While discussing music with my good friend Dana Madore the other night, I hit upon the idea of being “Finished with…” artists. Even as a youngster, I “Finished” with artists rather quickly. Did I get bored? Or react badly to too much popularity?
I was a huge Yes fan at the time of “The Yes Album” and “Fragile”. I even bought “Yessongs” (triple LP set) as soon as it was released, but…I never got around to buying “Close To The Edge” at the time, and then – the bomb: “Tales from Topographic Oceans” – to quote countless burn-out mumblers, “I couldn’t wrap my head around it!”. Still can’t.
Not so long ago, I detailed my purchasing of “Paranoid” by Black Sabbath something like 7 times – and I leapt onto “Master of Reality” as a Vertigo original UK LP, complete with reverse Vertigo inner sleeve! But I never made it to “Vol. 4”, for some reason. Actually, I know exactly why: German rock bands! By ’72, I was attempting to submerge my brain in Neu, Cluster, Can, Faust, Amon Duul II etc.
I love The Who. “Happy Jack / A Quick One” and “The Who Sell Out” are two of the greatest records ever made, and I’m not kidding. I can still actually hang with “Tommy” – especially the 2CD deluxe edition that was an SA-CD with startlingly good audio! I bought (and kept) “Live At Leeds”. I officially joined the 70’s my buying and keeping “Who’s Next” – truly a record of my mis-spent youth. But “Quadrophenia” stuck in my throat like an unwanted bone. I don’t think I’ve ever listened to it all the way though, even! (I did see the film on an early visit to England, and I’m OK with it). Truth is, I didn’t think much of the latter day Keith Moon Who, but I did try and listen – once Keith Moon died. Never went back to ”Quadrophenia”, though – and I do own nice copies – a Track Record UK original and a lovely Track Record via Sony Japan 2LP massive top pressing edition.
So, were you ever all gung ho on something – only to cool off a bit later on? Yes, it happens in the music universe, I assure you: 3rd Ian Dury & The Blockheads LP? Can albums without Holger Czukay? P.F.M. after they changed to sounding like The Police? Non-psychedelic Eric Clapton? Anything after the 3rd Buzzcocks LP? Jethro Tull after “Thick As A Brick”? Emerson, Lake & Palmer after “Pictures At An Exhibition”? The Rolling Stones after “Exile” but before “Some Girls”? Any Moody Blues LP after 1972? Post-WEA Zappa? The Monkees without Mike Nesmith? Caravan after “For Girls Who Grow Plump In The Night”? Post-WEA Curved Air? The Nits without Michiel Peters? The Pop Mechanix without Andrew Snoid? The Plastics without Chica Sato? Any post-“Red” King Crimson release? Genesis without Peter Gabriel? Post-Virgin Mike Oldfield? Etc.
So all of these revelations are the blueprint of my soul – for better or worse. If you put your mind to it, I bet you can name a few more items in this train of thought…