Caravan – For Girls Who Grow Plump in the Night (1973)

FrontCover1After the musical uncertainty of Waterloo Lily, Caravan returned with their most inspired recording since In the Land of the Grey and Pink. The splendidly titled For Girls Who Grow Plump in the Night is several steps ahead in terms of fresh musical ideas that wholly incorporate the band’s trademark humor within the otherwise serious and challenging sonic structures. Two of the more dominant reasons for the change in Caravan’s sound were the return of keyboardist Dave Sinclair and the addition of violist Peter Geoffrey Richardson. Die-hard fans gladly welcomed Sinclair back, however, Richardson was met with heckles from enthusiasts during live appearances. They were soon silenced as his place on For Girls Who Grow Plump in the Night easily ranks among Caravan’s watershed moments. There are perhaps none better than the mesmerizing counterpoint melodies he weaves during the “L’Auberge Du Sanglier” suite. While not completely abandoning their jazz leanings, For Girls Who Grow Plump in the Night is considerably focused back into the rock genre. Ironically, the album also features some rather elaborate orchestration. In context, it is quite effective in creating emphasis — especially on the leadoff track “Memory Lain, Hugh,” as well as the dreamy mid-tempo “The Dog, The Dog, He’s At It Again.”

Caravan1973The remastered CD also includes five additional tracks. The first four are demos featuring the band without orchestra and with some notable differences, such as the distinct lead guitar opening to “Memory Lain, Hugh.” “Derek’s Long Thing” is another instrumental piece penned by keyboardist Derek Austin — one of the two transitional Caravan members chosen to replace Steve Miller. A must-own for inclined parties. (by Lindsay Planer)

Richard Coughlan (drums, percussion)
Pye Hastings (vocals, guitar)
John G. Perry (bass, vocals, percussion)
Geoff Richardson (viola)
David Sinclair (keyboards, synthesizer)
Paul Buckmaster (electric cello on 07.)
Tony Coe (clarinet, tenor saxophone on 01.)
Jimmy Hastings (flute on 01.)
Rupert Hine (synthesizer on 01., 02. + 06.)
Pete King (flute, saxophone on 01.)
Harry Klein (clarinet, saxophone on 01.)
Henry Lowther (trumpet on 01.)
Jill Pryor (vocals on 05.)
Chris Pyne (trombone on 01.)
Frank Ricotti (congas on 02., 03., 05. + 07.)
Barry Robinson (piccolo on 01.)
Tom Whittle (clarinet, saxophone on 01.)
Orchestra arranged by John Bell and Martyn Ford, conducted by Martyn Ford

01. Memory Lain, Hugh / Headloss (Hastings) 9.19
02. Hoedown (Hastings) 3.20
03. Surprise, Surprise (Hastings) 4.07
04. C’thlu Thlu (Hastings) 6.15
05. The Dog, the Dog, He’s at It Again (Hastings) 5.58
06.a. Be Alright (Hastings) 2.30
06.b. Chance of a Lifetime (Hastings) 4.00
07.a. L’Auberge du Sanglier (Hastings) 1.00
07.b. A Hunting We Shall Go (Hastings) 3.27
07.c. Pengola (Perry) 0.55
07.d. Backwards (Ratledge) 3.53
07.e. A Hunting We Shall Go (reprise) (Hastings) 0.45
08. Memory Lain, Hugh / Headloss (US mix) (Hastings) 9.18
09. No! (Be Alright) / Waffle (Chance Of A Lifetime) (Hastings) 5.09
10. He Who Smelt It Dealt It (Memory Lain, Hugh) (Hastings) 4.42
11. Surprise, Surprise (Hastings) 4.42
12. Derek’s Long Thing (Coughlan/Hastings/Richardson/Austin/Evans) 10.57