Here’s a world-class Rock group that whenever I’d be thumbing through my LPs and see it; it got played.
Rumplestiltskin is the classic example of a band that very few even knew existed. Another band whose record company’s handling of them was apparently tragic.
Shel Talmy, the producer of the Who and the Kinks (during their early successful years) whose heavy influence with the Who created a historic recording, “My Generation,” has this to say: “I produced a band called “Rumpelstiltskin”, which was a put-together band of very good session guys, and we almost made it with that one. We had a whole concept. We were going to do a comic strip and all kinds of stuff. It was really a fun thing. And good songs, great music, ’cause these guys really could play. That went on Bell Records, [who] just totally screwed the whole thing up.
It was really unfortunate. We made two albums that I was very pleased with; that I think should have made it.”
And so do I.
I’ll admit that being an LP and Tape Rack Jobber and Record Store Manager allowed me access to just about anything and when I saw the comic book cover I was certainly curious – and Shel Talmy’s name as producer sealed the deal. One listen to this absolute gem of a record and I was hooked! Every cut is really, really great – big chunks of guitar with monster hooks and slabs of hot, hot Hammond organ with a commanding soulful voice soaring through it all unscathed. Really solid unique meaty tracks!
Take the first track; classic hooks, transitions and totally hip and cool passages – at a little past six minutes it sounds as though Keith Emerson dropped-in for a bit. This track alone demands repeat listenings – plus – this is the “Gateway Drug” song for the rest of the LP, if you like it you’ll love the rest.
“I have done a lot of thinking about what sort of liner notes should be put on this album and came to the conclusion that nothing would really be adequate. So I’m leaving it to you, the listener, to judge for yourself.” (Shel Talmy)
Andrew Balmain (Alan Parker) (guitar)
Rupert Baer (Clem Cattini) (drums, percussion)
Jeremy Eagles (Alan Hawkshaw) (keyboards)
Peter Charles Greene (Peter Lee Stirling) (vocals)
Jackson Primrose (Herbie Flowers) (bass)
01. Make Me Make You (Hawkshaw/Parker/Greene) 6.17
02. Poor Billy Brown (Hawkshaw/Parker/Greene) 8.12
03. Knock On My Door (Hawkshaw/Parker/Greene) 2.41
04. No One To Turn To (Hawkshaw/Parker/Greene) 3.29
05. Mr. Joe (Witness For The Defence) (Hawkshaw/Parker/Cameron) 6.50
06. Pate De Foie Gras (Hawkshaw/Parker/Cameron) 2.50
07. Rumplestiltskin (Hawkshaw/Parker/Cattini/Flowers) 3.29
08. Squadron Leader Johnson (Hawkshaw/Parker/Greene) 4.50