Gong - Flying Teapot (Virgin UK | May 1973)

Taken from The Strawberry Bricks Guide to Progressive Rock, here is an Album of the Week to enjoy and discuss.
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Gong - Flying Teapot (Virgin UK | May 1973)

Post by webmaster » Mon Apr 08, 2019 6:03 am

While 1971 had been a busy year for Gong (recording three albums), the band spent the majority of 1972 touring and then dealing with lineup changes. Drummers came and went, as did almost everyone else—except for Daevid Allen, Gilli Smyth and Didier Malherbe. In late 1972, the band attended a Kevin Ayers gig in France, where they were introduced to guitarist Steve Hillage. Ladbroke Grove's Tim Blake, around during Allen's Banana Moon sessions, was invited first as a soundman, before returning with a synthesizer. Ex-Magma bassist Francis Moze also joined up, while Laurie Allan returned long enough to play drums on the album. With Gong reconstituted, Allen penned the first installment of the Radio Gnome Invisible trilogy. Part mystic, thoroughly humorous and most certainly psychedelic, Flying Teapot is perhaps the ultimate manifestation of the Gong trip. On the surface, the cabaret of "Radio Gnome Invisible" is plain silly, but the slow-rising mantra rhythm of the title track is pure invocation. The opening lines of "The Pot Head Pixies" say it all: Allen's penchant for writing hilarious lyrics is as natural as his infectious melodies. Blake's "The Octave Doctors and the Crystal Machine" reveals his unique synthesizer talent as well as Malherbe's sublime alto sax, while "Zero the Hero and the Witch's Spell" broods under the much-overlooked rhythm section of Moze and Allan. Smyth's "Witch Song/I Am Your p&ssy" concludes in her own inimitable (and sexy) space whisper. All in all, the album remains one of the most consistent albums of the trilogy and a fan favorite, despite somewhat awkward production and substandard recording. Soon after the album was recorded, Allen and Smyth would temporarily take their leave to Majorca for parenthood, while further personnel changes would engage the band for the rest of the year. Gong were one of the first bands to be offered a contract with Richard Branson's new Virgin Records, though legal ties with BYG Records would dog them for years to come.

Source: http://strawberrybricks.com/guide/relea ... ble-part-1
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