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1975: And The Changes To Come

Orbit III

Here’s another obscure but not-undistinguished album of electronic retro-pop. This one has the double distinction of not only being synthesizer driven, but also leaning heavily on songs from the Beatles’ “White Album. Named after its primary instrument, Wurlitzer’s popular synth/organ combo (your church probably had one), Orbit III is actually producers Jerry Styner and Larry Brown. The back cover says that much. Little else is available on either this album or its players. The label, Beverly Hills, is still in operation, but they are much more interested in shilling for their own current product than shedding light on the obscurities in the dark, best-forgotten corners of their back catalog.

Songs Of Spiritual Uplift As Sung By Today’s Sounds

I put together “Songs Of Spiritual Uplift” back in 1996, shortly after it became apparent that the Meat Puppets were headed for a permanent hiatus. I still had some Nirvana money burning a hole in my pocket, so I made a few phone calls, dumped some gear into the back of my pickup, and made for the recording studio. For a couple years, I actually offered the four-song seven-inch EP on my Web site. I even sold one or two, believe it or not.

Les Humphires - Piano Concerto

We’re big fans of the Les Humphries Singers here at the Bostworld. Listening to the LHS is like mounting a helium-filled inner tube and sailing back in time, right over the the last 35 years of musical disappointment to a time when young singers would don funky futuristic costumes to sing in unison at their highest registers to up-tempo arrangements full of loud drums and frenetic full orchestras. If the original LHS canon ever comes out on CD, I’ll be queing up for my copies on day of release.

Archie Ulm At The Yamaha EX-42


According to the liner notes of this self-released album from 1975, Milwaukee keyboard prodigy and supper club circuit regular Archie Ulm “devastated the traditional concept of organ playing by inciting his audiences to stunning highs of musical awareness.” On this album, together with “two of the finest musicians in Milwaukee,” Ulm “creates the ultimate effect, challenging his instruments to go beyond their designed limits in contemporary pops and rhythm and blues.” Unfortunately, they didn’t challenge the limits of their budget, for the end result is markedly lo-fi. Some of the electronic sound effects sound exactly like compression artifacts.

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