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Tamam Shud - Live In Concert - July 2, 1972 CD (album) cover

LIVE IN CONCERT - JULY 2, 1972

Tamam Shud

 

Crossover Prog

3.08 | 3 ratings

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sl75
3 stars On the basis of their outstanding contributions to Morning Of The Earth, the Bali Waters EP, and a couple of tracks recorded for GTK (one available on the ABC release The GTK Tapes, and a few more floating around YouTube), I've speculated on what kind of prog masterpiece Tamam Shud would have released if they'd been able to record a full studio album in 1971-72..

This live album may the closest we'll ever get to hearing such. And while the never-recorded third Tamam Shud album would have been a very enjoyable listen, it seems 'prog masterpiece' would have been a big overstatement, if this is representative of what they would have recorded.

Originally a bootleg, given an official release 30 years later, this was recorded from the back of the venue on a portable cassette recorder, so naturally the sound quality is absolutely wretched. The credits say Duryea was there, but if so he's not audible - or maybe he's just been drowned out by Nigel Macara, who on this recording hits the drums too hard for my liking (fine in the harder rocking selections, not so appropriate in the folkier moments)

Anyway, there are 15 tracks. Only one, "Bali Waters", had been officially released at the time (another, "Bow Wow" has since surfaced - in a different live version - as a bonus track on the Aztec re-release of Goolutionites), and one is a cover, leaving 12 completely unknown Shud originals.

Early in the recording the mood is subdued, more psych-folk-like pointing to the direction of Bjerre & Barron's next band Albatross. Richard Lockwood, mostly playing flute, is the lead instrument during this segment - Tim Gaze's guitar playing at this point is tasteful but self-effacing. This segment culminates with "Bali Waters" (the first and most overtly proggy selection), before the band fires up into more of a rock space with Gaze's heavy blues "Bow Wow". From this point on Gaze is in full rock guitar hero mode, leaving less space for Lockwood. They follow with a blues cover before moving into a succession of harder-edged Bjerre compositions, most of which have a slight psych-prog edge - "The Air's So Thick I Lost My Home", "The Young Girl Who Wastes Her Time", "The Morning Song", and "A Book Among Magazines". The folk-jazz flavoured "The Afternoon Song" is the most progressive of the new songs, a great culmination of the set, before the concert winds down with the country-flavoured "I'll Be Gone (not the Spectrum song).

So here is is, the most complete collection yet of Tamam Shud's post-Goolutionites material. It points to their never-recorded third album being a most worthy successor to Goolutionites, but overall not living up to the higher promise of their Morning Of the Earth contributions. Nevertheless, it's a tragedy that they never had a chance to record all this material properly.

sl75 | 3/5 |

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