Σκαλίζοντας ένα σκληρό που αρχίζει να τα φτύνει με συνέπεια να έχω χάσει τον ύπνο μου μέχρι να γίνει κε νέου κανένα back up, έπεσα πάνω σε αυτό το αρχείο με το γκρουπ. Σκάλισα επίσης το νετ για κάποιες αναφορές στο δίσκο τις οποίες καταθέτω.
Επίσης βρήκα φωτογραφίες του γκρουπ που μάλλον δεν υπάρχουn εύκολα στο νετ τις οποίες έβαλα στο αρχείο.
1) This LP collects together previously unissued recordings from 1969/70 by an Essex-based (Yes!!!) 5-piece who grew from the ashes of The Cymbaline / Cymbeline and The Flies. Musically, their material encapsulates the wonderful "progressive pop sound"- post-Psych but pre-Prog Rock. Hammond organ, a funky rhythm section, superb guitar and beautiful Mirage-style harmony vocals. The opener, 'Venetian Glass', is an absolute treasure- floating and ethereal, yet with some real punch. Most of the tracks are self-penned but among a few covers there are sterling takes on 'Pattern People' and 'Taxman'. Other highlights include 'Space Shanty' (not the Khan song), 'Same Girl' and 'Time Keeper'. A fascinating glimpse into the exploits of a genuinely talented underground band. An essential purchase and beautifully presented, both aurally and visually.
2) The band were formed from the ashes of two legendary UK psyche bands The Flies and Cymbaline. They formed in 1969 and went for a more progressive sound than they had peddled before, but for the opening track 'Venetian Glass' it seems like they were still doing the psyche/pop stuff, good though it is. 'Space Shanty' is better, with the Hammond underpinning some nice guitar-work on a Procol Harum sounding rocker. 'Same Girl' is a nice ballad with a heavy guitar solo, and these three songs are probably the best on the album. Next up is a cover of George Harrison's 'Taxman' followed by '(I'm In Love With) A Girl Like You' which is 60's soul and 'I've Got You Under My Skin' which is so authentically done that you would swear it was a 60's harmony pop band like The Assocaition.Time Keeper
*The History Behind This Song
Timekeeper was one of the songs written by me for Infinity, a progressive rock band, (or a PRB as our drummer Phil would have it,) who most frequently resided on this planet, but however did suffer from the hallucinogenic and addictive effects of too much curry and lager and were known to visit seedy curry dens in the East End of London far too often.It was no surprise then that in early 1969 they decided to start work on a album exploring the subjects of time, space, matter, energy and chicken phal, said in some circles to be so culinarily hot it's temperature approached infinity!As it turned out the band split up amid arguments and even physical violence, not because of the usual musical differences, rather because they could not come to an agreement over the exact nature of string theory. I personally had always been an advocate of Ernie Ball 'Regular Slinky' guitar strings, but some of the others still favoured the 'Super Slinky' variation; in error I felt.The album project was thus abandoned. Now myself and Phil, the original drummer and the main songwriter of the band, after 37 years of wrangling inconclusively, have decided to put our scientific differences aside for the good of the band and are starting work on a new project called 'Infinity Regenesis', which is an attempt to re-capture the spirit of those times and that dream we both had when we were young men, but with lots of new material and a new vitality. That is if Phil's bad back clears up and I can get my blood pressure under control and my kidneys can last out another year or two before they wave the white flag or simply jump ship.I've actually rescued 4 tracks from the original album dating from 1969 - that's the year of Woodstock for all you kids out there. What do mean 'What's a wood stock? Is that something to do with shotguns?'No Einstein, der... It was a defining moment in Rock & Roll history! People in their thousands flocked to Woodstock, which is just outside Leicester, I think, with fluffy clouds and a big water-fall and we all had a real good vibe, man...It was also there where I met my first wife. We laughed a lot! Great sense of humour as I remember her...I think it was my wife anyway; I suppose it could have been someone else's wife. I'm CERTAIN I went to Woodstock though. It may have been The Isle of What’s name, thinking about it. I do remember Jimi Hendrix jamming on Race with the Devil, which no doubt pleased Adrian. Oh yes, he could certainly play the piano that guy!It was The Isle of What’s name for sure. Now I think about it, she wasn't my wife at all. Who the hell was she then? She must have been SOMEBODY'S wife, because I remember her telling me she'd bought her wedding ring from a gypsy on Brighton beach. To tell you the truth, I was pretty much out of it that year...
* The Lyrics to Timekeeper *
Ever since the beginning the Timekeeper had planned,
A Universal breakdown at the drop of a hand,
In a flash there was no-one, nothing learned, nothing said,
There's no proof of existence, not alive, never dead…
Say goodbye to your future, you might miss your past,
Now even space is broken, the present won't last,
In a flash it was over, was it all in the mind?
Proof you ever existed, you may never find…
There was no time to make seconds,
To make minutes make an hour,
Turning years into tears,
Now was then, then is now.
Now they see the illusion with the eyes of a child,
And amid the confusion, the Timekeeper he smiled,
I'm the power of creation, life and death, rise and fall,
I am life, I am legend, I'm time, I am all.
The *History Behind This Song *
This song is called Venetian Glass. It was another of the songs performed by Infinity in 1970 for the planned ‘Science? Fiction!’ album. This is the original recording made in 1969 which features the vocal performance and Hammond organ playing of the band's keyboardist John DaCosta, who also wrote this particular song. The other people playing on this record are Phil Chesterton on drums and vocals; myself, Brian Gill on guitar and vocals and Ian Baldwin on bass.This recording was made during the time Stuart Calver was in the band, but he wasn’t on any of the originals, except Same Girl, which he sung. He was brought in to the band originally to improve the vocal range of the band, which he did by not only singing some of the lead vocals, but also adding another level of harmony to the sound. It was also useful that he had a green Baldwin 12 string guitar (which I ended up buying myself) and on which he could play Byrds-like rhythms to thicken up the sound on some numbers.Stuart had a much sought after high-tenor voice. I remember when certain pieces of classical music, operas, arias etc. came on the radio (we used to listen to BBC Radio 3 in those days), Stuart would send up the vocalists with a parody of a classical voice and hit all the high notes in a way that would make the rest of us wince and clutch our groins!The production of this song is very much of its time and belies the fact that the band was a fairly heavy sounding, typical British rock band. Notice the way that John pronounces some of the words in a Colin Blunstone-esque English accent. John was really an East End boy like the rest of us, but this was an honest attempt at not trying to sound like a Yank, which of course was frowned on by English progressive rock bands in those days. The 3-part vocal counterpoint harmony break in the middle of the song is worthy of note. It sounds to me like it came from 'flower-power' American influences like the Mamas & Papas and Association.Although none of us were really singers in the Rod Stuart sense of the word, we did know a bit about harmony and our stage act included cover versions of songs like McArthur Park and the Beach Boys' Breakaway. We were basically a 3-part vocal rock band (4 part when on the rare occasions that Ian our bass player could be persuaded out of his comfort zone), which could be fairly heavy and could swing quite a bit too.John, Ian and myself were renewing an association we’d had in another British cult band of the time, when in 1967-8 we had all played in the Flies with the legendary vocalist and drummer Robin Hunt, who did a solo stint as 'Alexander Bell'. The venture may not have been a raging success, but at least it got Rob on the telly! Robin used to be the drummer of the band and was one of the founder members of the Flies.We brought in drummer Peter Dunton in early 1968 to relieve Robin of the job of being front man and drummer, as anybody who knew Robin realised that he was born to be a front man and had no chance of confining his contribution to the band to being part of the rhythm section! Pete was also the vocalist and drummer who would of course go on to form the seminal British cult rock band T2 and release the famous ‘It Will All Work Out In Boomland’ album, which featured Pete writing and also singing all the songs. Post Flies, Pete also had a stint with ‘Gun’ with the infamous Gurvitz brothers Paul and Adrian, who would both go on to do great things and be successful in Los Angeles, where they both now live.The other half of the Infinity story is that Phil and I both used to be in the Cymbaline in 1965-6 in which band I played bass. Phil also did an album with the Flies even before they changed their name to the Flies and were known as Insect, which was also before my time with the band. Flies was also an abbreviation; it started off as 'There Are No Flies On Us, But You Can See Where They've Been', which of course I thought was another one of Rob's brainwaves, but it was coined by George Hayward, the Flies guitarist whom I replaced. The name was modified to simply ‘Flies’ by Decca, the record company who released the band’s first single, I’m not your stepping stone’, which was also done by The Monkeys on the other side of the pond.They started life as In-Sect in early 1965, the year they got an opportunity to make an album of cover versions. Robin had a very serious illness which was eventually to kill him and this was the start of it and so Phil stepped in to cover for him on drums and did the whole album with them with John Hollis of The Cymbaline doing the vocals. I believe that Stu Calver was also on the album in some capacity, probably vocal backing.I left the Cymbaline in November 1966 to be replaced by none other than Stuart Calver and joined 'The Fingers’, an offbeat jug-rock band from Southend in Essex, after first doing a stint in 'The Impact' Germany playing the US Air Force and Army bases around Mainz and Stuttgart with Lloyd Courtenay, who was also the drummer in 'The Fingers' and these days still plays with the Barron Knights. The guitar of Impact was a chap called Mick Rogers. Mick was a very good guitarist/singer in the Steve Winwood mould, who went on to play guitar with the Manfred Mann band. With Lloyd, Mick and I the band backed a young Helen Shapiro in her cabaret and night club act, which was a very pleasant experience.Phil soldiered on with the Cymbaline for another two years after I left the band. His life was becoming more and more wretched and non-musical as time progressed and reached a nadir with the inclusion in their set of ‘I Wanna Be Like You’, the Disney song from the film Jungle Book which had singing gorillas and dancing bears. The point was that they needed somebody to make a pillock of themselves and dress up in a monkey suit and come out to the front of the stage and ham it up. Of course it had to be Phil! (Stuart Calver played the drums in his absence).With his characteristic cheerfulness and can-do attitude and the fact that Phil always could do a very credible impression of a monkey, he was a natural for the job and the number became a big success in their act. Phil was to continue in the ‘monkey’ role, which I believe that despite his frequent suicide attempts and severe depression, he secretly enjoyed, until March 1969, when he left the band. The Cymbaline drafted in Joe Dormer, another old mate and the original drummer with Joey and the Teens. Joe was also a very good drummer, but his talent stopped short of being a credible monkey, so in a way it was the end of an era when Phil left the band and The Cymbaline eventually split up completely several months later.Meanwhile, Phil and I met up one night also in March 1969 and decided to form a thoroughly musical project which became Infinity. By chance, the Flies had at that time also split up; Robin formed a band called Bulldog Breed with Pete Dunton and John and Ian were temporarily out of work and so were approached by Phil and me to join Infinity, as we’d decided to call the new band. The name was a result of us both being heavily into science fiction books and the writing of Robert Heinlein and Arthur C. Clark and others.The irony is that after some months, Infinity decided that we needed a feature number to give the set some relief and to lighten the mood and we decided to do the old Beach Boys' number 'Monster Mash', for which we needed someone to dress up as a Frankenstein monster, bolt-through-the-neck etc and come out the front of the stage and sing the song in a ‘scary monster’ style, complete with dysfunctional stiff arm and leg movements. We of course chose Ian for the job! He was bigger than the rest of us and made an admirable monster. We found him a big pair of boots and an old overcoat and bought him a rubber monster-head to wear.We sometimes had problems with drunks and wallies down the front of the stage, who would keep setting light to him with their cigarette lighters, which seems a lot funnier now than it did at the time, but it was a success in our act as well.We also did a another feature song where Ian came out dressed as a builder's labourer, carrying a shovel, with muddy boots on and wearing a handkerchief with four knots on his head, complete with a big metal 'Men at Work' sign that we'd nicked on the A1 whilst coming back from a gig. He then proceeded to sing a song called 'Hole in the ground', that had been done by Bernard Cribbins many years previously. The song told of a builder’s labourer who's job it was to dig a hole, for no apparent purpose, who was beset by a man from presumably the local council, who walked officiously on stage, decked out in a suit and a bowler hat and carrying a clipboard. That was none other than John, our keyboard player. The pair of them then sang a duet for the rest of the number, with John telling Ian all the reasons why he couldn’t dig the hole. Another success!You have to wonder though why bands try so earnestly to play good music when it seems that all the public really want is slapstick and monkey suits. Perhaps it's no surprise that the prognosis for many artists is to wind up floating in some celeb's swimming pool pumped full of heroin or barbiturates.It was a bit of an issue for me to decide to put songs that other people had written on my website. After all, the site is supposed to be about my songs and my life. I decided that I could not tell the story of my early life in the bands that I played in without mentioning the other people that played in them too. Infinity was a part of my life. I met a lot of people then with whom I still have an association. Some enduring friendships were formed in those years and there were some people with whom I went on to have a difficult history outside of the bands; John is one of them. A lot of water has flowed under the bridge since those days and continues to flow at an ever quickening pace. It is like the expanding universe theory; the bigger it gets the faster it gets bigger.
*The Lyrics to Venetian Glass*
When I first saw her here,
I looked away,
I didn't want to know,
If she would stay,
She came from such a different class,
She looked just like Venetian Glass.
When I looked round again,
I searched, but quite in vain,
The place had cleared,
I didn't know just where to ask,
My only thought, Venetian Glass.
When I had glanced around,
I saw a small boy,
Who said that he had found,
A broken toy,
Right then my life looked like a farce,
Some people break Venetian Glass.
(baa baas)Baa baa baa, baa baa baa,
*The History Behind This Song *
‘Same Girl’ was written about one of Phil’s girl acquaintances – I’d better not say which one until I speak to him. It was not going to be on the Infinity album, which had a science fiction theme, and was instead the most logical choice for a single release. I don’t remember the process by which Stuart was chosen to sing it, probably we all had a go at it and he sounded the best.The other point worthy of mention is the guitar I had at the time and which I played all through the Infinity era was a 1961 Gibson 'Les Paul' Custom, which was the third 'Les Paul' shape variation and the prototype model for the later SG models. I'd bought it in 1968 from a guy who lived in a big house in Weybridge, Surrey, who may well have been famous as a lot of 'pop' stars live in that part of the world. The guitar was then black and some time after I had it I realised that black wasn't the original colour, so I had it sprayed the original off-white. The guy who did the job for me was a famous sprayer who had a contract to spray guitars made by a big manufacturer and the standard of his work was usually excellent. So it came as a surprise when I got the guitar back and saw that he had made a complete pig's breakfast of the job!I took it back to Freedman's music shop in Leytonstone and they dutifully chucked it back at him and to his credit he did have another go at it, but it was never the same afterwards. In fact I used him again on subsequent occasions and his work was always fine, but he did bugger up my old Gibson. I am happily struck by how good it is sounding after thirty odd years of not hearing it. Not wishing to blow my own trumpet (or to mix my own metaphors), I think the guitar sounds great on this song. I had forgotten how good a Gibson can sound - these days it seems to be all Strats, Strats, Strats. (Fender Stratocaster guitars)Stuart Calver was one of nature’s nice people. He was polite, good humoured, cheerful, good company, unassuming – in short, a thoroughly good bloke whom everybody liked. I never knew of him loosing his cool. It is sad that he is no longer with us. He suffered a very long illness which I believe was something to do with an allergy to gluten that turned into something far worse. As there is gluten in most of the food we eat, sufferers are basically living on a knife-edge and have to scrutinise everything they eat and drink. It is not just that gluten is present in bread and flour products, which many people think, it is in the most innocuous foods that we take for granted, like ketchup for instance.Stuart would seem perfectly fine for days at a time then he would get really serious stomach ache that sometimes would double him up in pain, caused by accidentally eating a very small quantity of a flour product that had not been labeled correctly or that he had missed for some reason. There were other give-away signs like the fact that he was always ultra-slim and had a hard job maintaining his weight so that when found a food that he could eat, he would eat vast amounts of it. For instance, Infinity did a summer season in Jersey in the summer of 1969 and for part of the trip we rented a bungalow, which is a story in itself, but I won’t get into that here. In the kitchen of the bungalow there was a communal food cupboard and like a flat full of students, we had to label our individual food items or risk having them nicked by another member of the band. I saw Stuart tip a whole box of Sugar Puffs into a casserole dish and pour a whole pint of milk on them with six spoonfuls of sugar and eat the lot without another word! I also saw him turn grey almost in agony when he ate something he shouldn’t have. Needless to say, his digestion was really strange. One of the sounds that we grew to dread in the van going or coming back from a gig was '...Sorry fellahs, horse and cart'I first met him in the summer of 1964, when I was out of a band temporarily and Phil mentioned to me that he had a friend at work, Stuart, who also played guitar and sung and who also was not in a band at that time. I gave him a ring and arranged to go round to his house in Auriel Avenue in Dagenham East. Getting to Dagenham from where I lived with my Mum and Dad in Chigwell is a very easy journey by car and very difficult and arduous by train. As I was only 15 at the time, it had to be the train, which entails taking the Central Line via Mile End, which is practically into the City and back out again on the District Line to Dagenham East station.Thankfully Stuart’s road was fairly close to the station because you really don’t want to hump a guitar case and an amplifier for miles! It turned out that his family came from Scotland and when I got to know Stuart a bit, his gran became the model for the band when anybody needed to do an impersonation of a Scottish granny…‘Ehh…would ye be wunting a nice cup of tea? …and mebby one of these wee cakkies, uv jest beeked tham…?’ (sorry about that).We played through a few numbers and played each others guitars, which I thought Stuart found particularly painful because he was very, very fastidious where his gear was concerned. He played a second-hand cherry red 1963 or ’64 Gibson 335 in a Gibson fitted case and they both looked like they were brand spanking new. There was a brand new yellow fluffy duster under the strings and he used to clean his guitar and strings thoroughly every time he played anything.I looked on in wonder. It was the first time I had ever seen anybody look after a guitar like they tell you to do in the instructions. My old Gretsch Tennessean looked a bit sad by comparison, but it did have a nice neck – bloody awful pick-ups which had next to no output, but the neck was nice.I remember in 1967 – I still stuck with the Gretsch even then – I bought a Vox AC 30, which I’ve never heard anybody say wasn’t a loud amplifier, but when I used it with the Gretsch in my band at that time, I kept turning up and up until I found myself looking at a big row of 10’s and then someone said ‘You’ll have to turn up a bit Brian, I can’t hear you’ At that time I lost patience with it and bought a Telecaster. It was my own fault really; I didn’t check if the Vox was a ‘top boost’ model, which was about twice the volume of the standard issue. (that’s how Brian May got such an incredible sound).We had a few such meetings at Stuart’s house and the next time we almost brought in a bass player. It was a guy called Brian Young, who had very nice hair (I learned to watch for people with nice hair at a very early age because my own head of hair was already plotting its escape!). He looked like one of the Beatles, which couldn’t have been a bad thing and in keeping with his overall image, he played a Hofner Beatle bass. I’ve no idea where he ended up as after those few meetings because I lost track of him. He probably joined one of the dozens of Dagenham bands that there were in existence at the time. The next thing that happened was I joined a band called The Crossfires, and blew Stuart out! They were some of Stuart’s mates and lived in the same area and, most importantly to me, had not only a bass player – the legendary Bernard Jinks of T2 fame, but a good singer called Malcolm Lefbridge and a van and – it just kept getting better and better! – a few gigs!After this period we lost touch for a while, then in November 1966, I left the Cymbaline, in which band I was the bass player at the time. Phil and Gerry from the old Buccaneers were also in the band. Stuart was brought in after my departure as a replacement.
*The Lyrics to Same Girl*
I sat upon a hill, wondering why,
She looked that way still to my eyes,
And you know she’s not the same girl inside, inside,
You know she’s a strange girl with things to hide,
And though she smiles so sweetly, just like before,
And you know she’s not the same girl anymore,
I slowly turned away, trying to hide,
The tears that started falling from my eyes,
Because I found she’s not the same girl inside, inside,
I don’t know who’s to blame girl, so let it ride,
And though she looks appealing, just like before,
You know she’s not the same girl anymore.
Repeat chorus 2
Because I found she’s not the same girl inside, inside,
I don’t know who’s to blame girl, so let it ride,
And though she looks appealing, just like before,
You know she’s not the same girl anymore.
* The History Behind This Song *
In February or March of 1970; it's a long time back now and my memory is not what it was, Infinity went to Denmark. Ian, John and myself had been there previously with another band, The Flies in 1968 and the crac was legendary! We had a gig playing in The Revolution club in Copenhagen, which was a very nice place, perhaps a little bit posy as I remember it. We had been working on the album that we intended recording at home and had rehearsed several of the numbers in the old scout hut that we used to rehearse in and although the band had been a five-piece outfit for some time, we had done the proposed tracks Space Shanty and Timekeeper as a four-piece.I can’t remember the exact circumstances, but for some reason Stuart was not included in the arrangement of them playing or singing. We decided to play them live for the first time at the Revolution one night and Stuart left the stage and went down to the bar to listen. That particular night we had all – all except Phil that is - basically got off our faces on a variety of substances which we’d either drunk, smoked, or chucked down our throats or all of the above and because we’d all taken different things at different times, the mood of each member of the band varied greatly!John, with whom I shared a room that month, had recently made a contribution to ‘the joint account’ as he called it – always the financial mind at work in one way or the other – and then made successive withdrawals. Ian was absolutely pissed as he was standing at the bar, stiching up an enthusiastic American fan for an endless number of lagers, so after about an hour he was as pissed as about four different coloured and extremely inebriated poodles. I too had made a withdrawal from John’s ‘joint account’, but had also dropped several Hallies, pep pills named after the famous British actress Halley Mills – they were Preludin pills actually and in Denmark you could buy them over the counter at chemist’s shops. They used to give them to air crews during the War to keep them awake and I can tell you they did work! A couple of Prellies and you’d have the strength of ten men!Meanwhile, poor old Phil was huffing and puffing about some completely imagined state of affairs that must have displeased him greatly and we could hear him muttering from behind his drum kit...‘Come on, let’s get down to some bloody work! Call this a professional band? Well, do you? Am I the ONLY one of you that’s professional enough to stay stone-cold sober? Well, am I? Come on, I’m waiting...’He was not happy at all. I think in the end, to relieve his suffering and save any further damage to the band's ear drums, we gave him a handfull of Hallies and he washed them down with a half bottle of somebody's scotch and from that point onwards, he started talking perfect sense that we could all understand.So we did the numbers and they sounded great. That was the top of the curve for me. I think that that was the best Infinity ever sounded. It seemed to me that we were in the zone. You get to a state sometimes when you’re playing when you know precisely what’s happening and you can hear everything perfectly in balance. You seem to have all the time in the world and you feel capable of playing anything that comes into your mind. Or I was just stoned? – it must have been one of the two!I was told afterwards that John had actually fallen asleep during his Hammond solo and the bit I thought was a devastatingly brilliant piece of power-chord playing was in fact John falling asleep and falling all over the keyboard with both arms!When we’d finished playing the numbers, Stuart came back up to the stage and said‘Fellahs, that was bloody brilliant – you don’t need me, do you?’
* The Lyrics To This Song *
The lyrics to this song are not available at present due reasons of copyright and me not wanting to spend the next 20 years behind bars!
Right; all sorted! Here you are...
When you're out upon the rim,
Where the Galaxy grows thin,
And the stars that can be seen,
Are so few and far between...
In the corner of your screen,
A tiny planet can be seen,
What men could live on such as this?
Drfting blind through the abyss...
I jumped a ship on Juno,
A blue white blazing star,
They dropped me on this planet,
I landed in the bar.
My father came from Venus,My Mother came from Earth,
I drown in drink the travel stink,
From half the Universe,
Whenever we are drinking,
And that's the whole night long,
We raise our beer and you can hear,
This drunken spaceman's song.
I've seen the Rings of Saturn,
And I've orbited the Sun,
I left the Solar system,
When my life had just begun,
The Human race can live in Space,
We know which course to steer,
A spaceman's consolation is,
A belly full of beer.
(repeat last section 3 times)
Brian Gill, guitar;
Μanager was a Jerseyman called Renzo Martin
(I'm In Love With) A Girl Like You
I've Got You Under My Skin (instr)
Venetain Glass (instr)
(I'm In Love With) A Girl Like You (Mono)
I've Got You Under My Skin