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For Your Pleasure biography
Out of the omnipresent standard sound of mainstream, hip hop and tekkno FOR YOUR PLEASURE have developed consistent an own music style since 1993. In the course of this commercial calculation never was an object. Instead of countless other artists an their grim pursuit of the big Hit, FOR YOUR PLEASURE, at the beginnig born as studio project and in the meantime grown to a complete band of five, take another way. Inspired from the fascinating Art Rock of the late sixties and the early seventies, the musicians have taken up this music style and have it developed further. So varied elements of rock, folk, jazz and classical music shape the individual style of the band. After a long phase of personnel changes now the band presents its second CD timeless.

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Scattered PagesScattered Pages
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2.02 | 4 ratings
Scattered Pages
4.00 | 1 ratings

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Showing last 10 reviews only
 Scattered Pages by FOR YOUR PLEASURE album cover Studio Album, 1993
2.02 | 4 ratings

Scattered Pages
For Your Pleasure Neo-Prog

Review by tszirmay
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars "Scattered Pages" is German band's "For Your Pleasure" debut album, the infancy of a future career that will lead to a tasteful second album in 2000 and a spectacular Margin debut in 2014! All along, Berliner Lutz Meinert has handled the vocals (being accused and at times pilloried for having a voice similar to Ian Anderson, Peter Gabriel, Tony Mansfield and Neil Tennant). Yeah, and? This inauguration does come with some disclaimers which were well addressed by my respected colleague Apostolis who, to be frank, did not like this at all. As is often the case with first expressions, there are some inconsistencies that may prove troublesome for many fans. I would only like to place any criticism into context. Firstly 1993 was not exactly prog's heyday, quite the opposite. Only the Sahara and the Gobi were bigger deserts than prog! Lean and not quite mean years. Lutz is joined by 'Greeko' aka Georgios Zikidis on electric and acoustic guitars, who does a first rate job throughout.

The disc starts rather promisingly with the expansive "Another Future" which combines electronic drums and 'cheesy' plastic keyboards that parallel the Paul Vettese era in Jethro Tull, which gave way to disparagingly mauled albums such as " Under Wraps" and Anderson's otherwise brilliant IMHO "Walking in Light" , albums that I personally have enjoyed despite (or perhaps because of) the critical backlash. The playing is profound as Greeko does some wonderful damage on acoustic guitar. Hey, it sounds like 1993 because it's from 1993. Sehr gut.

Where things may get sketchy for some is the pseudo-funk-pop of "This Game" which almost veers into Fiction Factory/Naked Eyes/ABC new Wave disco (bands that I enjoyed back when there was little prog on the menu) . The bouncy arrangement is very predictable and obvious, instant gratification but with only a slight prog tendency (that would be the fiery guitar solo and the 'spinning coin' effect). Gut!

"The Painterman" is breezy and utterly disposable, a tune with little or no prog content save for a corny orchestral section that is puerile at best (nothing wrong with childlike, after all New Muzik was an awesome and creative synth-pop band in the 80s). But this is a cup of tea that needed a longer steep. Even the axe solo is trivial. Nicht gut!

Back to quality with the longer and more developed "November Day", an inspired acoustic guitar carves a gorgeous almost Andalusian melody, evoking castles in Castile and a lead guitar solo that is enthralling and explosive. This is an all-instrumental effort that exudes class, majestic power and long shelf life. The piece flows effortlessly and basks in a sunny grandeur. A definite highlight track. Ausgezeichnet!

Return to Jethro Tull for a second, as Lutz displays a voice eerily Andersonian, some will call plagiarism (please, let's not go there, as everything is borrowed from a previous source) but it all depends on the delivery and the content, both above average indeed. "Only We Are Trying to Be" could fool any JT fan into believing this to be along lost track from The "Broadsword & the Beast" sessions. Wirklich gut!

The 6 minute+ "The Perfect Single" is a return to the foreseeable which perhaps explains the tongue in cheek title. The instrumental parts are very convincing, with solid bass and great psychedelic guitar, propulsive drums and a driving disposition. The problem is with the singing which is less conclusive and the lyrics that verges on, as Zappa once so adequately put it, 'creamed corn'! Okay!

With a title like "I Want You Now", the prog purists will be instantly turned off, especially when they read the lyrics. Even the guitar part is, well, simple. There is zero invention here. Ach, nächste Haltestelle! (next station)

Another long instrumental comes charging through the woods, like Blücher at Waterloo, saving the battle from near defeat and reversing the fortunes of this disc, once again. "Standing On Changing Sunset" sees itself to be at the polar opposite of the previous pop, a modern synth-infused track that owes its inspiration from Anderson's afore mentioned "Walking Into Light" album and is the most progressive piece here. I am sure that if this would have been the basic premise, the album would have been more appreciated by prog fans, as this is a somber, effusive, expansive and most creative piece. Wunderbar!

"A Short Letter" as the title implies, is a brief ditty, owing to the Tull song experience once again. It comes and it goes. Danke schön!

The majestic 8 minute + "The Damaged Book' again showcases the see-saw battle between the two contrasting styles, a polar opposite to the previous ode, here preferring a brooding, dense and oppressive mood , armed with smart lyrics and funeral march. Synths hover over a solemn beat, dreamy and vaporous like some foggy mist creeping in from the multiple lakes that adorn the German capital city. A classic track that will join my daily playlists. Schatz!

Auf wiedersehen is expressed by a small reprise of "November Day" on keys instead of guitar.

So, as is often the case with a debut work, there is a pot-pourri of styles, befitting a band looking for some identity, dropping various fishing lines to see which will get a bite. Having Tull as an influence is certainly nothing to be ashamed of but the cheesy pop songs are somewhat embarrassing in hindsight. The mixed bag offers tasty morsels as well as disposable fodder. The best is yet to come.

3.5 Fluttering sheets

 Timeless by FOR YOUR PLEASURE album cover Studio Album, 2000
4.00 | 1 ratings

For Your Pleasure Neo-Prog

Review by tszirmay
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

— First review of this album —
4 stars I recently reviewed the enchanting Margin debut album "Psychedelic Teatime" and immediately received some Internet communication with leader Lutz Meinert from beautiful downtown Berlin. Meinert's multi-instrumental prowess was a sheer delight to witness, especially on bass guitar, recorded up-front and centre, just the way I like it. I sent him a Tona Ohama electronic version of Jethro Tull's "Thick as a Brick" (I still have some copies left, Tull fans!) and Lutz responded by sending me the 2 For Your Pleasure albums, a band Lutz was involved with before Margin. Since my avatar is now Roxy's For Your Pleasure cover , (replacing the banned/blurred and 'lewd' Country Life album at the behest of the Google SS), it seemed to be a natural response, a gesture that shows Herr Meinert's cleverness and inspiration.

The debut "Scattered Pages" got savagely ransacked by esteemed PA colleague Apostolis and remains the only FYP review, so it behooves me to thrust my own two cents worth, confirming or redressing the situation. By Lutz' own admission, these were formative attempts at crafting neo-prog compositions were challenged by some lovely naivete but he believes that there are a few gems that deserve recognition. Well, let's take a look then! "Timeless" is the sophomore album, where Lutz handles the vocals, the keys and the drums, leaving the guitar in the talented hands of Nils Conrad (wait! I know that name, err?. I got it, he is currently the fret meister for Berlin band Crystal Palace!), while the wobbly bass is expertly fondled by Peter Stärk. Frank Brennekam adds more drumming to the mix. The cover art is a slight precursor of the Margin effort, trippy psychedelic pastiche that reflects the music within. The disc has three extended pieces in the 9 minute range that are arguably the most developed and interesting, as well as a slew of shorter cuts that have a few sparklers among them.

"Always the Same Old Introduction of War" is the first epic and it's a cute one, getting the juices flowing with some suspenseful special effects, dense dynamics and oddball vocals provided by Lutz Meinert, within the confines of clearly Genesisian vibes (winks of "Harold the Barrel") and controversial anti-war lyrics , still a touchy subject for our dear German friends. A thoroughly enjoyable romp, adorned by some delicious galloping organ, groove bass and slippery, tolling bells, strident guitar accouterments and bombastic synth cascades. Loved it!

The three minute "Sleepwalkers" is acoustic guitar and voice lullaby, with the fretless 4 string monster snoring brashly in the undertow. There is the first clear indication of Jethro Tull influence as he sings his aqualungs out (I know he is a huge JT fan, so this is not a mere supposition), having as light Minstrel in the Gallery feel that is highly enjoyable.

Peter Stärk propels the magnificent "I'm Talking" , a strong piece that has some modern pop sensibilities a la Thomas Dolby that may detract the serious listener, but the spirit is pure 'spass' (fun in German) , something our Teutonic friends are not always famous for , being such a serious lot! I had this repetitive refrain in my humming mind for days on end, smiling along the way. The electronic keys have a Peter Vetesse feel, as if an excerpt from "Broadsword & the Beast". Another winning track.

The mostly instrumental "What?" is a Nils Conrad platform to express some inner silliness in quite vivacious terms, this is a thrilling prog exercise that just progresses beyond the expected and clearly seeks out to administer some instrumental prowess. Also features Brennekam on drums and percussives . The prog label is stamped with this one!

"City Nights" is a another epic piece that throbs right from the get go, the bass playing a cool vibe, the mood very urbane and casual, all done in a serious/playful contrast that never fails to impress. Lutz does another fine Ian Anderson imitation, the keys become quite luminous as the Stärk bass continues carving like some jazz madman. The finale is riff-oriented and gives Nils Conrad the green light to radiate the six strings with laser fast licks, a truly palpitating piece of music. Tremendous track indeed.

Next we have 5 short tracks that could have/should have been incorporated into a suite, starting off with a drum and percussion onslaught that fares quite successfully, a duet between Meinert and Brennekam, entitled "Fritz". Fun and energetic!

"Stay With Me" is the commercial pop tune, a lovely ballad that has refreshingly breezy contours, some vivid playing by all, a slight countrified air as well as a loose demeanor. Almost a The Strawbs feel, which is always a good thing. (In my previous mixes, I always felt that David Cousins and Ian Anderson, while different, could always follow each other well). This song actually grows in stature with repeated listens.

Things get quite "thick" with the overtly Tullian " Goodnight and Yet?" which needs little further explanation, as Conrad does his Barre, Stärk his Pegg and , well ?.you get it! Uncanny yet wholly reverential, purists will view this with suspicion but it's all rather well executed. Its companion piece, the brief "Once on a Grey Day" offers up some fine playing once again, especially Conrad who really excels on the acoustic and electric axe. Lutz keeps the tension alive with some inspired piano.

A companion to the earlier drum frenzy on "Fritz", we have a duet with Peter Stärk's bass fondling, caressing and seducing the drums and the marimba ?like percussion. I am a sucker for such stuff, so , as basic and safe as this may appear, I just love the loose fantasy involved.

Finally "the Hole" and its near 9 minutes finish off this 'timeless' album, surely one that will not get picked up on anyone's radar, in retrospect a sad turn of events. Lutz keeps his Anderson tone intact, ("Toad in a Hole"?) in a more playful candied environment, motored by an engaging beat that is fueled by a ragingly accurate bass guitar. The arrangement goes through a series of shifts and grandiose melodies, all very successful in keeping the breathing palpable. It starts out with an obvious Andy Mackay-like oboe intro and then veers into a fully developed piece that hits all the right buttons. Great finale.

This was surprising audition, as I was expecting something quite horrid that not only did not materialize but in fact turned out to be quite a pleasant prog adventure. The best was yet to come with Margin but this is was a most enjoyable revelation. Whether for only my pleasure or maybe yours, I loved it. Just like with Margin, the brilliant bass guitar work sculpts a totally different perception to what otherwise may perhaps be viewed a lighter weight material. Like I have been pleading for over 45 years now, "just follow the bass" !

4 No more watches.

 Scattered Pages by FOR YOUR PLEASURE album cover Studio Album, 1993
2.02 | 4 ratings

Scattered Pages
For Your Pleasure Neo-Prog

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

1 stars This duo from Berlin was found as a studio project in 1991 by multi-instrumentalist Lutz Meinert and Greek guitarist Georgios Zikidis.Meinert even established his own independent label Madvedge Records to release For Your Pleasure's works.The first one saw the light in 1993 under the title ''Scattered pages''.

The duo claimed to be influenced by Progressive Rock and Folk Rock, but the cruel truth is that the only thing recalling these types of music is the voice of Meinert, the color of which is somewhere between PETER GABRIEL and IAN ANDERSON.Otherwise ''Scattered pages'' is only a Pop/Melodic Rock effort, except if you think programmed drums and additional instruments, plastic keyboards and heartfelt lyrics are part of the genre.For its vast majority this album runs through standard song-based ideas with forgettable tunes and a totally pale sound with an 80's flavor, far from anything trully progressive.Only two or three tracks have some nice electrified moves, interesting guitar solos and decent acoustic textures, that nevertheless plagiarize the music of JETHRO TULL.The rest of the material is closer to 80's GENESIS, that means digitalized Pop/Rock music, that additionally sounds worst than any of the albums of the British trio during the 80's.Trying desperately to offer some more adventurous music through their poppy tunes, For Your Pleasure have chosen to deliver fake orchestral passages and thin organ sounds, the result being more than cheap.But the worst part is the presence of some cheesy tracks with a syrupy atmosphere and funky moves in the instrumental sections, absolutely dull and unlistenable stuff, even if you respect Pop music.

I am afraid this is only a scattered version of Prog music, given up to colorless Pop packages.The only thing that reaches a decent level is some of the guitar moves of Zikidis, the whole other material being on the wrong side of Prog music.Skip it.

Thanks to ProgLucky for the artist addition. and to Joolz for the last updates

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