Thursday, August 31, 2006


The Tears of a Clown

Viv Stanshall - Men Opening Umbrellas Ahead

I wasn't ready for this album when I first heard it. I'm still surprised every time I listen to it, even though I know what to expect.

You see, I'm a big Bonzos fan. Especially, I'm a big Viv songs by the Bonzos fan. And I expected this album to be one long jokey Viv song. Not so.

Viv is kind of unhappy for a lot of this disc. Maybe bitter. Certainly incoherent. This is not a joyous romp, by any means.

I see this record as a bit of a piece with Lucky Leif and the Longships. Both are by notoriously eccentric guys who ended up pretty well over the edge soon after. And both are absurdly diverse when it comes to the stylistic shifts from song to song. This is better than the Calvert one, though.

This is a traded copy from the halycon days of Napster, when 128 was just great. I've been holding out for a better copy, but none is forthcoming. What do you want for nothing, a rubber biscuit?

Note: check the comments, as a generous reader put up a version in better quality.

Thankyouthankyouthankyou for the Stanshall. I've been wanting to hear this one for twenty years.
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Just uploaded a 256 version for ya.

It's a bit crackly here and there, cos it's taken from good old fashioned vinyl.
I hope it will suffice.
I've also got Teddy Boys Don't Knit & Rawlinson's End if you're interested.
Shame it takes eons to upload the files though

Check out the Retro Vinyl website for 1000's of rare and hard to find vinyl & help an honest record dealer to survive!
Great post, thanks for sharing
I like this blog! You make an autentic feel too it! Your music is very nice
Finally listened to this one last week. I take back what I said about Arthur Brown being the British Beefheart. This one could be the real deal.
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