Monday, 2 November 2015

The People's Victory Orchestra and Chorus - The School [1972], album review

Well, It Was the Seventies...

I am listening to rather esoteric, often private-pressed early 70s music at the moment, some of which I will review, and this Queens Village, New York ensemble is wonderfully weird. Indeed, as I type this, I am listening to their second album Weltschmerzen [1973] where the opening 8 minute track  Memories - including Kennebec Chatter, The Fair, Dancehall Days and Others is silly-brilliant.

The School begins with three amazing tracks - often with young children joining in, or not, among the screams and random instrumentation - which are Super Music Man, Songbird of the South and Ballet for a Small Apartment, and the superb female vocal - probably Carla Lund from what I can find out - is on the first raw roaring rock; is on the second refined rock, and is on the third operatic rock. An astonishing range. Birds chirp on the second, by the way. The third is orchestral as it progresses with a range of off-beat [literally] percussion.

Fourth Waiting at the Theatre is quite a soulful number with fuzzed guitar; fifth Children's Anthem - Let Us Sing a Love Song begins with kids coughing in what sounds like a large auditorium [one assumes they are gathered in a large space, and there are echos] and it is then a rather upbeat, jolly, piano thumped and whistle tooted stereotypical kid's chorus song.

The rest is various acid folk, raw folk and psychedelic folk type ensemble offerings: quite raw and with an occasional tuba. Even vaudeville, or is that chamber orchestra?

Black Crow Country is quite rocky, and has crows cawing.

Great fun.

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