The Purple Pinup Guru Platform

When purple things are pulsating on your mind, I'm the one whose clock you want to clean. Aiding is Sparky, the Astral Plane Zen Pup Dog from his mountain stronghold on the Northernmost Island of the Happy Ninja Island chain, this blog will also act as a journal to my wacky antics at an entertainment company and the progress of my self published comic book, The Deposit Man which only appears when I damn well feel like it. Real Soon Now.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

GURU: CASTING GIANT SHADOWS OFF VAST PP GURU PENETRATING FORCE!!


Relayer - arguably the best goddamn YES Album ever made, in the PP Guru's humble opinion. Spurned by chaos and Rick Wakeman's hasty departure following the direction that the band had undergone on Tales From Topographic Oceans, the previous double album of Eastern & Hindu inspired hijinks. All the hostility between the members of the band and Rick boiled down to this: Rick was in dire need of a simple steak dinner and a good german ale while everyone else wanted to convert to vegetarianism.

So Maestro Jon A had to find a new 'key' component to realize his dream of compacting Leo Tolstoy's War & Peace into a twenty minute plus piece of music called the Gates of Delirium. Jon Anderson met up a self taught keyboard player, Vangelis Papathanassiou while vacationing in Greece and pounded out his ideas on a piano to him, even though neither really had the technique to express their ideas- but that didn't deter Anderson from asking him if he would like to fill in Wakeman's slot. Not comfortable with the assignment, a agreement could not be reached at that time, but later on, Jon Anderson would collaborate with him on four album together as Jon & Vangelis while Jon took a sabbatical away from the band in the late seventies and early eighties.

So who would be able to fill in Rick's shoes and be become a keyboard rock star and a vegetarian practically overnight?

Enter the Swiss Poodle Spaceman: Patrick Moraz.


Moraz was recruited after stints showing off his jazz/rock fusion chops with the likes of Refugee and as Keith Emerson's replacement with the Nice when Emerson went off to form Emerson, Lake, and Palmer. Although not much as a soloist in his own right, the band found that he was more than capable of holding his own with his own palate of sound paddings with mellotrons and ARP synthesizers as well as demonstrating his own songwriting chops with the majority of ideas that went into his Chick Corea/Return to Forever influenced lead lines on Sound Chaser which featured more of that perfect Steve Howe sling shot guitar sound captured in the studio by Eddie Offord.

To the PP Guru, on the release date of December 5, 1974 this was Yes at their pinnacle; from the war torn duel between Moraz's battling keyboards to White's retaliating drums and percussion in the middle section of Gates of Delirium to the whimisical carnival barker tranqility of the strangely poetic To Be Over, it's material that's far reaching attitude than any rock band has ever attempted before. And like Tales From Topographic Oceans, it's also just as controversial and divided between fans and critics alike. The PP Guru feels that this album by the band really clinched the deal for him in getting his creative juices flowing. Each lyric line in Gates of Delirium was like a wake up call within the PP Guru wanting to pursue or formulate story ideas- because that's basically what Gates of Delirium was - a dystrophic fable of debauchery with a glimmering hope of redemption that would still hold true today as a legitimate soundtrack to this Bush Administration's Iraq debacle. The PP Guru was so enarmoured of this album that it influenced him to write poetry just like the cover painting provided by Roger Dean made Maestro Jon A's personal guru, Donald Lehmkuhl made him write this poem on the inside of the album cover:

Snakes are coiled upon the granite.
Horseman ride into the west.
Moons are rising on the planet
where the worst must suffer like the rest.

Pears are ripe and peaches falling.
Suns are setting in the east.
Woman wail, and men are calling
to the god that's in them, and to the beast.

Love is waiting for a lover.
generations kneel for peace.
What man lose, Man will recover
polishing the brains his bones release.

Truth conceals itself in error.
History reveals its face:
days of ecstasy and terror
invent the future that invents the race.

Donald Lehmkuhl
October 1974

Upon voraciouly devoured repeated listens, The PP Guru was motivated enough to write poetry of his own and got some of it published in a newspaper out of Nashville, TN that published nothing but poems when he was a junior and a senior in high school. The PP Guru can't exactly what the title of that publication was but he does remember that the poems titles were "Wear Your Face" & "the Wicker Field". The PP Guru is sure that the Office of Copyrights in Washington D.C. still has a record of it. But the PP Guru has the Relayer album to thank for that swift kick in the ass for that brief brush with being a teen-age author.


1974: When this album was originally released- the PP Guru remembers long lines at the gas pumps- just to get gas. Unlike the energy shortage, car lines to get gas today is only if it's CHEAP GAS. (hey, alright trading prices $ 70 a barrel- Thank you Hurricane Katrina and to you too Prez Diet Coke Dubya).

Bye Bye Dick, don't let those helicopter blades cut you in the ass on the way out when you officially resigned to public embarassment of lying after you got pinched and impeached real good. And a generation of cuthroats were not far behind you- look at laughing boy Rove today.

The PP Guru's favorite tv shows back in the day were Kolchak: The Night Stalker (being remade this season as The Nightstalker for ABC AND finally coming to DVD in October) and Planet of the Apes (already remade, fucked up, and put out to pasture by Tim Burton), a show that the PP Guru had to battle for his very life to watch because his half-sister insisted on always watching Little House on the Prairie. The Purple Pinup Mama Guru had to intervene and decreeded that we had to take turns alternating on Friday nights. The Brady Bunch and the Partridge Family didn't help matters either.


Marvel Comics jacked up a nickel to Twenty -five cents.

This was another of the PP Guru's all-time favorite series while growing up:


One major fickle about this nickel hike was that all the stories decreased in page count from twenty-pages to a lousy seventeen pages to make room for more ads (we also supposedly had a paper shortage back then also which was proven to be nothing more than Republician Jedi Mind tricks) - but Marvel somehow made up for it when they started to release Giant -size quarterly titles featuring the Avengers, Fantastic Four, Amazing Spider-Man (actually- it was nothing more than a larger version of Marvel Team-up), Defenders, Master of Kung-Fu, Conan the Barbarian, and The Man-Thing at 50 for double the pages - which featured a main story that ran thirty-fives pages in length plus reprints and inventory stories. They made car trips up to Rhode Island or Boston bearable when the PP Guru's stepfather, In sorely need of A Reality Check Roger would take him to visit his demented family- (more on the time when the PP Guru's step cousin stayed with him during the time when Yes's next album, Going for The One was released).

Line up: Jon Anderson- vocals, Steve Howe- guitars and backing vocals, Chris Squire- bass & vocals, Alan White- drums and percussion, Patrick Moraz- keyboards.

Favorite all time line (jeez, there's so many of them): The pen won't stay the demon's wings, the hour approaches pounding out the Devil Sermon. - Gates of Delirium (words and music written by Yes)

Holding doors will open everyway to:

~

Coat

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Relayer

Relayer

Album by Yes
ReleaseAugust-October 1974
RecordedNovember 29, 1974
Genre(s)Progressive rock
Length40 min 31 s
LabelAtlantic Records
ProducerYes and Eddie Offord
Professional reviews
Yes chronology
Tales From Topographic Oceans
(1973)
Relayer
(1974)
Yesterdays
(1975)

Relayer is the eighth album by the progressive rock band Yes. Recorded and released in 1974, it is the only album the band recorded with the featured line-up.

After the ambitious double-concept album Tales From Topographic Oceans, Rick Wakeman left Yes to continue his solo career. The band auditioned several prospective replacements, the closest contender being the Greek keyboardist Vangelis. (Although he did not become a member of Yes, these rehearsals paved the way for several future collaborations between Vangelis and Jon Anderson.) The band then chose Swiss-born Patrick Moraz as a replacement while this album was well into production.

<>Relayer has the same song format as 1972's Close to the Edge (a long epic on one side, and two relatively short pieces on the other), but a radically different musical style. "The Gates of Delirium" is a dense, 20-minute piece that was inspired by Leo Tolstoy’s War and Peace. It features lengthy improvisations by each member of the band, sometimes clashing intentionally with one another. Featuring lyrics about the futility of war, it remains one of the most musically aggressive songs ever produced by the band. The final section, in which the aggression of the previous 15 minutes is suddenly replaced by a gentle melody and a lyrical prayer for peace, was released as a US single under the title "Soon" in early 1975. "Sound Chaser" is a jazzy, mostly instrumental piece that echoes King Crimson. "To Be Over" is the gentlest piece on the album, and features complex, melodic arrangements of guitar and sitar.

Relayer features artwork by Roger Dean who produced an album cover layout similar to Fragile with two additional paintings and a photograph of the band inside the fold-out sleeve. The cover was later used in a Pepsi-Cola ad, as the T-shirt worn by Shakira.

The critical reaction to Relayer, coming after a predecessor that many felt went over the breaking point, was lukewarm. However, it was still a commercial success.

Track listing

All songs by Jon Anderson/Chris Squire/Steve Howe/Alan White/Patrick Moraz.

  1. "The Gates Of Delirium" - 21:50
  2. "Sound Chaser" - 9:26
  3. "To Be Over" - 9:06

Relayer (Atlantic K 50096) reached #4 in the UK. It also reached #5 in the US during a chart stay of 16 weeks.

Relayer was remastered and reissued in 2003 with several bonus tracks.

Personnel

Sources

  • Relayer, CD booklet essay, Doug & Glenn Gotlieb, c.2003
  • AllMusicGuide.com
  • "Top Pop Albums 1955-2001", Joel Whitburn, c.2002
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Aside - Sparky never did “Jan Brady” and he'll live.

2 Comments:

  • At 11:46 PM , Anonymous cialis said...

    I, of course, a newcomer to this blog, but the author does not agree

     
  • At 4:09 PM , Blogger Cary said...

    And what exactly is it that you don't agree with?

     

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