I couldn't possibly say that this is the best version of the old MacLen chestnut (there are simply too many of them out there for me to ever hear them all), but it probably qualifies as one of the most original. Hyman's virtuoso keyboard skills were already quite reknowned, but on this album he tackled an entirely different animal...the harpsichord. On this track, he starts out using the harpsichord in a very conventional fashion, performing a baroque solo. About two-thirds of the way into the song, however, comes a drastic slowing of the tempo, the bass & drums come in and it mutates into a jazz trio arrangement! He even plays solos on the 'chord that make it sound like a Hammond organ...absolutely amazing!! Much of this album is rather difficult to listen to, but when it's good, it's sublime.
The Hellers were a group of L.A. ad agency people making a pop record, and it shows in this slick opener to their only album. I love the mellow pacing, the otherworldly early synths, and the so-corny-they're-good group vocals. Overall, it comes off like a weird, wonderful hybrid of '60s AM radio promos and mildly psychedelic pop.
from ... Singers...Talkers...Players...Swingers... & Doers (Command)
05 Feb 02 ·bobbyspacetroup: That is a cool song. Very cool. The song I've really grown to love from this album is "The Mist Of Time." It makes me wish The Hellers had done more stuff outside of advertising music.
The album that this track is taken from was one of those strange albums that acquired mythical status in my mind. Based on a mixture of rumor and personal imagination (I could never actually find a copy), I convinced myself that this must be the coolest album ever made, a perfect fusion of moog, latin and mod sounds. A few years later I picked up the album very cheaply on ebay. Beautiful and interesting as it is, many of the tracks go slightly over the line for me.
'Dansero' is the only track on the LP that captures the blend that I was looking for. It's nice and short at under 3 minutes, and features a delightfully kooky introduction that sounds like the Jean-Jacques Perrey moog flourishes that the group Stereolab sampled on their 'Transient Random Noise Bursts...' album. The drums and moog then join up for a nice pop instrumental, catchy and bouncy. Different moog effects are piled on, but always quite effectively, making this one of the most enduringly successful moog-pop tracks in my collection.
from Genuine Electric Latin Love Machine (Command)
Is it just me or are the original compositions on Command LPs almost always the best and most adventurous? Here is one my all-time favorite Command recordings. A far-out, moogy masterpiece by Hyman. It's about 8 minutes long, not nearly as pop as the rest of the record, and totally brilliant. According to the liner notes, Kolumbo was improvised on the Moog and the Maestro Rhythmaster, "a mechanical drum device," fed through a Echoplex-tape reverberation unit. Improvised Moog? Is that possible? This is very strange stuff. From the liner notes: "[...] there is an effect of a battery of African drummers following an improvised soloist. The listener can provide his own scenario of what seems to be a musical battle, as a second soloist abruptly materializes, challenging the first man. At the end, the original soloist states a brief epilogue, packs up his horn, and splits."