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Matching Mole - Little Red Record CD (album) cover

LITTLE RED RECORD

Matching Mole

 

Canterbury Scene

3.91 | 167 ratings

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Walkscore
4 stars Unique Classic. Close to 5 Stars!

This Fripp-produced album is a unique statement. Loosely framed as a quasi-concept album built around the idea of a 'Little Red Record' (like Mao's Little Red Book) this is an album/band that doesn't take itself too seriously, yet like the Softs, was somewhat revolutionary in a musical sense (and with some thoughtful commentary by Wyatt about socialism too!). It is really too bad it was to be there last studio album, and the last studio album before Wyatt's accident, and there is so much potential here, and Wyatt really shines. The album begins extremely well. An intro with unique (yes!) singing that leads into "Marchides", a short but amazing tune built around fast-cascading electric piano runs up and down the keyboard, with bass and guitar playing slow melodic lines over top, while Wyatt drums up a storm. The rest of side 1 involves three compositions with some complex lines (particularly on McRae's "Brandy as in Benj") but otherwise built around improvisations over repeated chord progressions, with excellent solos from McRea (piano) and McCormick (fuzz bass). "Gloria Gloom", the firs tune on side 2, is amazing - beginning with ethereal synth bells ala Tangerine Dream/Eno but then leading to a Canterbury-style classic of Wyatt's (where he ruminates about the socialist cause). Henry Cow would cover this tune in the middle of their "Beautiful as the Moon..." suite, which can be heard on the Henry Cow 'Concerts' album. Following this is "God Song", which is one of Wyatt's humourous yet simultaneously poignant solo pieces. Excellent and unique (you have to hear it)! (Another version of this song can be heard on the Wyatt solo collection 'Solar Flares Burn for You', which is also excellent). The rest of side 2 of the album involves band improvisations, with "Flora Fidgit" fading out and into "Smoke Signals". This is what the Softs might have sounded like without Ratledge but if Wyatt had remained. I like it better than the first Matching Mole album. I consider this an essential album for anyone who likes or is interested in the Canterbury sound. Very innovative. I actually give it 8.9 out of 10 on my 10-point scale, which is 0.1 away from 5 PA stars.

Walkscore | 4/5 |

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