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VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS)

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Various Artists (Label Samplers) biography
This section contains albums released by record labels to promote their catalogues of artists.

In the days before the internet and MP3 downloads, it was not nearly as easy for record companies to promote their artists. Advertising campaigns in the music press had some effect, but the prospective audience could not of course hear the music.

While specialist radio stations have been around for some time in the US, in many other countries even today, the availability of anything other than mainstream pop and perhaps classical music is extremely limited.

An effective way to address these issues is for record companies to issue "samplers". These compilations of tracks by bands and artists signed to the label usually sell for well below the standard price for an album. One track by each artist is normally included. How representative that track is of their music varies widely, and as such samplers should be approached with some caution when considering whether a particular band is right for the listener.

The proliferation of samplers released by labels such as Island, CBS, Vertigo etc. in the early 1970's to promote the "progressive" and "underground" bands they were falling over each other to sign now serve as collectable historical documents. Some of the bands went on to secure fame and fortune while others simply disappeared altogether. On these albums, such bands sit side by side.

The advent of the internet and free downloads has largely removed the reason from record companies to release samplers, although they have not disappeared altogether.

Bob McBeath, October 2006

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VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) discography


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VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

5.00 | 2 ratings
Molecole
1995

VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.00 | 1 ratings
The New Universe Music Festival 2010
2011
3.00 | 1 ratings
Scion A/V Presents: Label Showcase - Prosthetic Records
2012

VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.08 | 5 ratings
The Rock Machine Turns You On
1968
3.00 | 2 ratings
Rock Machine I Love You
1968
3.51 | 3 ratings
You Can All Join In
1969
3.10 | 2 ratings
Nice Enough To Eat
1969
3.67 | 4 ratings
Wowie Zowie! The World Of Progressive Music
1969
3.00 | 1 ratings
Picnic - A Breath of Fresh Air
1970
4.04 | 5 ratings
Bumpers
1970
3.00 | 1 ratings
Reunion
1970
3.53 | 5 ratings
Fill Your Head With Rock
1970
3.86 | 3 ratings
The Age of Atlantic
1970
3.00 | 2 ratings
In good company
1970
4.05 | 3 ratings
Rockbuster
1970
0.00 | 0 ratings
Nova sampler
1970
4.00 | 1 ratings
The Vertigo Annual
1970
0.00 | 0 ratings
SiebenSiebzig
1970
3.90 | 2 ratings
The Vertigo Trip
1971
0.00 | 0 ratings
Puissance
1971
3.00 | 2 ratings
All Good Clean Fun
1971
2.14 | 3 ratings
El Pea
1971
3.26 | 4 ratings
New Age Of Atlantic, The
1972
3.00 | 1 ratings
The Music People
1972
5.00 | 3 ratings
Greasy Truckers Party
1972
0.00 | 0 ratings
There is Some Fun Going Forward
1972
0.00 | 0 ratings
Rock Generation Volume 7
1972
3.00 | 1 ratings
Rock Generation Volume 8
1972
3.00 | 2 ratings
Suck It And See!
1973
3.95 | 2 ratings
Charisma Disturbance
1973
4.81 | 2 ratings
The Progressives
1973
3.97 | 4 ratings
Charisma Keyboards
1974
3.00 | 1 ratings
This is Island
1974
3.67 | 5 ratings
V - Virgin Sampler
1975
0.00 | 0 ratings
Pop Start (Selection of the Best Pop Groups in Yugoslavia)
1975
0.00 | 0 ratings
Vece uz radio
1975
0.00 | 0 ratings
Leteca Diskoteka: Zoran Modli i Putnici u Odiseji 70's
1976
0.00 | 0 ratings
Randevu s muzikom
1977
3.51 | 5 ratings
Rock Scene
1978
3.00 | 1 ratings
Formaţii De Muzica Pop 3
1978
4.95 | 3 ratings
Recommended Records Sampler (1982)
1982
3.18 | 3 ratings
Fire In Harmony
1985
4.00 | 3 ratings
Formaţii Rock 9 - Grupurile Pro Musica / Accent
1986
3.02 | 3 ratings
Enneade
1987
2.02 | 3 ratings
Angels in the Architecture
1987
0.00 | 0 ratings
Back On The Road - The Very Best Of Progressive Underground
1988
4.00 | 2 ratings
The 20th Anniversary Album
1989
0.00 | 0 ratings
Past, Present, Future
1990
0.00 | 0 ratings
The Best of the 01/W
1992
4.00 | 2 ratings
Fafnir
1993
3.00 | 3 ratings
The SI Music Sampler Vol. 1
1993
3.00 | 1 ratings
Ambient Volume 2 Imaginary Landscapes
1993
3.50 | 2 ratings
SI Compilation Disk Too
1993
0.00 | 0 ratings
Progressive Voyage
1993
0.00 | 0 ratings
The Famous Charisma Box
1993
3.00 | 1 ratings
The Cyclops Sampler
1994
2.96 | 4 ratings
SI Music Sampler vol. 2
1994
3.00 | 2 ratings
SI Music Sampler vol. 3
1994
2.50 | 2 ratings
Anna Mulle Lovee
1994
0.00 | 0 ratings
Vild I Skogen - Silence 25 År
1995
2.00 | 1 ratings
Dans l'antre du dragon
1995
3.00 | 2 ratings
Pick'n'Mix
1995
2.95 | 2 ratings
Cyclops: The Second Sampler
1995
0.00 | 0 ratings
Dik Dik- I GiGanti: Due Gruppi Un'Epoca
1995
4.95 | 3 ratings
Sometimes God Hides: The Young Persons' Guide To Disciplne
1996
3.68 | 3 ratings
Love Proge
1996
0.00 | 0 ratings
The Third Cyclops Sampler
1997
3.95 | 2 ratings
Sometimes God Smiles: The Young Persons' Guide To Discipline Volume II
1998
0.00 | 0 ratings
30 ans d agitation musicale en France
1998
4.02 | 3 ratings
Love Proge 2
1998
3.00 | 1 ratings
Moonchild 98
1998
3.00 | 1 ratings
MetaZoon
1998
3.50 | 2 ratings
Lions & Fables - Verglas Music Sampler vol. 1
1999
4.00 | 1 ratings
Harvest Festival
1999
4.00 | 1 ratings
Dreams And Visions, Vergals Music Sampler Vol 2
1999
2.50 | 2 ratings
The Dawn Anthology
1999
4.00 | 1 ratings
Tribute to the Titans
1999
4.00 | 1 ratings
Think Tank Media Sampler Volume One
1999
3.82 | 3 ratings
Frog Pest Tree (Magna Carta)
1999
3.00 | 2 ratings
Un Voyage en Progressif Volume 1
1999
3.00 | 2 ratings
Un Voyage en Progressif Volume 2
1999
4.00 | 2 ratings
Think Tank Media Sampler Volume Two
2000
0.00 | 0 ratings
Children of Black Widow
2000
0.00 | 0 ratings
Canterbury Tales
2000
2.51 | 3 ratings
Cyclops Sampler 4
2000
3.00 | 4 ratings
Un Voyage en Progressif Volume 3
2000
0.00 | 0 ratings
Un Voyage en Progressif Volume 4
2000
0.00 | 0 ratings
Un Voyage en Progressif Volume 5
2000
0.00 | 0 ratings
Shroom Productions Progressive Music Sampler
2001
4.00 | 1 ratings
Arktinen Hysteria: Suomi-avantgarden esipuutarhureita
2001
1.52 | 4 ratings
Anderson, Wakeman, Howe (Original Members of Yes)
2001
3.00 | 1 ratings
Un Voyage en Progressif Volume 6
2001
0.00 | 0 ratings
Un Voyage en Progressif Volume 7
2001
4.00 | 6 ratings
Legend Of A Mind
2002
4.00 | 1 ratings
Cuneiform Progressive II
2002
3.32 | 5 ratings
Cyclops Sampler 5
2002
3.00 | 1 ratings
When Worlds Collide: Inside Out Music Sampler - Vol. 2
2003
0.00 | 0 ratings
Un Voyage en Progressif Volume 8
2003
3.95 | 2 ratings
Analecta, Volume 1
2004
3.00 | 1 ratings
Ghost Notes
2004
3.00 | 1 ratings
Unicorn Digital (VA) - Progression In Balance Vol. 1
2004
4.00 | 1 ratings
Song of the Silent Land
2004
3.00 | 1 ratings
Think Tank Media Sampler Volume Three
2004
4.00 | 1 ratings
All Good Clean Fun
2004
0.00 | 0 ratings
Prog-Resiste
2004
0.00 | 0 ratings
Music In Progress I: Progressive Rock & More
2004
0.00 | 0 ratings
Music In Progress 2: Progressive Metal & More
2005
0.00 | 0 ratings
Un Voyage En Progressif (Volume 9)
2005
2.57 | 4 ratings
Ars Longa Vita Brevis: A Compendium Of Progressive Rock 1967-1974
2005
3.50 | 2 ratings
One World Tapestry - Progressive Rock from Around the World
2005
3.00 | 1 ratings
Think Tank Media Sampler Volume Four
2005
4.92 | 3 ratings
Vertigo Mixed (Mixed By Andy Votel)
2005
3.18 | 2 ratings
Successi Di Dik Dik & I Giganti
2005
3.00 | 1 ratings
More Arctic Hysteria / Son of Arctic Hysteria
2005
3.67 | 11 ratings
Time Machine: Vertigo Retrospective
2005
3.79 | 9 ratings
Strangely Strange But Oddly Normal
2005
0.00 | 0 ratings
Harvest Showdown
2005
0.00 | 0 ratings
Cyclops Sampler 6
2006
3.00 | 1 ratings
Cuneiform Records Music Sampler
2006
3.95 | 2 ratings
Unicorn Digital (VA) - Progression In Balance Vol. 2
2006
4.00 | 1 ratings
A Taste Of Belgium
2006
0.00 | 0 ratings
Cleveland Prog-Fusion Conglomerate
2006
3.00 | 1 ratings
Psychedelic Phinland - Finnish Hippie & Underground Music 1967-1974
2006
0.00 | 0 ratings
Insane Times - 25 British Psychedelic Artefacts From The EMI Vaults
2007
0.00 | 0 ratings
Delirium of the Senses/ Psychedelia in Italian Cinema
2007
0.00 | 0 ratings
Wayside Sampler 3
2007
0.00 | 0 ratings
Wayside Sampler 2
2007
4.00 | 3 ratings
A Breath Of Fresh Air: A Harvest Records Anthology/ 1969-1974
2007
4.00 | 3 ratings
Strange Pleasures
2008
4.00 | 1 ratings
Spirit Of Joy - Tales From The Polydor Underground 1967 - 1974
2008
4.91 | 5 ratings
L'Ultime rock progressif du Québec
2008
4.00 | 1 ratings
Analecta Volume 2
2008
3.14 | 3 ratings
Refugees: A Charisma Records Anthology 1969-1978
2009
4.00 | 1 ratings
Aufbrüche!
2009
2.00 | 1 ratings
Prog Around The World
2009
3.68 | 27 ratings
Emkog Sampler
2010
4.00 | 1 ratings
Compilado De Musica Progresiva
2011
0.00 | 0 ratings
The Spirit Of December
2011
4.00 | 3 ratings
Prog Rocks! (Magazine sampler)
2011
3.87 | 4 ratings
Prog Rocks!
2011
3.00 | 1 ratings
Prog Rocks 2
2012
3.00 | 1 ratings
Prognosis 2.3
2012
2.67 | 3 ratings
Prog mag sampler 24 A New Day Yesterday
2012
2.67 | 3 ratings
Prog mag sampler 25 P2: Stormwatch
2012
3.33 | 3 ratings
Prog mag sampler 26 P3: The Butterfly Effect
2012
3.67 | 3 ratings
Prog mag sampler 27 P4: Suits You, Sir
2012
3.50 | 2 ratings
Prog mag sampler 28: Into The Lens
2012
3.67 | 3 ratings
Prog mag sampler 29: P6 Big Big Terrain
2012
3.50 | 2 ratings
Prog mag sampler 30: P7 Cod Bluff
2012
4.00 | 2 ratings
Prog mag sampler 31 P8: Take the long way home
2012
4.00 | 1 ratings
The Crabs Sell Out / The Crabs Freak Out
2012
4.02 | 4 ratings
Five Years in Space 2007-2012
2012
3.00 | 4 ratings
Prognosis 2.2
2012
3.00 | 2 ratings
MOJO Mag Sampler: Echoes
2013
0.00 | 0 ratings
Prog Rocks! (CD 1: Harvest)
2013
0.00 | 0 ratings
Prog Rocks! (CD 2: Charisma)
2013
0.00 | 0 ratings
Prog Rocks! (CD 3: Virgin Records)
2013
0.00 | 0 ratings
Prog Rocks! (CD 4: Liberty)
2013
0.00 | 0 ratings
Prog Rocks! (CD 5: Inside Out Music)
2013
3.00 | 1 ratings
Prog P19: Smash And Scatteration!
2013
4.00 | 1 ratings
Prog P23: A Lifetime Of Adventure ...
2014
4.00 | 1 ratings
Prog P20: Elephant Talk
2014
3.50 | 2 ratings
Prog P21: Pigs On The Wing
2014
3.00 | 1 ratings
Prog P22: A Wilderness of Mirrors
2014

VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

0.00 | 0 ratings
Dandelion Sampler EP
1971
3.00 | 1 ratings
Classic Rock
1994
0.00 | 0 ratings
Frog Pest
1994
3.00 | 1 ratings
Frog Pest Too
1995
0.00 | 0 ratings
Passenger Sampler split CD
2006
2.17 | 5 ratings
God of War: Blood & Metal
2010
0.00 | 0 ratings
Prog mag sampler 39: P17 Awaken the Stone King
2013
0.00 | 0 ratings
Prog mag sampler No. 38 - P16: Arriving Somewhere... But Not Here
2013
0.00 | 0 ratings
Prog mag sampler 37: P15 Tangerine Dreaming
2013
0.00 | 0 ratings
Prog mag sampler 36: P14 Brave New World
2013
0.00 | 0 ratings
Prog mag sampler 35: P13 The Spirit of Radial
2013
1.00 | 1 ratings
Prog mag sampler 34: P11 Sailing Uncharted Seas
2013
0.00 | 0 ratings
Prog mag sampler 33: P10 Tipplers Tales
2013
0.00 | 0 ratings
Prog mag sampler 32: P9 Head Space
2013
0.00 | 0 ratings
Prog mag sampler 40: P18 Childhood's End
2013

VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Recommended Records Sampler (1982) by VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1982
4.95 | 3 ratings

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Recommended Records Sampler (1982)
Various Artists (Label Samplers) Various Genres

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

5 stars As far a label samplers go this might have been the most significant in that it opened a lot of people's eyes to a whole new style of music. This was originally released back in 1982 by Recommended Records and i'll let Chris Cutler the man behind the label explain the reason for releasing this recording. "In 1982 Recommended was 4 years old, the catalogue had expanded and the label was firmly established; a sampler seemed an obvious and necessary next step. Compiling extracts from existing releases would have been boring, so I asked the most interesting groups under our umbrella to record something new. Most of them did. All the Rio groups appear, except for ETRON FOU LELOUBLAN who had broken up, and the sharp edge of the new generation of British bands is also well represented(THIS HEAT, THE WORK, THE HOMOSEXUALS, AMOS AND SARAH). But Europeans and Americans still predominate; the Japanese had not arrived yet. Ths record would have sounded very different 3 years later". "Intended on it's release to be a practical compendium, 25 years on this collection reappears as an indispensible document of the range and musical brilliance of a handful of left-field groups struggling to give shape to new musical vocabularies. The breadth of their imaginations is exemplary. And Inspiring." Chris Cutler, May 2008.

I'd also like to say that it was about a year ago that I read a thread on this sampler where heavyweights like Udi Koomran(sound engineer extraordinaire) and Steve F.(Cuneiform Records) revealed that they both played this double album to death back in the day and even for them it was a major eye-opener and a revelation. That is when I decided I needed to get this. I'll touch briefly on most if not all of the songs. I have the 2008 25th anniversary edition which also reveals what all the bands were "up to" that participated 25 years previous.

Up first is VOGEL and the song "Bottle Train" and it's mostly keyboards, percussion and vocals. Kind of a relentless yet melancholic driving rhythm to it with vocals that are processed in some manner. I like it! FAUST follows and they play "The Voice Of The Pumpkin" which is "Extract V" from "Faust Party 3". You can tell right away that this is FAUST and expecially when the vocals arrive singing and shouting. This is experimental as you might imagine. ART BEARS are next with "All Hail!" and they are a trio of Cutler, Frith and Krause. This is one of their more accessible tracks and I would even call the chorus catchy. Of course with Dagmar singing it has an avant-garde feel to it. STORMY SIX offers up a really cool tune in "Reparto Novita". The vocals are great and the song is even better. A mid-paced melancholic beauty. THE HOMOSEXUALS play "Walk Before Imitate" and the band they also remind me of is CARDIACS with the high energy and vocal style. JOSEPH RACAILLE and PATRICK PORTELLA's song is a relaxed short tune with clarinets, piano and vocals. FELIU GASUL ends side one of the original vinyl. He went on to make a lot of albums and in the process became one of Spain's leading guitarists and composers. A beautiful track really with acoustic guitar, flute and piano leading the way.

Deranged vocals and loud percussion standout on the next song "Strangelove" by THE BLACK SHEEP. UNIVERS ZERO hits a homerun with "Influences" written by Kirk. Man this is a top five on here for me for sure. Just a classic UZ song that any fan would drool over. Love when it gets more intense around 1 1/2 minutes in. ASAK MABOUL/HONEYMOON KILLERS are up next with a song with some killer bass clarinet in it along with male and female vocals. "Houdini" is a song played by THE WORK. Tim Hodgkinson plays hawaiin guitar. There are male vocals and it's a cool tune to say the least. HENRY COW offers up a couple of songs in "Slice" and "Viva Pa Ubu" written by Coper and Hodgkinson respectively. The first is an instrumental and I like it but the second is a little more difficult with Krause singing and shouting along with the rest of the band. The first album ends with an extract from a radio broadcast from DECIBEL who are from Mexico. An excellent track with some left of center clarinet while the percussion and keys form a steady rhythm.

Album number two begins with ART ZOYD's "Simulacres" with horns blasting then some sinister sounding piano and bass groove joins in. Eerie sounding strings resound with short but fast precision. It becomes mesmerizing after 3 minutes then changes with a variety of sounds before becoming intense again. I love how themes are repeated throughout. Next we get two tracks from THE MUFFINS, both of which are part of "Chronometers". Great stuff! Check out the heaviness of "Berlin" by HEINER GOEBBELS. The sound of glass can be heard breaking as female spoken words in German join in. Soundscapes of many different happinenings involving people come and go. This is experimental but oh so interesting the way they mix the music with the soundclips. Love the scream that comes and goes(haha). A top five track. Next is AMOS AND SARAH which is catchy with odd sounding female vocals and backing vocals to match. I like this one, it's a little over the top but I admire it. CONVENTUM from Quebec are next with "Commerce Nostalgique" which is a gorgeous composition with intricate sounds of beauty. HECTOR ZAZOU performs "Vera C" an emotional piece of music that has to be in my top five.

Side four of the double album begins with THIS HEAT's "Pool" with it's intense rhythm and experimental sounds leading the way. Such a cool track. Another top five song is by THE RESIDENTS called "Walter Westinghouse". It is really funny when the guys pretty much speak the words, especially the one who sounds like a hillbilly. It gets really intense late. What a song! R. STEVE MOORE is new to me but I love his vocals and the music. He reminds me of Kevin Ayers when he sings and we are blessed with two tracks here. Both are catchy and I can't stop playing them! Inventive as well if you get a chance to hear either "Pedestrian Hop" or "Follow Me". What a talent. PICHIO DAL POZZO's "Uccelini Del Bosco" is a top five. Each instrument stands out and the vocals are so expressive. It all ends with ROBERT WYATT's "The Internationale". Vocals and marching styled drums lead the way.

This sampler introduced a lot of people to some of the most adventerous and innovative music on the planet, and so I guess i'm a little in awe of it and feel the 5 stars is warranted in more ways than one.

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 Psychedelic Phinland - Finnish Hippie & Underground Music 1967-1974 by VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2006
3.00 | 1 ratings

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Psychedelic Phinland - Finnish Hippie & Underground Music 1967-1974
Various Artists (Label Samplers) Various Genres

Review by Matti
Collaborator Neo-Prog Team

— First review of this album —
3 stars Hopefully no-one strongly disagrees that this compilation deals closely enough with the Finnish prog history and is of some interest to the readers of PA, even if it isn't a PROG compilation per se. The 2-CD set gives you a wide picture of what several kinds of psychedelic / avant-garde popular music was made in Finland between 1967 and 1974. There's a two-page essay and all the needed information on each track, in English. Apart from e.g. BLUES SECTION and WIGWAM (the rare 'Must Be the Devil', 1969, is chosen from the latter) the songs are mostly sung in Finnish, and some tracks (most of the second disc) are instrumentals.

Only a few of the artists are known from the PA database. Heavy prog band APOLLO's 'Ajatuksia' is from their only album, 1970; PEKKA STRENG is represented with the deeply psychedelic and slow 'Olen erilainen' from his debut of that same year. PEKKA AIRAKSINEN's avant-garde tape experiment 'Fos 2' dates from 1968, and from his group THE SPERM is selected a 16-minute experimental piece for electric guitar.

TOPMOST was a sixties rock group who pioneered in including psychedelia in their shows (three of the members were later in APOLLO too). 'The End' is "an improvised collage of song bits, tape manipulation (...), all inspired by the fade-out section of the Beatles' All You Need Is Love". Singer- songwriter HECTOR, who had debuted with his own translation of 'Universal Soldier' in 1965, sings here (with a less-known chap OSCAR) about the particular smoke. "The story of a young kid hooked on grass was meant to serve as a warning, but at the time, a mere reference to drugs caused the song to be banned from airwaves". So it goes! The popular singer JUKKA KUOPPAMÄKI also deals with drugs in his 1967 song.

BABY GRANDMOTHERS were a Swedish psychedelic group, but their only recording was this Finnish 7" single. EERO KOIVISTOINEN's fantastic album Valtakunta (1968) is represented with an urban, cool song sung by Eero Raittinen (later a vocalist of TASAVALLAN PRESIDENTTI). CHARLIES were a pioneering heavy blues rock group. The hilarious collective SUOMEN TALVISOTA 1939-40 were probably the most important of our underground groups, featuring M. A. NUMMINEN, "a central figure in Finnish avant-pop", and the late RAULI "Badding" SOMERJOKI. Even JUICE LESKINEN is here, with his humorous sexual allegory 'Zeppeliini'.

CD 1 is relatively accessible psychedelic pop music while CD 2 consists of more experimental recordings, most of them frankly pretty hard to digest. The compilation is very well edited in every way, making it at least an informative curiosity for foreign listeners too.

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 Reunion by VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1970
3.00 | 1 ratings

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Reunion
Various Artists (Label Samplers) Various Genres

Review by Matti
Collaborator Neo-Prog Team

— First review of this album —
3 stars Love Records was the leading Finnish prog-friendly record company in the (early) seventies, having the most legendary prog bands in their catalogue. This compilation (re-released as CD in 2012) put together chosen tracks from TASAVALLAN PRESIDENTTI, WIGWAM and BLUES SECTION, which was the pioneering proto-prog group that gave birth to those two bands. Since BS is not in the Archives, it's perhaps worthwhile to give some further information. The group featured Wigwam's founding members Jim Pemroke (vocals) and Ronnie Östeberg (drums), plus Eero Koivistoinen (alto sax), Hasse Walli (guitar) and bassist Måns Grounstroem, who founded Tasavallan Presidentti with e.g. Frank Robson, who also had sung with Blues Section. The three BS tracks here give a good picture of the band's psychedelic-flavoured, self-written repertoire, which is sometimes edgy, sometimes poppy in a Beatles style. The jazzy instrumental 'Lucy Jane' is a rarity, not featured on the two CD's of Blues Section.

The fourth group in this compilation is less known SOULSET, which featured Harri Saksala on tenor saxophone (soon he was a singer in APOLLO) and the legendary drummer Edward Vesala, also having Apollo in his impressing CV. 'The Dish' is an instrumental jazz-rock piece with an emphasis on wind instruments.

Tasavallan Presidentti is represented by 'Solitary' and 'Deep Thinker', both slightly TRAFFIC- reminding bluesy jazz-rock songs, originally released on a single and featured on the CD release of TP's debut. The latter has great flute work by the late Pekka Pöyry.

The best tracks are by Wigwam, no doubt. 'Pedagogi' is Jukka Gustavson's fantastic, groovy song sung in Finnish. It later appeared in a different, English-language form on the classic album Being. 'Luulosairas' is rather similar, rare early Gustavson composition. 'Häätö' ('Haato' with dots, if the letters are not shown properly) is written by Mats Huldén, Wigwam's first bassist, later collaborating with e.g. Tasavallan Presidentti and Pekka Pohjola as a lyricist/ cover artist/ bassist. This is a fantastic, quite peculiar and highly progressive song! It appears also on the recent CD re- release of Wigwam's Tombstone Valentine.

A good compilation of early Love Records prog/ jazz-rock output, but with rather poor design, and also lacking of artist introductions.

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 MetaZoon by VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1998
3.00 | 1 ratings

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MetaZoon
Various Artists (Label Samplers) Various Genres

Review by Matti
Collaborator Neo-Prog Team

— First review of this album —
3 stars This sampler contains music by six Finnish bands of Psychedelic / Space Rock, at the early stages of their careers. I borrowed the CD from Vantaa Library, I have no idea how difficult it is to find elsewhere, 16 years after the release. Dark Sun, Moon Fog Prophet and Circle are to be found in the ProgArchives, The Spiralothropes, Transparents and Lotus are not. I appreciate the way the leaflet introduces the bands. The musicians & instruments are also listed, and even the contact information is given for each act. Nice cover art too.

In their own album reviews DARK SUN is said to be a Hawkwind follower, and they have also played Hawkwind in their gigs, but happily the chosen track here is not so derivative. 9-minute 'TimeSpace Continuum' is mostly melodic electronic music with a steady beat and synth layers. Halfway a bright flute joins the trip. Very good track!

THE SPIRALOTHROPES perform two short songs reminiscent of the original psychedelic rock era around 1968. The John Cale-ish vocals are lazy and a bit monotonous. TRANSPARENTS play upbeat psychedelic, jazzy electronica that has some distilled Ozric Tentacles -vibe. Also the terms NuJazz and Chill-Out fit well. Maybe there could be more progress within both seven minute-tracks to avoid slight boredom.

MOON FOG PROPHET (who later translated their name into Kuusumun Profeetta and sung in Finnish) had at the time released only an EP, and frankly they are not yet mature here, but surely promising. Mika Rättö mocks the vocal frenzy of Peter Hammill - which he did much better a bit later - and neither the threateningly dark music is as convincing as their later works.

LOTUS' only album The Totuus wasn't yet released, but the relatively peaceful and spacey instrumental 'Mesqualito' appeared on it too. It's among the best tracks on this sampler. The short-lived, probably Gong and Ozric -influenced group's mastermind (?) Ville Juvonen has released a solo album (of electronic music) a couple of years back, by the way.

And finally CIRCLE who have a very large discography. Having started in 1991, at this point (1998) they already were clearly the most experienced of these bands. Hypnotically rhythmic 'Talking Drum' could be by CAN, and 'Friitalan nahka' (nearly 11 minutes) is more ambient experimental music. -- Sadly it seems that this kind of Various Artists samplers introducing marginal bands have become all too rare especially in Finland.

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 Cyclops Sampler 5 by VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2002
3.32 | 5 ratings

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Cyclops Sampler 5
Various Artists (Label Samplers) Various Genres

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

4 stars No other independent label can be said to have done as much for progressive rock in the UK as Cyclops, and with this sampler Malcolm marks his 125th release. This double CD features 19 bands with 20 songs, with only one being previously available in this form. The collection shows the diversity of styles on Malcolm's label alone that can be called 'progressive' from the folk stylings of Mostly Autumn through the classical influences of Karda Estra to the more rocky Nice Beaver. The traditionalist may prefer Parallel Or Ninety Degrees, while those who like the old school would definitely want to own the previously unreleased CBS studio version of "Fact and Fiction" by Twelfth Night.

There are so many different styles of progressive rock that to the outsider it can be hard to work out who is what, and what styles of music are covered under the banner. There are also some sections of the scene that are quite incestuous with musicians appearing in each other's bands although this only happens a small amount in these acts.

If you have ever enjoyed prog bands then why not try this collection of what is going on now? It is a sad indictment that if Genesis, Yes, King Crimson, Van Der Graaf Generator or any of the other wonderful prog bands that this country developed thirty years ago, were starting life now then they would be destined to the same fate as the acts on this sampler. Why will hundreds of fans go to see a tribute band but not try something they have never heard before? Many of you have contacted me to say that you enjoyed the Black Widow sampler that was in #71 well why not try out the UK's No 1 progressive label and see what it has to offer? You may not like all the bands on here but you will find plenty that you will.

Originally appeared in Feedback #73, Apr 03

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 Un Voyage en Progressif Volume 6 by VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2001
3.00 | 1 ratings

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Un Voyage en Progressif Volume 6
Various Artists (Label Samplers) Various Genres

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

— First review of this album —
3 stars This is the twelfth (I think) cut-price compilation of Musea artists. Of the ten bands on offer this time the only ones I have heard of are Dutch act Cliffhanger and Japanese band Ars Nova. One problem with all of the Musea cut-price collections is that they contain no band information at all, just the band names and country of origin. They also seem to pick tracks that are quite difficult to listen to out of context, so the listener doesn't get a true picture of what is on offer.

Musea are still releasing enormous amounts of material, so this is a reasonable way of finding out what some of their bands sound like.

Originally appeared in Feedback #66, Feb 02

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 Un Voyage en Progressif Volume 3 by VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2000
3.00 | 4 ratings

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Un Voyage en Progressif Volume 3
Various Artists (Label Samplers) Various Genres

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

3 stars Yet another compilation from the French progressive label and of the eleven acts on show this time I have only heard Anekdoten, Quidam, Aelian and Cast before, and wasn't even aware of most of the other bands. However, one thing about these albums is that it does give an insight into bands that have released material on their own label in their homeland, which has then been picked up by Musea for European release.

One band that I was pleased to see on the album was Ten Jinn. I haven't managed to get hold of their album 'As On A Darkling Plain' yet, but have heard good things about them from America. Their track, "The Dance Of Les Innocents", is by far the stand out of the 'new' (to me) material and brings together elements of Jethro Tull, Genesis and IQ in a rock/pop fashion that is very interesting indeed.

All in all another good introduction to the label, and it should be available at mid-price

Originally appeared in Feedback #58

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 MOJO Mag Sampler: Echoes by VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2013
3.00 | 2 ratings

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MOJO Mag Sampler: Echoes
Various Artists (Label Samplers) Various Genres

Review by twseel

3 stars 'Echoes' is a compilation created by the British Musical magazine Mojo. Although Mojo brings an additional cd to every edition of their monthly magazine since 2001, this one is the first one to make it to PA. This compilation is made to show how current psych-pop bands are handling the legacy of Pink Floyd, which is the cover story of the edition that carries this cd. That's also why they chose 'Echoes' as a title.

The album opens with quite a well-known band, Tame Impala, with their song 'Mind Mischief'. This shows strong influences from early Pink Floyd and directly sets the tone for most of the album. It's definitely a song that grows on you.

Next up is 'Voice of the Seven Thunders - Kommune', a guitar-oriented psych-folk instrumental. From what I hear here, this band is rightfully added to PA, it's some real good, original music. Mind the bongo-rhythm and the guitar solos here.

Then there's 'Temples - Shelter Song'. This is quite simple pop song, and not one of my favorites. It has some fun parts, but it's nothing special really.

'Django Django - Hand of Man' is something different. It sounds very small and dark and has a very dreamy, repetitive rhythm. It's not really prog either, but it's a good song for sure.

'The Limañanas - Crystal Anis' has some very sensual male and female vocals with a very mellow rhythm and thick bass sound. It doesn't quite fit with the rest of the songs, and I don't really like it either, also because the vocals are in French...

'Moon Duo - Sleepwalker' has the electric guitar screaming through the whole song and something that sounds like a sitar doing some riffs. The chorus is very nice and makes this one of the better songs. There's also great guitar solos here.

It's followed by 'Toy - The Reasons Why'. This might just be my favorite of the album. There's dreamy vocals and a chorus melody which sounds like a mellotron and appears to have a slightly odd time signature, 15/16 I think. Great song.

'Unknown Mortal Orchestra - From the Sun' has some strong sound effects and guitars, which a create a kind of Sunday morning feeling. Very psychedelic.

'Psychic Ills - Mind Daze' is a little more upbeat and has prominent organ and guitar lines. Dark vocals, like most songs here, as well as multiple guitars in the background.

Then 'Animal Collective - Wide Eyed' brings a totally different mood. Controlled by manic electric sounds effects, this sounds very clinical, but it's also completely overwhelming. Just looking at vocals and rhythm, however this sounds like typical British Invasion music. It ends in repetitive strange sounds and eventually laughter. Yes, pretty weird.

'Teeth of the Sea - A.C.R.O.N.Y.M.' has a Space-Rock sound which would also fit early Pink Floyd, Hawkwind and the Ozric Tentacles. It's only the second instrumental, while most of the songs after this are instrumental as well. From here on, it also gets proggier, if that's a word.

'Wooden Shjips - Flight' has the last vocals on the album, as well as heavy bass and a spacey sounding instrument on which I can't really put my finger. It's a pretty repetitive song, more than most others, and it has great spacey solos from that strange instrument and the electric guitar.

'Mugstar - Sunburnt Impedance Machine' is very upbeat and aggressive song with even some Heavy Metal influences. In the end sirens come in make it sound even more outrageous. This is one of my favorites for sure.

'Zombi - Shrunken Heads' is again much calmer. Zombi is in PA as Progressive Electronic artist, and you can hear why. A calm electronic rhythm opens the song, and after around three minutes, slow orchestral synthesizer sounds come in. This goes on for most of the song, until only the electronic rhythm is left and fades away.

The last song is 'Carlton Melton - Photos of Photos'. Carlton Melton is also added to PA as Progressive Electronic, although this one is slightly different. It's very slow and has practically no rhythm. A bright soundscape just goes on for over six minutes. It tends to get boring after a while.

Echoes is only legally available when it comes with the Mojo Magazine of March 2013. If you don't read Mojo, you should probably order the magazine online or download the tracks individually, which I would recommend.

Echoes is certainly a nice compilation of enjoyable songs, but not at all a masterpiece or something. Not even all songs are quite that good, as this is mostly a practical way to represent the current psych-rock scene. Still, nice to have.

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 Scion A/V Presents: Label Showcase - Prosthetic Records by VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) album cover Live, 2012
3.00 | 1 ratings

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Scion A/V Presents: Label Showcase - Prosthetic Records
Various Artists (Label Samplers) Various Genres

Review by Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer

— First review of this album —
3 stars 'Label Showcase - Prosthetic Records' - Various Artists (5/10)

Instead of opting for each band's in-studio material, Prosthetic Records decided to demonstrate some of their fine younger bands by recording a live show and compiling some of the takes onto a sampler. Being a big fan of two of these bands and a casual fan of a third, it was a welcome bonus to get this label showcase free-of-charge at a Witch Mountain/Castle show late last year. Apart from Prosthetic Records being one of my go-to labels when it comes to promising new albums, Scion A/V has also had a pretty solid history so far, having released albums for Enslaved and Immolation. Given this amount of promise squeezed into it, I'm surprised how disappointing it turned out to be. Although the exclusive live material for each band makes it worth a checkout for bigger fans of any of the bands, there are many more flattering ways these bands could have been showcased.

The showcase doesn't get off to the greatest start; although The Greenery demonstrate some chops within their given genre, their style of punk-infused hardcore sounds adolescent to my ears, particularly with regards to the shouted/whined vocals.Scale the Summit and Last Chance to Reason are the two bands here that I liked quite a bit before even hearing about this showcase, and I've also had the good fortune of seeing both play live- LCTR when they played with Obscura in Vancouver, and Scale the Summit when they toured through Las Vegas with Dream Theater on the ProgNation '09 tour. With that in mind, I wasn't surprised at all to hear both of these bands offer some great cuts here. Scale the Summit's typically mellowed style is most spared by the recording quality, which is weak at best. Sadly, while Last Chance to Reason's guitars get through well enough, Mike Lessard's vocals come across as screechy and far weaker than when I saw him perform live. Although I had heard a few songs by Holy Grail in the past, most of my experience with them had been vicariously, through hearing others talk about them. Within the context of this showcase, they demonstrate the greatest live energy, but they're also hurt the most by the bootleg-quality recording standard. Although they don't seem to innovate the tried-and-true style of power metal they're playing, I don't get the impression that was their goal to begin with.

With a particular nod to Scale the Summit, the quality of performance and musicianship here is kept to a fairly high standard, and while I can say with some confidence that The Greenery do not fit my tastes in the slightest, I could imagine some others digging what they have to offer. Had it not been for the sound quality and lackluster live setting, I could have recommended this to someone on the prowl for some good new bands. Instead, this may be best left as an apocryphal release for fans of one band to look for if they go through all of the official recordings and still want more.

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 The Vertigo Trip by VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1971
3.90 | 2 ratings

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The Vertigo Trip
Various Artists (Label Samplers) Various Genres

Review by stefro
Prog Reviewer

4 stars A now very rare sampler issued by Vertigo during the early 'swirl' years, this features a fine selection of British underground acts. Included amongst the eclectic set-list are heavy rockers Black Sabbath circa the early years of their burgeoning career, Ian Carr's fusion greats Nucleus, who offer up the title track of their superb second album 'We'll Talk About It Later', and the country-inflected folk-rock whimsy of Daddy Longlegs and their infectious 'Gambling Man'. Its a highly enjoyable listen for those who appreciate the labels early-seventies output, though actual progressive rock is in short supply. Gentle Giant appear, well represented by their entrancing slow-burner 'Funny Ways', as do Gravy Train, Patto and The Keith Tippett Group, though special mention must be made of Catapilla, whose 'Promises' serves up a tantalising glimpse of their incendiary studio debut of a year earlier. However, the majority of 'The Vertigo Trip' highlights the growing diversity taking place at the label, and four sides of vinyl featuring a medley of sonic flavours ranging between folk, pop, country, prog, psychedelia and heavy rock. Despite Nirvana's 'Home' proving a little too stodgy, the the rest of this sample offers up yet more goodies, led the brazen proto-metal of Warhorse, who open the album with 'St Louis'. Aptly-named pub-rockers Legend lend the strut-blues of 'Hole In My Pocket', mystical folk legends Magna Carta appear with 'Time For Leaving' whilst there are some welcome nuggets from Graham Bond and Scottish symphonic-prog veterans Beggars Opera's (very) early days. So, all very good then but the problem, of course, is actually finding the album in the first place. 'The Vertigo Trip' is seriously rare(not that many copies were produced), though thankfully virtually every single track on this item can be found on Repertoire Records excellent series of special edition Vertigo album reissues, which features many albums by the groups listed here. However, if you do come across a copy of 'The Vertigo Trip', you should try your very best to get hold of it. It's a smartly-chosen selection, and manages to showcase just how many great acts Vertigo were producing during this great musical period. And who knows? Maybe one day even 'The Vertigo Trip' may enjoy a deserved reissue.... STEFAN TURNER, STOKE NEWINGTON, 2013

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Thanks to ProgLucky for the artist addition. and to easy livin for the last updates

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