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CLARK HUTCHINSON

Indo-Prog/Raga Rock • United Kingdom


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1970 A = MH2
1970 Retribution
1971 Gestalt

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Blues/GestaltBlues/Gestalt
WALHALLA
Audio CD$23.75
$31.34 (used)
GestaltGestalt
Import · Limited Edition
Repertoire 2005
Audio CD$8.45
$5.97 (used)
RetributionRetribution
Import
Repertoire 2002
Audio CD$32.74 (used)
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CLARK HUTCHINSON discography


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CLARK HUTCHINSON top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.84 | 26 ratings
A=mh2
1969
3.19 | 8 ratings
Retribution
1970
2.88 | 8 ratings
Gestalt
1971
3.12 | 6 ratings
Blues
1994

CLARK HUTCHINSON Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

CLARK HUTCHINSON Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

CLARK HUTCHINSON Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.92 | 3 ratings
Free to Be Stoned: Complete Decca Recordings
2010

CLARK HUTCHINSON Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

CLARK HUTCHINSON Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 A=mh2 by CLARK HUTCHINSON album cover Studio Album, 1969
3.84 | 26 ratings

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A=mh2
Clark Hutchinson Indo-Prog/Raga Rock

Review by Master of Time

4 stars What we have here is basically an in-studio jam session between Andy Clark and Mick Hutchinson. It starts off with improvisations on a modal scale, which is my favorite track on the album. The song is just a big musical build up adding certain parts as it goes. On paper it seems that it would get boring at its longish length but it works well. It is a very upbeat song and It features some of Andy Clark's great saxophone work, and it's probably the best showcase for him on this album that is very dominated by Mick Hutchinson. The three songs making up the middle section of the album seem to blend together and aren't as interesting. Acapulco Gold is just guitar. It's very mellow and quite well done but is also boring, as are the other to songs to follow. Impromptu in E Minor shows off the psychedelic influences, but is my least favorite track. Textures in 3/4 features more saxophone but in this song it is quieter and more mellow. The album fortunately ends on a strong note with Improvisations on and Indian Scale. This is raga with psychedelic influences and done quite well. Fantastic song and shows how great Andy Clark Mick Hutchinson work together.

Improvisation's on a modal scale ***** Acapulco Gold **1/2 Impromptu in E Minor ** Textures in 3/4 *** Improvisations on an Indian Scale ***** Overall: ****

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 A=mh2 by CLARK HUTCHINSON album cover Studio Album, 1969
3.84 | 26 ratings

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A=mh2
Clark Hutchinson Indo-Prog/Raga Rock

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

3 stars An album based around a very simple formula: Andy Clark plays a catchy psychedelic tune and guitarist Mick Hutchinson plays raga-inspired solos over it. As far as formulas go, it works pretty well, and the pair seemed to be bringing in a wide range of influences - as on the opening track Improvisation On a Modal Scale, in which Andy Clark's jaunty rhythm for the backing track seems to take in a swinging sort of jazz influence on the one hand and a hard funk vibe on the other. However, the songwriting chops of the pair hadn't quite developed to the point where they could turn adequate improvisations into stellar compositions, and the album ultimately seems to explore its own little musical cul-de-sac without making any great advances. It's no waste of time to give this one a listen, or even several, but it's not so good that you ought to go out of your way to track it down.

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 Free to Be Stoned: Complete Decca Recordings  by CLARK HUTCHINSON album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2010
3.92 | 3 ratings

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Free to Be Stoned: Complete Decca Recordings
Clark Hutchinson Indo-Prog/Raga Rock

Review by beebfader

4 stars Like WOW man!, 23 Jun 2010

This review is from: Free To Be Stoned-The Complete Decca Recordings Anthology (Audio CD Esoteric 2010)

I think Mark Powell from Esoteric Records must have grown up in a record shop, and not just any old record shop, but one which stocked every single long forgotten obscurity from the golden age of the underground and beyond. I have a wide knowledge of this era and I had never HEARD of these guys before chancing upon a copy and being intrigued enough to investigate. The title's great too !

This value 2CD set actually covers three complete albums made at the cusp of the seventies. Mick Hutchison is a shockingly talented guitarist and his partner Andy Clark covers a multitude of instruments as well as his main focus which is keyboards (could he be the same Andy Clark who ended up in Be-Bop Deluxe ? We need to know).

The 1969 album A=MH2 is entirely instrumental and can loosley be described as `raga- rock'. It is no surprise that they were at the centre of the Ladbroke Grove scene, and could be seen alongside Pink Fairies, Edgar Broughton, Third Ear Band and Hawkwind probably most days of the week somewhere on or off the planet in those heady times. Hutchinson's strident and inventive lead guitar is one thing, but nothing can prepare you for the incredible picking abilities displayed on `Acapulco Gold'. On other pieces he solos over Clarke's droning monk-like vocals, piano and Van Der Graaf style sax interjections. It's quite unlike anything I've ever heard. It was championed at the time by John Peel and it certainly conjures up images of Sunday afternoons with joss-sticks, tea and perhaps if you were lucky...a little Acapulco Gold.

Album number two (split between two CD's here) sees a total transformation into a four piece with the addition of bass and drums and crazed vocals from Clark. "I just want to be stoned for the rest of my natural life" he declares like a man with a plan. You can almost SEE the clouds of smoke and lank hair flying around from here in the 21st century. Once again and throughout the album Hutchinson's corruscating guitar soloing raises this above the ordinary and with a much more solid backing from a rhythm section, this really takes off. A very strong album indeed.

Their final offering perhaps suffers a little from too much emphasis on vocals (which in truth become wearing after a while) and less extended material, covering 11 shorter songs, but the guitar playing still shines (particularly a stunning acoustic performance on `Boat In The Morning Mist') There is somewhat of an element of despair underlying this album though....maybe being stoned every day was not the greatest idea after all. After this it seemed that was it...whilst the others formed the equally obscure `Upp', Hutchinson left the business to become a guitar teacher...a job he was drastically overqualified for, but no doubt there was rent to be paid.

On the whole there is much to enjoyed here, and yet again hats off to Esoteric for making this available. So much amazing music was made in such a short time in the late sixties and early seventies, that one could not possibly have had the hours in the day to hear even the tip of the iceberg even if they were lucky enough to live through it. It is great that time and well preserved tape allow us the luxury to look back on an amazing era and appreciate those whose time in the sun was brief but totally worthwhile.

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 A=mh2 by CLARK HUTCHINSON album cover Studio Album, 1969
3.84 | 26 ratings

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A=mh2
Clark Hutchinson Indo-Prog/Raga Rock

Review by Kazuhiro
Prog Reviewer

3 stars The diversification included at the time of the latter half of the 60's and the field of the forward music included the flow of an original groping by each musician and experimental directionality indeed.

Especially, flow of a certain kind of main current that method and age of expression of music by active musician and band at this time had. The item of psychedelic and Blues Rock might have established a multipronged flow. And, various bands and musicians exchange it. And, it is guessed that directionality and groping for the music at which oneself should aim continued.

The music character at which this DUO had especially aimed in those situations and the flows of the activity might have been experimentally done by deriving a multipronged element of psychedelic and Blues Rock from the part in the main current that was. The part is mirror to this album well.

The music character that this DUO gave in the situation of the music that derives gradually in the 70's and results will be recognized to the listener as one proof by the development of the music character that has already been cultivated.

Andy Clark known by having participated in the work of Sam Apple Pie takes charge of various musical instruments in this album. And, it is said that this debut album by Mick Hutchinson who was the member of Sam Gopal Dream of the antecedent of Sam Gopal was exactly made from their experimental part and session. It is said that they had already produced the sound source before this debut album is announced according to a certain theory. There is a theory that says that only Germany was sales it. The sound source that they had already produced as a guess is not certain corresponding to the album that is called "Blues" put on the market in 1994.

Directionality of Blues Rock and psychedelic of their having already had them establish it at this time. And, the tune is composed in demonstrating musical instruments that they introduced by the recording to its maximum and it is partial of the idea. Flavor of Raga Rock included in original tune produced with them and progress of Chord.

They might have attempted the establishment of the music character that had to be aimed gradually by this album. Andy Clark and Bass player's Stephen Amazing shifted to "UPP" later as a well-known fact about this DUO. The activity of "Clark-Hutchinson" is neither on the way will not be nor a street point of their development though those activities developed further. The establishment of the music character including the age and the construction of the tune with the unique aspect are indeed expressed well. It is expressed enough by this album.

"Improvisation On A Modal Scale" is a tune that contains the element of psychedelic and Heavy Blues Rock. Riff of the unison with Sax and the guitar makes a little aggressive melody. The rhythm of the percussion instrument in close relation to there puts out a good flavor. It is possible to improve it as a composition in which not the performance of a simple band but musical instruments and melodies are emphasized. Melody of guitar to emphasize part of psychedelic. And, the melody and the dash feeling with the piano have an original composition.

"Acapulco Gold" is a tune where the performance of Mick Hutchinson shines. The performance done only with the guitar is a melody with expression of feelings. The flow of the melody that recollects the music of Spain expands the width of this album. It can exactly enjoy a technical part of Mick Hutchinson.

A repeated melody by Chord of the guitar and a piano melody indeed give "Impromptu In E Minor" the part of psychedelic. The rhythm of the percussion instrument that makes the atmosphere of the tune as much as possible also contributes to the tune. And, Solo of the guitar in close relation to complete Chord produces a little aggressive sound. Or, the chorus of the solemnity of the tune in the latter half also expands the atmosphere of the tune.

The melody of good Sax for an enchantment rhythm section twines round "Textures In 3/4". The melody of psychedelic and Raga Rock that the melody of the continuing guitar is good is put. The construction of the melody in close relation to the rhythm of three rhythms exactly makes a good flow. The tune shifts to a more chaotic part in the latter half. The construction of the sound with various musical instruments is splendid.

As for "Improvisation On An Indian Scale", the melody and the music scale of complete Raga Rock twine round the rhythm section where the dash feeling exists. The part where Raga Rock is good might be exactly emphasized. Repeated length and rhythm and melody give the gaga expression.

The construction of the music character at which they should aim is exactly expressed enough by this album. Element of psychedelic and Blues Rock. And, the fusion of included Raga Rock might be one established music.

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 A=mh2 by CLARK HUTCHINSON album cover Studio Album, 1969
3.84 | 26 ratings

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A=mh2
Clark Hutchinson Indo-Prog/Raga Rock

Review by stefro
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Vastly superior to this duo's other two releases - the messy 'Gestalt' and the underwhelming 'Retribution' - 'A=,MH2' is a truely psychedelic, late-1960's Indian/Raga/psych/folk/prog marathon that finds an almost perfect balance between the east and the west, the raga and the rock, and the calm and the crazed. Made up of multi-instrumentalist Andy Clark and guitar-virtuoso Mick Hutchinson, the aptly-named 'Clark Hutchinson' met sometime during the 1960's when both musicians could be found in the underground group Sam Gopal Dream. From the sound of their music it seems likely that the twosome might have been fond of the odd herbal-or-psychotropic tipple, and after the demise of the oddly-monikered Sam Gopal Dream, the duo decided to pair-up and explore the sounds of India and beyond, merging those exotic sounds with a western 'rock' dynamic. So far, so pretty high-minded and Hippie-dippie. But hey, it was a different time back then, and it sounded good. Unbelievebly, experimentation was the creative watchword at the tail end of the sixties/beginning of the 1970's, and any musicians trying this sort of thing in 2010 would be instantly straightjacketed 'World Music'. Clark Hutchinson may have had lofty ambitions and seriously leftfield practices, but they also had immense talent and, dare we say it, foresight into the natural progressive arc of rock music(!). Along with fellow brits Jade Warrior, who produced three excellent oriental-tinged prog/folk/rock albums at around the same time, Clark Hutchinson were part of a small niche of artists who eschewed the bluesy or the overtly-progressive in favour of casting their sonic nets to lands farther afield. 'A+MH2' is possibly the apex of the genre - strong words, I know - because it positively drips with an earthy authenticity that truly places this album as lovingly-crafted epoch to the now stereotypical sitar-and-tabla drenched style of Indian music. It's also a damn good LP. It's easy to see where modern groups such as San Francisco's mind-melting psych-rockers Wooden Shjips(the 'j' is deliberate) get their epic, motorik-grooved and deeply trippy soundscapes from, and from start-to-finish the whole album reverberates with cosmic bliss for those in love with the psychedelic side of psych/rock. Without a doubt, one of the trippiest albums from the trippiest period in modern music. And that's no mean thing. STEFAN TURNER, LONDON, 2010

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 A=mh2 by CLARK HUTCHINSON album cover Studio Album, 1969
3.84 | 26 ratings

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A=mh2
Clark Hutchinson Indo-Prog/Raga Rock

Review by Marty McFly
Special Collaborator Errors and Omissions Team

3 stars And last genre to visit, indo-prog, raga rock. But sad thing is that right after listening another new genre, Zeuhl. OK, this can't be compared, so I'll try to be correct. I have to admit that I both don't like this kind of music ("yet" maybe), nor see much prog things in it. It sounds little bit like psychedelic rock, it's also trying to be hypnotic, but not so successfully.

But to the music. Basic foundation is something like ambient guitar riff and (as first and last track announces) improvisation. Because it's rock with India influences, I suppose that this oriental melody is it. Quite nice though, I always liked it. But sadly, it's so slow and can't catch my attention. Not that slow things are bad, this is quite boring for me. Maybe it IS me who's wrong, but for now, I feel it that way (for late changes of mind are there edit buttons).

Music without voice, guitar solos over and over again. But this guitar is so magical at times. But mostly, it's not so good, just tracks 1 and 5 sounds very good. Therefore, 3(+) stars.

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 A=mh2 by CLARK HUTCHINSON album cover Studio Album, 1969
3.84 | 26 ratings

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A=mh2
Clark Hutchinson Indo-Prog/Raga Rock

Review by Xanthous

5 stars A Great Listen For Anyone That Likes Traditional Indian Or Spanish Music.

1). The first track of the album, "Improvisation On A Modal Scale" is the only track on this album that isn't a stand-out. I can't really will myself to listen the whole way through but it is still a decent songs. 3/5.

2). "Acapulco Gold" the second track on this album is aptly titled. My best description for it is Gold. Acapulco Gold is a solo guitar piece that catches interest in the first seconds. A lot of imagery comes out of the sound of the guitar. Whenever I listen to it I feel like I'm walking through an arid desert. It is very Spanish sounding and is a song I'm always coming back to listen to. 5/5.

3). "Impromptu In "E" Minor" is another great song. On this track there are two main components. The Guitar and the Piano. A steady drum beat ties down the Guitar and Piano soloing throughout the song.The Fuzzed-out Guitar ,Gritty Piano, and Acoustic Guitar makes this track a very interesting listen. This and Acapulco Gold are easily my favorite songs on the album. 5/5.

4). Another great surprise is, "Textures In 3/4". Starting out with some saxophone the song gets better in better as it goes on. After around two minutes an inspired guitar solo kicks in. It will be very hard for most to stop listening at this point. The guitar sucks you in in a way I haven't felt on many other songs. 5/5.

5). "Improvisation On An Indian Scale" is a slight let down for me. The last three were perfection in my opinion and this ones sits slightly lower than the others for me. It is still layered with great guitar work and improvisations on this one but it doesn't catch my interest all too much. 4/5.

Overall this is a great album to have for anyone new to the Indo-Prog/Raga-Rock section of music. The whole album is an interesting experience but there a few flaws that keep from qualifying this as essential. If you ever get the chance to listen to this album take it. You won't be disappointed.

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 Blues by CLARK HUTCHINSON album cover Studio Album, 1994
3.12 | 6 ratings

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Blues
Clark Hutchinson Indo-Prog/Raga Rock

Review by Eetu Pellonpää
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars This album contains the early material of Clark Hutchinson recorded before their 1969 released "A=mh2" album. I must underline that this record doesn't have such progressive nor psychedelic qualities than the record mentioned, providing them the augmented status among the avant-garde rock legacy. But this album is still very fine class rootsy blues rock, flowing with clean and pleasant sound of feelings, and wrapped inside really beautiful gatefold covers. If you are not allergic to white 1960's blues jamming, then this record is certainly a good candidate for your listening pleasure, and especially as for an addition to your collection of LP vinyls. Their boogie reminds little the early sounds of The Allman Brother's Band, though the improvisations here don't escape as far as on the live gigs of the group mentioned.

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 A=mh2 by CLARK HUTCHINSON album cover Studio Album, 1969
3.84 | 26 ratings

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A=mh2
Clark Hutchinson Indo-Prog/Raga Rock

Review by philippe
Special Collaborator Content Development & Krautrock Team

5 stars A fantasist and amazing musical essay for brilliant electric guitar solos, raga-psych and bluesy rock. Without any doubt the best release from Mick Hutchinson / Andy Clark collaboration. "A=mh2" is covered by gorgeous improvised guitar parts in a rather technical style. Hutchinson's guitar inspiration is accompanied by acoustic percussions, sometimes punctuated by piano / flute arrangements. "Improvisation on an Indian Scale" culminates the album: an extended 13 minutes improvisation for an intense fuzzy-folky-raga incantation. The guitar solo section is sustained by a solid rhythmical guitar / percussion accompaniement. The leading theme is played by furious, trance-like and cyclical" electric guitar solos: an almost "esoteric" sounding jam. "Acapulco Gold" is an electro-acoustic dominated guitar composition with a nice, catchy sense of "introspection" and some furious "flamenco" like accents. The jazzy and groovy "Improvisation on a Modal Scale" is the least interesting moment despite really nice guitar sections. "Impromptu in 'E' Minor" is a gentle folky improvisation around the piano and some obsessive guitar sequences. "Textures in 3/4" features an almost "Celtic", folkish guitar improvisation with a definitely cool electric melody. A rarity and really impressive, inspired late 60's project, historically speaking this is a must have!

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 A=mh2 by CLARK HUTCHINSON album cover Studio Album, 1969
3.84 | 26 ratings

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A=mh2
Clark Hutchinson Indo-Prog/Raga Rock

Review by mystic fred
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

5 stars A=mh2 = magic!

Two musicians, Andy Clarke and Mick Hutchinson, recorded this album in two twelve hour sessions, playing all instruments between them including bass, keyboards, rhythm and lead guitar and various percussion instruments, and as the sleeve notes stress, " no technical wizardry or trickery", meaning good old fashioned musicianship! Many influences on this their first album such as flamenco guitar, "raga" style and various ethnic rhythms all work together creating a very interesting listen. All are technical masterpieces, though by today's standards they may sound somewhat basic, and only using an eight track recording studio. For 1969 made very interesting listening as eastern music was very popular then.

"Improvisation on a Modal Scale" - improvisation is the word here, some excellent guitar soloing over a repeated theme as in most of the tracks here followed by the beautiful "Acapulco Gold" which features some masterly flamenco style "slightly amplified" guitar playing, the sleeve notes strongly state "no double tracking" - ok i believe them!.

"Impromptu in E Minor" crashes in, a rather Bolero style beat overplayed with a rather tinny sounding rhythm guitar and piano, followed by distorted lead guitar solo, leading up to that Bolero-style build up complete with male voice choir! I like it.

"Textures in 3/4" begins with a rather native american style intro using drum and maraccas, introducing a sax solo with flutes which build into a very pleasant piece, interspersed with lead guitar and piano solos creating a distinctly eastern- style hypnotic effect, leading up to the longest track on the album "Improvisation on an Indian Scale" which seems to attract the most attention to this album, it is 13.5 minutes of eastern magic, very popular music at the time, and according to the sleeve notes "brings forth some of the most skilful intricate and fastest guitar work ever put to disc.." i won't dispute that as there is some fine playing on this album which would interest musicians or simply the curious, but may be lost on those less interested in musicianship but those who just like to hear a good song. 37 years on this does sound rather simple to modern ears but i enjoy the album immensely and would recommend it as a very interesting piece of early, though unusual progressive music, and considering the many styles and influences contained therein i'll give it five - an essential addition!

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