was there to be found but foolishness got in the way; sometimes success was achieved in a different medium; at other times success was achieved at a cost to integrity. In most cases, the door to success was perceived to be opened by using the key called ‘change’.

Sometimes this change was deemed necessary due to a lack of commercial success. Sometimes it was from a position of strength, seeking to break new ground, or simply for a laugh. Sometimes it was to fulfill a contract. Sometimes it was due to falling out between members of a band.

“If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.” (Maya Angelou)

Disc 1 Track 1 Theme One by Van Der Graaf Generator

The first music that was ever played on BBC Radio One was an instrumental called “Theme One” which was composed and arranged by Beatles producer, George Martin. This was followed by “Flowers In The Rain” by The Move. Four years later, Van Der Graaf Generator recorded a version (without vocalist Peter Hamill) in an attempt to reach a wider audience. Despite their record company releasing the single in a sleeve which showed the band giving Nazi salutes, the single reached Number One in Italy. Van Der Graaf Generator had just released their fourth album, “Pawn Hearts”, which did not chart in the U.K. and this recording of a well known tune was later adopted by Radio One in three regular slots: the closing down of the station after the John Peel programme every night, the theme to “Sounds Of The Seventies” and the quiz section of Tommy Vance’s “Rock Show”.

Disc 1 Track 2 Virginia Plain by Roxy Music

Roxy Music burst into the public’s consciousness seven weeks after their debut album was released. In the sleevenotes to this compilation, David Wells describes the song as being “as effective a mission statement as any debut single in rock history”. The song includes a fade-in, an abrupt end, no chorus, an oboe and a motorbike recorded in Piccadilly Circus. Lyrically, the song is full of in-jokes. “Make me a deal and make it straight/All signed and sealed, I’ll take it/To Robert E. Lee, I’ll show it” refers to their lawyer who happened to have the same name as the American Confederate general – the one who had a boat named after him in The Band’s “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down”. “Baby Jane’s in Acapulco….Can’t you see that Holzer mane/What’s her name? Virginia Plain” is a reference to the “Warhol superstar”, Baby Jane Holzer who appeared in four of Andy Warhol’s films. Roxy Music were the Martin Peters of glam-rock, being ten years ahead of their time. There was no compromise in their first single which landed on “Top Of The Pops” like a blazing comet in August. As Bryan Ferry sings “Far beyond the pale horizon/Some place near the desert strand/Where my Studebaker takes me/That’s where I’ll take my stand”, he starts a sardonic smile that shows that he is fully aware of the outrageous and alien nature of his music. It wouldn’t take long for other acts to jump on his (Studebaker) band wagon and follow the band into unknown and uninhabited musical lands. Utterly brilliant, uncompromising and imaginative music (that I hated at the time, to my shame).

Disc 1 Track 3 Hold Your Head Up by Argent

“Hold Your Head Up” sold over one million copies and was taken from their third album, “All Together Now”. It was originally circulated to disc jockeys on a three track maxi-single in October 1971 in order to draw attention to its release in February 1972.

Disc 1 Track 4 Here It Comes by Strawbs

Strawbs started life as a bluegrass band but modified their sound to folk-rock, progressive-rock and glam-rock in order to achieve a hit single. “Lay Down” reached Number 12 in the U.K. Charts after an appearance on “Top Of The Pops” in which lead singer wore glitter. Fans of their seminal progressive folk-rock album “Just A Collection Of Antiques And Curios” accused the band of selling out, according to Wikipedia. “Here It Comes” bridges the gap between their cult status and million sellers.

Disc 1 Track 5 Hey Man by Rare Bird

Rare Bird’s first single, “Sympathy”, sold over one million copies worldwide, reaching Number One in Italy and France and Number 27 in the U.K. The group were never as successful again. “Hey Man” is from their third album, “Epic Forest”, named after Epping Forest.

Disc 1 Track 6 The Very First Clown by Shape Of The Rain

The driving force behind Derbyshire based Shape Of The Rain was Keith Riley and not even this wonderful Paul McCartney-influenced song was enough to persuade the record company to finance a second album after their first album was a critical hit but commercial flop.

Disc 1 Track 7 Do Ya by The Move

The Move were a highly successful pop band and Roy Wood wanted the sound of the band to become more underground. Jeff Lynne joined, Carl Wayne left and for a period of time, The Move and ELO co-existed. The magnificently exciting “Do Ya” was a single for both bands and were big US hits in 1972 and 1977 respectively. It’s possibly easier to follow your musical vision if you have a history of commercial success and record companies are likely to anticipate some financial rewards.

Disc 1 Track 8 Into The Country by Byzantium

Byzantium released three well received albums but were never commercially successful. Three of the band went on to hugely successful careers. Shane Fontayne went on to be a member of Bruce Springsteen’s backing band at a time that the E Street Band were disbanded. David Hentschel became a recording engineer on such albums as Elton John’s “Goodbye Yellowbrick Road”. Chaz Jankel became a member of The Blockheads and co-wrote many songs with Ian Dury including “Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll”, “Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick” and “Reasons To Be Cheerful, Part 3”.

Disc 1 Track 9 Isn’t Life Strange by The Moody Blues

Many European countries titled this song “Isn’t Life Strange!” – it’s a long portentous song in which writer John Lodge ruminates on the meaning of life. When you’re one of the most successful bands in the world, it’s hard to keep track of your vision and there’s certainly no need to change your sound to achieve commercial success. The song is from their eighth album and was released at the height of their success, reaching Number 13 in the U.K. Charts.

Disc 1 Track 10 Lovin’ You Ain’t Easy by Pagliaro

Michel Pagliaro had a Number One hit in Quebec with a cover of “Comme D’Habitude”. Fellow Canadian Paul Anka translated the song for Frank Sinatra, calling it “My Way”. In search of more commercial success, he started recording in English and composing perfect Beatles sounding music including “Lovin’ You Ain’t Easy” which reached Number 27 in the U.K. Charts.

Disc 1 Track 11 Once Upon A Time by Rusty

Having relocated to Switzerland to record a Beatles-influenced album, Rusty could not find any company wishing to release it so they licensed their music to a music library, KPM, who have placed “Once Upon A Dream” in video games, documentaries and TV shows such as “The Sweeney” and “Homes Under The Hammer”.

Disc 1 Track 12 Fool About You by Nazareth

“Fool About You” comes from Nazareth’s second album, “Exercises” which was produced by Roy Thomas Baker who would go on to produce several albums by Queen. Finding that the acoustic setting of many of the songs did not reach a wider audience, the band turned to Roger Glover of Deep Purple to produce their follow up album, “Razamanaz”. This album included two Top Ten hits, “Broken Down Angel” and “Bad Bad Boy”, both of which had a harder rock sound with elements of glam-rock.

Disc 1 Track 13 Funny by Open Road

Donovan was living and recording in the USA when he decided to return to the U.K. His manager explained how much tax he would have to pay so Donovan decided to spend a year sailing round the world and performing gigs with a band including bass player Mike Thompson and drummer John Carr. He announced that he was now a member of a band called Open Road. They recorded Donovan’s eighth studio album which was also called “Open Road”. When Donovan gave up on his tax avoidance plan to reunite with Linda Lawrence, the other musicians recruited two other musicians to record two further albums, only one of which was ever released. The charming “Funny” remained unreleased until a few months ago.

Disc 1 Track 14 Keep On Clucking by Stackridge

A familiar story: Stackridge released a number of critically well received but commercially unsuccessful albums. Two of the members went on to have success with a newly formed band (The Korgis).

Disc 1 Track 15 Hamburgers by Rupert Hine

In 1979, Quantum Jump had a Top Five hit with “The Lone Ranger”. Rupert Hine had been trying for success for 14 years by this time. He would later have a highly successful career producing work by Kevin Ayers, The Waterboys and Bob Geldof.

Disc 1 Track 16 Strange People by Eddie Hardin

Eddie Hardin had achieved great success as keyboardist with The Spencer Davis Group and Hardin-York (with drummer Pete York). His voice sounds very similar to Stevie Winwood and it is his lead vocal on the theme tune to ITV’s “Magpie”.

Disc 1 Track 17 Wonderin’ Y by Slade

Ambrose Slade’s first album, “Beginnings” was a commercial flop and new manager Chas Chandler suggested they shorten their name and get skinhead haircuts. A change of label did not do the trick but after growing their hair back and recording a version of “Get Down And Get With It” (popularised by Little Richard), Slade started a hugely successful run of hit singles. Their B sides were often more thoughtful than the one paced feel of the hits and “Wonderin’ Y”, the B side of “Take Me Bak ‘Ome” is excellent, sounding strangely like a great lost John Lennon song.

Disc 1 Track 18 Honaloochie Boogie by Mott The Hoople

After years struggling without success, Mott The Hoople finally attained stardom by embracing glam-rock and recording “All The Young Dudes”. However, the press attributed their success solely to David Bowie’s production. Ian Hunter was determined to prove that they were a good band without their star man and wrote “Honaloochie Boogie” himself. The song (of which this is an early demo) reached Number 12 in 1973.

Disc 1 Track 19 Aristocracy by Caravan

After the disappointing sales of the first two Caravan albums, founding member and organist Dave Sinclair left the band to join fellow Canterbury musician Robert Wyatt in Matching Mole. He was to rejoin and leave Caravan three more times.

Disc 1 Track 20 I Need Your Love Tonight by Nirvana

Patrick Campbell-Lyons moved to London from Ireland and formed Nirvana in 1965. Although “Pentecost Hotel” didn’t chart, “Rainbow Chaser” reached Number 34 in the U.K. Charts in 1967. Patrick Campbell-Lyons could not replicate its success, recording new versions of his 1967 singles along with “I Need Your Love Tonight” on Nirvana’s fifth album, “Songs Of Love And Praise”. Kurt Cobain’s Nirvana paid Patrick Campbell-Lyons $100 000 for the use of their name in 1992.

Disc 1 Track 21 America by Yes

Once Steve Howe and Chris Squire saw Rick Wakeman play organ, they fired Tony Kaye. “America” was a showcase for Rick Wakeman’s virtuoso playing.

Disc 2 Track 1 10538 Overture by The Electric Light Orchestra

Contractual complications forced The Move and The Electric Light Orchestra to co-exist between 1970 and 1972 but soon after the release of “10538 Overture”, Roy Wood left ELO to form Wizzard. At the time he blamed manager Don Arden for producing a poor sound on stage. However, he subsequently asked Don Arden to manage Wizzard. This was six years after Don Arden had marched into Robert Stigwood’s office with a couple of heavies, and threatened to throw him out of his second floor window for trying to steal The Small Faces away from his management company.

Disc 2 Track 2 Little Bit Of Love by Free

Paul Kossoff was a gifted guitarist who died in 1976, aged 26, after suffering drug addiction since the age of 15. Lead singer Paul Rodgers and bassist Andy Fraser had fallen out in 1971 and the band had temporarily split up. However, in order to support Paul Kossoff, the original band reformed in 1972 to record an album, “Free At Last” which included the hit single “Little Bit Of Love”.

Disc 2 Track 3 Lord Of The Ringside by Clown

Based in Plymouth, Clown didn’t have a manager and CBS failed to promote their only release.

Disc 2 Track 4 Sewing Machine by Tuesday

Lead singer Rod Trott achieved no success with his band, Tuesday, so he went on to write hit singles for Cliff Richard

Disc 2 Track 5 Burlesque by Family

“Burlesque” reached Number 12 in the U.K. Charts and came from “Bandstand”, the last Family album to include John Wetton before he joined King Crimson

Disc 2 Track 6 Oh No No No by Silverhead

Michael Des Barres is the 26th Marquis Des Barres. He was born in Hove and went to an Repton, an independent school in Derbyshire. He went to the Corona Acting School in London and appeared as a child in “To Sir With Love”. He gave a private concert to Andrew Lloyd Webber who had seen Ian Gillan (lead singer with Deep Purple) sing the title role in “Jesus Christ Superstar”. This lead to Michael Des Barres being signed to Purple Records where he formed Silverhead with future Blondie bassist Nigel Harrison. Silverhead released two albums and disbanded when Michael Des Barres moved to America where he married Pamela Miller (who wrote about her previous liaisons with Mick Jagger, Jimmy Page, Keith Moon, Noel Redding, Jim Morrison, Chris Hillman, Gram Parsons, Waylon Jennings in her groupie memoir “I’m With The Band”). In the U.S.A. he resumed his acting career appearing in “Mulholland Drive”, “MacGyver” and 100 more TV shows.

Disc 2 Track 7 Traveller In Time by Uriah Heep

Uriah Heep were formed in 1969 and are still together. The only original member still with the group is Mick Box. The band had released three albums which had not sold well when they replaced their bassist and drummer. The subsequent album, “Demons And Wizards” received this favourable review in “Rolling Stone”: “These guys are good. The first side of Demons and Wizards is simply odds-on the finest high energy workout of the year, tying nose and nose with the Blue Öyster Cult…they may have started out as a thoroughly dispensable neo-Cream outfit, but at this point Uriah Heep are shaping up into one hell of a first-rate modern rock band.” “Traveller In Time” tells the story of a cosmic wayfarer who had been born on the Sun.

Disc 2 Track 8 Nobody’s Fool by Cold Turkey

This song was used as the theme tune for the second series of “Budgie”, starring Adam Faith. It was written by Ray Davies and (probably) features ex-Herd lead singer Andy Bown on vocals.

Disc 2 Track 9 Maybe I’m Lost Without You by Neil Harrison

Neil Harrison was born in Liverpool. He formed Driftwood whose 1970 album was produced by Dave Swettenham of Grapefruit (who were heavily promoted by The Beatles at Apple). In 1972, he recorded “Maybe I’m Lost Without You”, on which he sounds exactly like Paul McCartney. In 1979 he joined the cast of “Beatlemania” on the West End Stage. In 1979, he formed The Bootleg Beatles in which he played John Lennon. After 32 years in the role, he stepped down in 2011.

Disc 2 Track 10 Feels Like A Woman by The Troggs

The Troggs had seven Top 30 hits between 1965 and 1967 but none of the 26 singles they subsequently released charted. In an attempt to merge the dirty sounding debauchery of “Wild Thing” with the early heavy-metal sound of Black Sabbath, they employed the latter’s producer Rodger Bain for the B side of “Everything’s Funny” to produce this sensational track. The sleevenotes to “Beyond The Pale Horizon” by David Wells suggest that the lyrics relate to ephebophilia.

Disc 2 Track 11 Birds Must Learn To Fly by Rocky Cabbage

“Eloise” was a huge hit for Barry Ryan in 1968. The song was released as Barry Ryan with The Majority who became Majority One when they relocated to France. The band released singles as Black Label and Rocky Cabbage. Despite their name, this is a beautiful Paul McCartney-soundalike song.

Disc 2 Track 12 King Of Scurf by The Bonzo Dog Band

The album, “Let’s Make Up And Be Friendly”, was recorded after The Bonzo Dog Band had split up but were forced by their record company to fulfill their contract. “King Of Scurf” describes an adolescent boy’s dandruff problems in exquisite detail.

Disc 2 Track 13 All Fall Down by Lindisfarne

From a position as one of the most successful bands in Britain, Alan Hull felt empowered to write a scathing attack on the city planners who were ruining his home town of Newcastle. With lyrics such as “We’ll tear you down, mess you round and bury you deep under the ground and we’ll dance on your graves till the flowers return and the trees tell us secrets that took ages to learn”, it was maybe unsurprising that the single failed to sell.

Disc 2 Track 14 Rise Up by Home

Home consisted of Cliff Williams (who went on to play bass with AC/DC), Laurie Wisefield (who replaced Ted Turner as guitarist in Wishbone Ash), Mick Cook (who later played drums with The Groundhogs) and Mick Stubbs (who sung lead vocals and played electric guitar). “Rise Up” is from their second album, “Home”. Their third (and last) album, “The Alchemist” was released in 1973 and was described as “a work of genius” in “Disc And Music Echo” but was a commercial flop. Mick Stubbs left the band and the others toured as Al Stewart’s backing band before splitting up in 1974. There is no element of glam-rock or heavy metal in this tune – it’s simply a lovely gentle song with exquisite harmonies. A great band who were in the right place but at the wrong time.

Disc 2 Track 15 Dark by Maypole

Taken from the album, “Dark Round The Edges” which was originally released in an edition of 64 copies. Original versions of the album now sell for around £25000.

Disc 2 Track 16 Kum On by Medicine Head

Medicine Head were a duo consisting of John Fiddler and Peter Hope-Evans. After achieving a Top 30 hit with “(And The) Pictures In The Sky”, Peter Hope-Evans left the band and John Fiddler recorded “Kum On” with Keith Relf (ex-The Yardbirds and Renaissance). Their label, John Peel’s “Dandelion”, claimed that this song would be their first Number One. However, it flopped. Their choice of album title was never going to succeed: “Dark Side Of The Moon” also failed to chart. Peter Hope-Evans returned when the band changed labels and in 1973, “One And One Is One” reached Number Three.

Disc 2 Track 17 When The City Sleeps by Bombadil

At the height of their fame, Barclay James Harvest released a single called “Breathless”, credited to Bombadil. The writer of the B side, “When The City Sleeps” was listed as Lester Forest, a reference to the M1 Service Station which the band frequently used.

Disc 2 Track 18 Beachcomber by White Plains

“My Baby Loves Lovin'” had been recorded by The Flower Pot Men before their dissolution. Dick Rowe decided to release the song two years later under the name White Plains. When it became a hit, The Flower Pot Men reformed under the new name and released a single called “Dad You Saved The World” with “Beachcomber” as the B side.

Disc 2 Track 19 Something That You Loved by Pluto

Pluto were starting to make a name for themselves in 1973 when power cuts caused by the miner’s strike meant that many gigs were cancelled and the group disbanded.

Disc 2 Track 20 Blue Suede Shoes Again by Mike Hugg

Mike Hugg wrote the theme tune for “Whatever Happened To The Likely Lads”. He had previously been a member of Manfred Mann and co-wrote the theme tune for “Dear Mother…Love Albert” along with Rodney Bewes.

Disc 2 Track 21 Funeral by Second Hand

Second Hand started as Moving Finger and ended as Chillum but a lack of promotion resulted in all three of their albums being ignored. Whoever wrote the Wikipedia article about them claims that “the band is considered one of the first and most underrated progressive rock bands.” This compilation chooses to end each of its three discs with a song that I don’t like.

Disc 3 Track 1 Whiskey In The Jar by Thin Lizzy

At the end of a recording session for their third album, Thin Lizzy started jamming on a traditional song, made popular by The Dubliners. Their manager suggested that it might make a good B side but it was eventually released as an A side and became a Number One song in Ireland and a Top Ten hit in the U.K. The success of this song catapulted the band to fame after the indifference shown to their early recordings.

Disc 3 Track 2 Paper Plane by Status Quo

“Pictures Of Matchstick Men” had been a Top Ten hit in 1967 but it was only a change of label that resulted in a heavier (some would say “one-paced”) sound. “Paper Plane” was the first of 65 successive hit singles for the band between 1972 and 2010.

Disc 3 Track 3 The Wench by Hello

All members of Hello were 15 or 16 years old when this song was released.

Disc 3 Track 4 One Way Ticket by Curtiss Maldoon

Curtiss Maldoon consisted of Dave Curtiss and Clive Maldoon. Their second album was listed as a solo album by Maldoon. Confused? Me too. Clive Maldoon tried unsuccessfully for another six years to find success but died in 1978 due to complications from prescription medications.

Disc 3 Track 5 Silver Machine by Hawkwind

Lyricist Robert Calvert was sectioned due to his bipolar disorder when the lead vocals for “Silver Machine” were due to be overdubbed from a live performance at The Greasy Truckers Party. Other members of Hawkwind tried it until Lemmy “nailed it in one take or two.

Disc 3 Track 6 Wake Up by Roy Wood

Wizzard, Electric Light Orchestra, The Move and Roy Wood. Bewildering.

Disc 3 Track 7 Take A Load Off Your Feet by Summer Wine

A great cover of a great song from The Beach Boys’ “Surfs Up”. Summer Wine were led by Tony Rivers who sung on the Hallmark label’s sequence of “Top Of The Pops” albums. He went on to be the lead singer in Cliff Richard’s harmony vocal group.

Disc 3 Track 8 Coast To Coast by Trapeze

Glenn Hughes wrote this soulful and melodic song before joining Deep Purple a year later.

Disc 3 Track 9 I Am…I Think by Grobbert & Duff

Kris Gray was released from Borstal in 1972 and recorded this great B side before becoming involved (as a bass guitarist, producer or manager) of Chris Farlowe, Chicken Shack, Edgar Broughton and The Sweet.

Disc 3 Track 10 Rainbow Chasing by Andromeda

Paul Greedus, who wrote this charming song (with Alan Morgan) later translated “A Little Peace”, for Nicole. As “Ein bißchen Frieden”, it had won the Eurovision Song Contest in 1982.

Disc 3 Track 11 The Demon Trucker by Jade Warrior

Jade Warrior’s management company also represented Assagai and when Vertigo records wanted to sign the latter, they were forced to take Jade Warrior on as well. Assagai were one of the first Afro-rock bands and “The Demon Trucker” was an attempt by this London band to make a single which their record company would promote. Sadly, the single wasn’t publicised and the band slumbered for two years before signing with Island where they became much more successful.

Disc 3 Track 12 Everything’s Turning Out Fine by Hobbit

David Mindel, who sung and co-wrote “Everything’s Turning Out Fine”, became a highly successful songwriter, jingle writer and composer of TV and film music. For example, he wrote the theme tune for “Jim’ll Fix It”, which “Time” magazine rated as the 11th greatest TV theme song in the history of British TV.

Disc 3 Track 13 Teddy Boyd’s Rock’n’Roll Show by Atlantis

Atlantis was the one-off name given to Rockin’ Horse who backed Chuck Berry on his 1972 tour.

Disc 3 Track 14 Tigers Will Survive by Plainsong

Iain Matthews had left Fairport Convention in 1969 to form Matthews Southern Comfort. Having toured the USA in 1971 with Richard Thompson and Andy Roberts, he formed Plainsong in 1972. The band folded after releasing one album, “In Search Of Amelia Earhart”.

Disc 3 Track 15 Sarah’s Concern by Curved Air

Singles, “It Happened Today” and “Back Street Luv” reached Numbers 52 and 4 in the U.K. Charts but this unappealing follow up failed to make any impact at all.

Disc 3 Track 16 Taken Alive by Hard Stuff

Lead vocalist Harry “Al” Shaw was removed from photos of the band on their debut LP, “Bulletproof”. John Gustafson went on to join Roxy Music.

Disc 3 Track 17 God Bless The Bride by Kevin Coyne

“Case History”, the album from which this song is taken, was informed by Kevin Coyne’s time working in a psychiatric hospital.

Disc 3 Track 18 Zimmerman Blues by Ralph McTell

Not content with telling homeless people how lucky they are, Ralph McTell decided to give Bob Dylan some advice on this terrible song.

Disc 3 Track 19 And In The Morning by Jake

Jake consisted of Eddie Hardin and Ray Fenwick, both former members of The Spencer Davis Group. Jake only released one single and it’s wonderful.

Disc 3 Track 20 All Alone by Guest & Edwards

Lynton Guest was a member of Love Affair before he teamed up with Jimmy Edwards (no, not that one!) to form a band called English Rose. After releasing a number of singles as a duo, Lynton Guest became a journalist, writing several football books.

Disc 3 Track 21 Noticeingly By by Nimbo

John Wilson was the elder brother of Mari Wilson and after playing in Nimbo, he joined The Average White Band.

Disc 3 Track 22 Mass Debate by Bond & Brown

Pete Brown had been the lyricist for Cream, formed Pete Brown &The Battered Ornaments and Piblokto and went on to write film scripts. Graham Bond had been one of the founding fathers of British R’n’B, but a lack of commercial success and crippling drug addiction resulted in his suicide at Finsbury Park tube station in 1974. Mass Debate is always a funny phrase.

Disc 3 Track 23 Mummy by Patto

Possibly the worst song I’ve ever heard, this song about child abuse by a parent is a terrible way to end a magnificent collection of songs charting the vision, creativity, success and failure of music from 1972.

Published by wilfulsprinter

Music lover

4 thoughts on “Beyond The Pale Horizon. The British Progressive Pop Songs of 1972

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