Friday, 31 May 2013

From the Top Drawer LII - Banco de Gaia

Here's an act that doesn't really need an introduction, but here's a brief one from Wikipedia anyway -
'Banco de Gaia is an electronic music band from England, formed in 1989 by Toby Marks (born 1964, South London).
The music of Banco de Gaia is best categorized as ambient dub, but Marks works to cross genres, often using Arabic and Middle Eastern samples against a bass heavy reggae, rock, or trance rhythm to produce deeply textured tracks that progress layer upon layer.'

'Freeform Flutes & Fading Tibetans' is the second of BdG's cassette-only releases in 1992 (although I believe the album got a limited release on CD-R from the BdG website in 2003).

It has never had a proper commercial issue on CD or vinyl because some of the samples used have never got clearance for copyright, but the sound on tape is pretty good and there shouldn't be too many complaints about the overall quality.

Some tracks here will already be familiar to fans since versions of them also appeared on releases such as 1993's 'Desert Wind' EP, the 'Ambient Dub' compilations on Beyond Records and BdG's 1994 debut full-length album 'Maya'.

Side One: Desert Wind / Lai Lah / Soufie / Alpha (Waves All In My Brain)
Side Two: Therapy / Terra Om / Theta / Darkside / Eternal Recurrence

Ripped @320kbps as two side-long tracks
Get it HERE

Banco de Gaia website

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

From the Top Drawer LI - Mandragora

 'Mandragora are a space-rock/world dance-music band from Brighton, England, whose formative output can be described as psychedelic rock with ethnic sounds and tribal rhythms. Formed in 1983, the band have released 5 albums of their own, and a collaborative album with Phil Thornton. They built up a loyal following on the free festival circuit of the 1980s and 1990s, and were signed to Delerium Records. In recent years Mandragora have evolved into a world music/electronic dance act featuring singers and musicians from all corners of the globe.' (Wikipedia)

Although nowadays Mandragora are, as mentioned above, a world dance music act, at the time of this recording they were more of an abstract space-rock outfit featuring the keyboards and synths of 'New Age synth guru' (gulp!) Phil Thorton and the guitar and vocals of founder member Simon Williams, and played many free festivals and gigs on the UK and European underground circuit.
This recording would have taken place in the period between the releases of their 'Over The Moon' and 'Head First' albums.

This is a first generation rip from a tape made by Michael Dog onto a chrome cassette using two PZM microphones fixed high up onto the wall at the back of the main room at Club Dog, then hosted on Friday nights at the Sir George Robey pub in Finsbury Park, London. Quality is very good, with only one cut around the 47 minute mark to accomodate the tape flip.
Sides A & B are joined together as one.

- Tracklisting -
Talking To God
Pendulum & The Pit
Hold On To Our Dream
Rainbow Warrior
Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun
Solstice Song / Yesterdays Tomorrow
Eleanor Rigby
Magic Musick
(Thanks to Pete for track ID)

Date is 1st December 1989 as on the flyer.

Ripped as usual @320 kbps
Get a copy of it HERE

Live in Kharkov, Ukraine 1995