quality: lossless (flac, cue, log, covers, size: 233 mb)
Crack In the Cosmic Egg:
Eccentric and unique vocalist Walter Seyffer had fronted numerous bands during the 1960's. He claims to have established the Mannheim based Nine Days Wonder in 1966, then known as The Graves, who gradually transformed into Nine Days Wonder proper in February 1970. Walter got together an unlikely collection of musicians: a German (Henning), an Austrian (Mutschlechner), an Irishman (Earle) and an Englishman (Roscoe), to create a bizarre and fascinating rock fusion showing distinct Zappa and British underground rock influences.
Their debut LP, originally issued in a green foam rubber cover, but more widely known with the British Hipgnosis design, saw them present a music in the same field as Supersister or Moving Gelatine Plates, sans the Canterbury references. Nine Days Wonder were a distinctly Krautrock twist on the genre, radical, innovative and unpredictable. Featuring what was really only four tracks (two of them lengthy segued extravaganzas, full of bizarre unlikely diversions) Nine Days Wonder presented an exceptionally complex music featuring highly powered instrumentals, diversions into jazz fusion, high experimentation, and above all some of the most fascinating and eccentric songs on record. The vocal piece "Morning Spirit" has to be heard to be believed!
It's hardly surprising that the original Nine Days Wonder didn't last long, apparently falling apart during their first British tour. In fact Rolf Henning still lives in England to this day! Thus, searching for a new band, Walter met up with Michael Bundt's group Medusa, who agreed to join up and become a new incarnation of Nine Days Wonder. Paradoxically WE NEVER LOST CONTROL was very tame compared to the previous album, without the jazzy elements and instead being more richly textured and mellow progressive rock with hard-rock touches. It is still an excellent album though, when judged on its own merits.
In one sense, the third album ONLY THE DANCERS rectified some of the former album's shortcomings, with a return to Seyffer's eccentric and bizarre lyrics in some of the more dramatic longer tracks, and a wider instrumentation, but also featured a lot in the way of "bubblegum" pop, which was deemed catchy and fresh when I first heard it in the 1970's, but has now worn thin. A couple of luminary guests featured: Dave Jackson (Van der Graaf Generator) and Steve Robinson (ex-Twenty Sixty Six And Then).
As with most good rock bands, Nine Days Wonder caused their own fateful end by attempting to go commercial - a tactic that generally backfires - and SONNET TO BILLY FROST was a disaster! Michael Bundt went on to form mainstream rock bands Nerve and Marilyn, and later established a solo career as a synthesist. Walter went on to the pop duo Wintergarden.
01. Permillion Puppet Dance Square Hope... 15:49
02. Moss Had Come 3:27
03. Apple Tree 6:45
04. Drag Dilemma Monotony 1... 12:48
Walter Seyffer (vocals, drums, percussion, effects)
John Earle (vocals, tenor/soprano saxophones, flute, guitar)
Rolf Henning (guitar, piano)
Karl Mutschlechner (bass)
Martin Roscoe (drums)
Martin Lill (viola da gamba)