Various Artists - New Rubbles Vol.2 (Speaking My Mind) (Music CD)

Release Date: 06 July 2009
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According to the cover copy, this disc is "a collection of some of the rarest U.K. psych/prog singles," but if you're more interested in psychedelia than progressive rock, you may be a bit disappointed. During the early days of the prog rock movement, the dividing line between prog and psych wasn't especially broad, and most of the music on Speaking My Mind: New Rubble, Vol. 2 owes a much stronger allegiance to the smart and tricky side of the equation rather than the bent and trippy, even as it struggles to straddle the line. There are a few tracks here that reveal a decided lysergic bent, most notably "Yes, I Need Someone" by Eire Apparent (featuring some guitar licks from their producer Jimi Hendrix) and "Hammerhead" by Rare Bird, but the majority of these tunes reflect the chops-intensive discipline of prog than the open border explorations of psych, and some songs clearly point to the dawning of the hard rock scene that would in time evolve into heavy metal (such as "Baby Come On" by Opus and "Meaning of Love" by Putney Bridge). More importantly, while the 18 songs featured here are certainly rare enough, there isn't much here that sounds like a lost classic awaiting rediscovery, and the jazz-influenced rhythms of Nancy's "Hesitatin'" and the polished pop craft of "I'm Alone Today" by the Fruit Machine suggest failed stabs at Tin Pan Alley hitmaking more than signs of inspiration from struggling visionaries. Devotees of the more curious avenues of British rock of the late '60s and early '70s might find Speaking My Mind worth investigating, but it's a long way from essential listening. (Consumer's note: the press sheet included with review copies of this album credit Nick Saloman of the Bevis Frond as the compiler of the disc, but the liner notes cite Jamie Romer, one of Saloman's associates at Psychic Circle Records, instead.) ~ Mark Deming
Release Date: 06 July 2009

1. Dragon Child.
2. It's Only Words
3. Taiconderoga
4. Yes I Need Someone
5. Squadron Leader Johnson
6. Q111
7. Do You Ever Think
8. Magic Potion
9. Hesitatin'
10. Doctor Nero
11. Traveller Man
12. Baby Come On
13. Meaning of Love
14. I'm Alone Today
15. Keep Out I'm Dying
16. Let Me Down
17. Hammerhead
18. Who Can I Trust

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Catalogue No: PAPRCD2066