Stegzy's Music Project

A commentary on Stegzy's album collection

Heart Still Beating – Roxy Music [#574]

Roxy_Music-Heart_Still_BeatingBryan Ferry and chums sleaze their way through an hour and 8 minutes of live music recorded in Frejus, France, 1982.

This is Roxy Music’s third live album complete with saxophone fellatio from Andy Mackay and guitar wanking from Phil Manzanera though surprisingly it was not released until 1990.

I think by this time Ferry’s pals had had enough of the whole lounge lizard vibe and were starting to look at future career prospects. Indeed, the album Avalon, the promotional tour from which Heart Still Beating is a recording, was to be the band’s last. Although technically, they did what most successful bands do and they did release several live and best of compilations after. Indeed, Ferry had only just got started and he wanted to stay afloat and even at the grand old age of 71 (at time of press) Ferry still oozes across the stage with his performances like some leery lecherous old granddad who’s got his eye on your twenty-year-old daughter. And not just for the job as his secretary.

Heart Still Beating as an album covers a nice range of Roxy Music’s work while also focusing on their more relatively modern love songs compared to their saxophone riddled earlier works. A good start for those unaware of Roxy Music’s historical bag of tricks and those wanting to see what that old rascal Ferry has to offer.

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For Your Pleasure – Roxy Music [#485]

Roxy_Music_-_For_Your_PleasureRoxy Music’s second studio album brought to me by a hard drive dump from a former work colleague.

When I obtained this album, I was at a point in my life where my interest in Roxy Music consisted of Flesh and Blood, a live video of Bryan Ferry in concert and a selection of the band’s Best of albums. So having heard tracks from this album such as Do the Strand and In Every Dream Home a Heartache ad nauseam from my prior trove, it’s no surprise that this album gets little in the way of air time through my collection.

Shame really, some good music on it.

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Flesh & Blood – Roxy Music [#481]

Flesh_and_Blood_album_cover-1In an effort to destroy good music, my eldest brother made me a copy of this on a home taped cassette. If he hadn’t perhaps the music industry would still be around today.

At the time of the cassettes issue, I was in my late teens and my main interest, as for most boys, was girls. Sarah Bamber was the then girl of my dreams but my interest was spurned regularly. So, like all good teen boys, I found solace by moping about listening to music, an activity spearheaded by the music of Chris Isaak and this album.

Songs from the album such as Oh Yeah and Running Wild featured heavily in my life soundtrack of the time. I still remember trying to garner attention by listening to the album sat on the veranda at Keswick Youth Hostel during a walking holiday with the church choir.

As I grew older and I realised that a moody male attitude alone didn’t get you laid. Nor did an interest in an American guitarist (Isaak) or a wrinkly lothario and his band. My appreciation of Flesh and Blood waned and the album became just another in my vast collection. Indeed, Sarah’s interest only piqued when I became unavailable and she later ended up having a brief fling with who she thought was my best friend as a way of getting back at me
for spurning her affections. Oh how I laughed as he drew her into his own world of despair, womanising and mysogyny.

This is Roxy Music’s seventh studio album and was my introduction to Bryan Ferry and Roxy Music and originally featured on the B side of a 90 minute cassette with the A side consisting of a collection of songs by The Tubes.  Happily I now own the full album on digital media.

Which is a good thing as since home taping killed music.

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Dune – OST [#401]

Screen Shot 2015-09-14 at 20.20.28The beginning is a very delicate time. Know then that it is the year 2015, and I’m still only a hundred albums shy of being a third of the way through this music project.

Dune is a very special film and soundtrack for me. My oldest brother used to scoff that I couldn’t possibly have understood the concepts dealt with by the film, especially as Lynch’s version was edited to bits. The weird thing is, I got Lynch from a very early age. In fact, I got Dune on a deeper level through the film than I ever did with the novel. I think Lynch did a bloody good job making a sci-fi snob’s book accessible to many people.

My oldest brother repeatedly tried to “explain” his interpretation of the novel to me, but he had no need as I already understood what the author was trying to say. I understood the hidden depths, the concept of the Kwisatz Haderach, the Fremen and what the spice really was. Even the trope of the sandworms.

The film is also important to me because of how the music actually makes a good accompaniment in the way that Queen’s soundtrack to Flash Gordon makes Flash Gordon what it is. Toto do an outstanding job of the soundtrack especially considering their only other significant contribution to the soundtrack of my life is their hit song Africa and Brian Eno’s atmospherics also add to the whole parcel of the film.

Soundtracks for Lynch’s films appear several times in this music project but if asked to save one from deletion it would definitely be the soundtrack for Dune. A film that still sends shivers down my spine and, in some respects, seen by many as a premonition/allegory/parable for the events in Syria, Iraq and the Middle East as we live right now and, I believe, has been since it was written.

 

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Country Life – Roxy Music [#315]

Roxy_Music-Country_LifeBryan Ferry greases his way through 42 minutes of butteresque songs.

This is Roxy Music’s fourth studio album and has a number of memorable tracks that regularly feature on “Best of” and compilation albums.

Probably most noted for the rather raunchy album cover, Country Life has been described as the zenith of British art rock.

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Concerto – Roxy Music [#300]

Roxy_Music-ConcertoI had hoped that the three hundredth album in this project would have been a monumental one. Sadly it’s another best of/Live/compilation. It’s like all the albums this month have been compilations. I know they haven’t but it really seems like to be a successful musician you have to write about 20 songs on about 3 albums then release best ofs, lives and cover version albums for a few years then make a come back or reform.

Bryan Ferry is the master of come back. Concerto is the twenty somethingth release by Roxy Music and the sixth live album by the band. It is also noted for the fact that it was released in 2001 and is a recording of a concert in performed in Denver made in 1979.

Talk about milking your back catalogue and fans for everything they have!

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Boys and Girls – Bryan Ferry (#217)

Boys and Girls - Bryan FerryBoys and Girls – Bryan Ferry

Boys and Girls comprises of the majority of the songs on the New Town video. The New Town video was a pivotal item of media in my youth. I watched agog at Bryan Ferry sleezing his way across the stage oozing sleeziness in nice shoes and a sweat drenched white shirt and thought….”Hey, if I wear white shirts, sweat a lot and look sleezy I’ll get all the girls gushing”.

Of course, I was wrong. Girls only gushed for grotty looking goth and rocker types. I was, as usual, ten years behind my peers in many respects and yet millennia ahead in others.

Boys and Girls is a nice break from the Roxy Music years for Ferry. I think it begins to establish him as a solo artist quite well in a distinct style and sound that he retired several years later to release bollocks music that basically saw him disappear into a cloud of self importance and political buffoonery.

See. See what trying to be cool does to people? Turns them into dickheads. Hipsters be warned.

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Bête Noire – Byran Ferry (#178)

Bête Noire - Byran FerryBête Noire – Byran Ferry

At last, our journey through the “best of” has come to an end and the first album we arrive at is Bête Noire by Byran Ferry.

This is Ferry’s seventh solo studio album dating back to 1987. Ferry is still doing his lounge lizard thing but this time he’s seasoning with dark juju. French Afro-Carribean influences percolate through the album like well ground coffee.

Surprisingly, I’ve not listened much to this album. I was bitten by the Ferry bug a few years after this album was released and missed its passing in the shops. In fact it was not until I was making a Ferry compilation for the car that I realised I’d heard many of the tracks before. It’s funny when that happens.  Since then, the album has had a bit more playtime on my iTunes.

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The Best Prog Rock Album in the World…Ever – Various Artists (#176)

The Best Prog Rock Album in the World...Ever - Various Artists (#176)The Best Prog Rock Album in the World…Ever – Various Artists 

This is one of the last CDs I bought. A wicked compilation showcasing a massive range of prog bands covering Canterbury scene, Zappa and even the first sprouts of New Romanticism.

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#111 – Avalon – Roxy Music

Screen Shot 2014-08-17 at 18.34.49Avalon – Roxy Music

If you survived the brain mashing of the last two Les Joyaux de la Princesse, albums you’ll be pleased to know they won’t resurface until we get to C.

Like a refreshing aural drink, Bryan Ferry oozes cool swarveness through your speakers and leads you into a seedy world of lounge bars, loafers and broken hearts.

I’ve got a thing for Bryan Ferry’s Roxy Music work. It just sounds and feels so sophisticated. Like a white suit and black shirt on the morning after a rather sensational party when you have stayed up all night with a bottle of Bolly stinking of tobacco and still not pulled the foxy chick who may or may not be a high class prozzie dressed in a red short dress.

Avalon is no exception. Listen to it, let it seduce you, have its wicked way with you and leave you with a feeling like you’ve just been used by some knob head in a white suit who stinks of cigarettes, has a nasty rash and is carrying a bottle of Bolly with some Asti decanted into it…..

 

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Album #82 – Apollo: Atmospheres and Soundtracks – Brian Eno

Screen Shot 2014-06-10 at 16.28.45 Apollo: Atmospheres and Soundtracks – Brian Eno

Ah coffee table albums. Bit like coffee table books. The kind of music brought out at middle class dinner parties to wow and seem hip and in touch with culture.

It’s mostly bollocks.

Like me ,you’ve probably got several coffee table albums in your own personal collections. Such as David Grey, Buena Vista Social Club, War of the Worlds and anything by Adele. Brian Eno is the reigning emperor of coffee table music.

This album consists of music and soundscapes that wouldn’t be out of place in a chapel of eternal rest or that place they send off Edward G Robinson in Soylent Green. 

Not for me. It’s a little too hip for my liking and pigeon holes the listener into the 30+ bracket. Kind of like how your grandparents were probably listening to James Last around the gramophone.

Tired overplayed coffee table tosh.

 

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