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Hugh Hopper - 1984 CD (album) cover


Hugh Hopper


Canterbury Scene

3.19 | 35 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
3 stars This was Hugh Hopper's debut album released in 1973. It was inspired by George Orwell's novel of the same name. Hugh became interested in tape loops ten years before this album was created while living with Daevid Allen and Gilli Smythe in Paris. "Daevid had already been exposed to the work of Terry Riley and was producing sound-pieces made up of repeated tape loops". Hugh was just 18 at this time and living outside of England for the first time. Hugh goes on to say: "For the next year or so I carried on assembling my own loop-pieces. Back in Canterbury Pye Hastings lent me his Ferrograph for a while. I tinkered also with eight-millimeter movies, filming Mike Ratledge and my brother Brian being poetic or Robert Wyatt playing trumpet while looning around in a field of yellow flowers. Occasionally when our parents were away on holiday we had Cultural Evenings-tape and movies together !" That's just priceless !

As for this album it has two long pieces that are quite experimental with a lot of tape loops. No melody just sounds. Difficult is the word that comes to mind when listening to these two tracks.The shorter songs were for the guest musicians like John Marshall on drums, Lol Coxhill and Gary Windo on sax, Pye hastings on guitar and a couple of other horn players. They were very much James Brown inspired tracks, in fact Hugh sent James a demo of the piece when he was playing in London as a thankyou.

The shorter tracks move me to give this a 3 star rating, as much as I can appreciate what he was trying to do with the tape loop pieces the enjoyment factor just isn't there for me at all. An interesting release regardless.

Mellotron Storm | 3/5 |


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