Cincinnati Babyhead

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Album : McDonald and Giles

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Man is this a cool record.  CB just loves the sound of it.  I came in through the King Crimson window for this one. Opening track has such a super cool vibe.  Like they were so confident they were playing the coolest music in the world.  They take it to a great jam, with a real jazz feel.  Love the Giles brothers on drums and bass.  Just the music they come up with.  Their own style.  The changes they take the cut through.  Didn’t hurt that Steve Winwood was involved.  Ian McDonald is all over it with some flute and his sax riff just tops it off.  Loved the distorted vocals and technique they used.  There was a light humorous feel to it.  This first cut grabbed me and I was in for more.  Ends on a nice little jam.

The next cut continued to draw me in with their sound.  Something Babyhead really couldn’t put his finger on other than he was digging the music they were making. ‘Tomorrows People’ is such a cool tune. Great groove with some great vocals.  Drums (Love Michael’s drumming) and bass lay it down and the horns give it a punch.  Good drum solo with a flute also taking a good one.  The bass also laying it down.  Jazz/rock/funk I guess.  They get into a good jam here.  Lots of tempo changes and then back to the opening riff.  This music was doing it for me.  Felt good.

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Side two continues the trip with ‘Birdman’ taking up the whole side.  This is what CB dug about listening to albums. Musicians like these stretching out and creating original unique music that was coming from their inspiration (Wholly shit CB is getting long winded on this one). Again there are lots of changes in this music.  Some jazzy funky breaks with sax, drums and bass at the fore front then going off in a completely different direction.  No rules or restrictions on themselves. Ian McDonald’s multi instrumental talent really shines. His sax and flute work are top notch. Really liked the whole package. McDonald and Giles take us out with big sound at the end of the record.  Good stuff.

I just put this album on and went for their musical ride (Head phones don’t hurt)..  Some music just grabs me and this was music that did that.  Something “feel good” about it for me. Albums like this were proof that the commercial/popular world was hiding the good stuff on me.  This is one of my favorite albums.  Proof that KC wasn’t all Robert Fripp.  These  guys gave the first few Crimson albums a lot of their sound.

It fast  became one of my favorite albums.  A CB gem. Very cool fold out cover as a bonus. CB highly recommends this to himself all the time. Glad I found it.

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24 comments on “Album : McDonald and Giles

  1. Aphoristical
    April 15, 2018

    Interesting, should check this one out sometime.

    Liked by 1 person

    • cincinnatibabyhead
      April 15, 2018

      I think we talked about ‘The Cheerful Insanity Of Giles , Giles and Fripp’ on your King Crimson takes, well this is just more of the Giles thing but with McDonald. I love it. I know you like the pop thing. I think these guys could have went in that direction if they chose. They write some very catchy hooks and have an easy vibe at times.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Aphoristical
        April 15, 2018

        I don’t think I’d even heard about this one. McDonald wrote a lot of the first King Crimson album I think?

        Like

  2. christiansmusicmusings
    April 15, 2018

    I had never heard of this album before – it sounds very intriguing! Unfortunately, it’s not in Apple Music but one can listen to the entire record on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LMff9CM7yPU

    Like

  3. J.
    April 15, 2018

    Another I should check out… gonna stop doing this to me!!

    Like

    • cincinnatibabyhead
      April 15, 2018

      We kinds send each other on these discoveries. You gotta like it. I can’t remember if you were or are a Crimson fan.

      Liked by 1 person

      • J.
        April 16, 2018

        I haven’t heard too much, but I like what I’ve heard!

        Liked by 1 person

      • cincinnatibabyhead
        April 16, 2018

        A definite sound of their own. One of those records for me that just appeals to my ear.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Vinyl Connection
    April 16, 2018

    I have a fondness for this album too. There are some terrific parts on it and I’m delighted to be reminded of its virtues. Though I’m not sure it really is first division prog, falling a little short of greatness. Beaut reading about it again though, CB!

    Liked by 1 person

    • greenpete58
      April 16, 2018

      I don’t know, VC, I’d place this overlooked gem in the first-division Prog category. It continues the softer “I Talk to the Wind” feel from the first Crimson album, but that’s a good thing, in my opinion. Robert Fripp WAS King Crimson, but if you look at the credits on that first KC album, Ian McDonald wrote most of the music. He was very underrated. I’m glad he made some money with Foreigner, but man, what a creative plunge!

      Liked by 2 people

      • Vinyl Connection
        April 16, 2018

        Was I too hasty, Peter? Haven’t played it for quite a few years. And I first heard it when I was in thrall to Lark’s Tongue, compared to which it seemed kind of old had. But times and opinions change – and so they should. These days i even love Prince Rupert Awakes!

        Liked by 1 person

      • greenpete58
        April 16, 2018

        I have “McDonald and Giles” in my collection, but haven’t listened to it in years (may do so tonight!). I remember “Larks Tongues” – in fact, most Crimson after the 2nd LP – as being very dense and jagged. “McDonald and Giles” is just the opposite: ethereal, melodic, and still couched in ’60s hippie-dippie sweetness. So, yeah, it’s probably “old hat,” but a great vehicle for time machine travel!

        Liked by 2 people

      • cincinnatibabyhead
        April 16, 2018

        ‘For those who want the sun to shine on everyone”. I love that lyric from ‘Tomorrow’s People’ . Kinda has a nice ring to it. Hop on the old “Time machine” and enjoy the listen.

        Liked by 1 person

      • cincinnatibabyhead
        April 16, 2018

        We came into KC at the same stage. Like you I went back into the vaults and found all sorts of good music KC style. Did you get a copy of ‘Cheerful Insanity”? I liked that one also. Big shift from ‘Larks’ but I was in discovery mode. My neighbors liked the softer touch rather than the big loud scary sound from some of Larks that I was pumping out of my speakers.

        Liked by 1 person

      • cincinnatibabyhead
        April 16, 2018

        “Overlooked gem”, yup. I had no idea of the Foreigner connection. Shows how in the know I am. Yeah on the money thing but that music never moved me. Same McDonald?

        Like

      • greenpete58
        April 16, 2018

        Yep, same McDonald. It’s nice that he found success, but I can’t stand Foreigner.

        Liked by 1 person

      • cincinnatibabyhead
        April 16, 2018

        No wonder I never connected the dots. Never listened to Foreigner other than by accident.. He cashed in I guess. That’s quite a leap musically.

        Like

    • cincinnatibabyhead
      April 16, 2018

      I figured you’d be on top of this one. Like I said the album just had something that really appealed to me. It was a side bar to all that music I was listening to. I think I mentioned Pete Sinfield’s ‘Still’ to you before. I found that one enjoyable also. These are albums that I listened to a lot and that struck a chord in CB’s noggin.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Vinyl Connection
        April 18, 2018

        Having listened to M and G two or three times in the past couple of days, I have probably softened a little towards it. But really, I think your description of this (and similar albums like ‘Still’) as ‘sidebar’ records hits the nail precisely on the head. They’re interesting, enjoyable, but not quite ‘core curriculum’.
        Now, where’s that Pete Sinfield…

        Liked by 1 person

      • cincinnatibabyhead
        April 18, 2018

        It’s a very catchy record and a good listen . The “sidebar” is where some nice surprises come in. That’s how I found so much good music. I have a copy of ‘Still’ that I still haven’t opened. I listened to that record a lot. Time for a 2018 spin.
        Not that I’m doubting our friend Green Pete but that Foreigner thing was a surprise to me. Do they have anything that appealed to Bruce?

        Like

  5. Jim S.
    April 16, 2018

    Never even came close to hearing of these guys. I’m going to be spinning some stuff tonight so I’ll give these tunes a listen.

    Liked by 1 person

    • cincinnatibabyhead
      April 16, 2018

      Kinda far from the blues but I was digging this stuff back in the day. Like VC says , some “terrific parts”. CB’s like a broken record, this album just got to me.

      Like

  6. 1537
    April 18, 2018

    Totally new music to me, I will check it out.

    Liked by 1 person

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