19 Farvardin - Year 1386
Pixie and I had to head into town yesterday to pick up a few bits and get something for her mum's B-Day, which is rapidly approaching. Yesterday being the first Saturday of the month, the record fair was on at the town hall. We finished shopping for my mother-in-law and then I had exactly an hour to scout out the fair and procure whatever goodies I could in the process.
I paid the entrance fee, collected my little green ticket and headed in. The first table I stopped at was run by a German guy who appears every so often. He has a lot of good stuff...but it seems to be very over-priced to me. He carries a lot of Japanese imports and bootlegs. The coolest things I noted were the Japanese mini-LP CD editions for Popol Vuh, The Enid, E.L.O. and Man. I used to collect quite a few mini-LPs, but money and storage became a factor, so I stopped. I may be tempted to get a few of these new editions, as I also found out, via a website, that there are Incredible String Band mini-LP editions now, too. I looked over some of the bootlegs and there were a few nice ones--but again, over-priced (between £15-20 apiece), so I moved on to see what else was about--as I only had an hour.
There was a table tucked into the corner with used CDs crammed into ratty cardboard boxes, so I checked out one of the boxes and found the Essential/Castle Records re-issue of Hawkwind's 1992 album, Electric Tepee..for £3.99! Score. I also found Pulp's 1986 album, Freaks (the 1993 Fire Records re-issue) on disc for the same price. I promised Pixie I would pick up something for her while there, so I took 'em both. The seller had another box which had a Cosmic Jokers disc, Gilles Zeitschiff, and another item I was interested in, but can't recall it now. I figured they would be £3.99 as well--but I asked the seller and he said the ones in that box were between £10 and £12, so I passed. I'm sorta glad now, as reading some of the reviews for "Gilles..", it doesn't sound like an essential album to have. I had another quick look around his table and then moved on.
There were a couple of tables of vinyl, which seemed to contain a lot of cool psychedelic and prog treasures, but again--a lot of them just seemed far too expensive and I couldn't justify spending £15 on a single LP, especially if it was just to have in the collection. I did find Pekka Pohjola's The Mathematician's Air Display on LP for £7--so I took it. Pekka was the bass player in Finland's most well-known prog-rock band, Wigwam, but he went solo in the mid-70s. "The Mathematician's.." is his second solo record and as Virgin were handling production and distribution duties, they decided to hook Pekka up with Mike Oldfield to perhaps get a few UK and American punters to pay attention. Sally Oldfield also turns up on vocal duties. At another table, I found Tangerine Dream's Phaedra on LP for £10 - I hesitated - but then it is in really good condition and I've wanted to own this LP for quite some time, so I went for it. At the table next to the guy I bought the T.D. record from, there were hundreds of psych and prog discs. I started flipping through them and found many, many gems. I was starting to run low on kish-kash at this point. My time also ran out when Pixie showed up--so I had to make a choice. I chose Brainticket's Celestial Ocean, their 1973 record and one of the last ones I need to complete the catalogue and (found in the 'American Beat/Psychedelic' section), Tripsichord's one and only album, released in 1970. It's a bit country-psych, kinda Quicksliver Messenger Service mixed with the Jefferson Airplane's more country moments. I was expecting something really trippy, going by the cover art--maybe Aoxomoxoa meets After Bathing At Baxter's while in the same room as Forever Changes. Still, it's a cool addition to the collection and nice to hear one of the many over-looked 60s/early 70s San Francisco bands. Apparently, the lead singer and guitarist had a connection with the Mormon Church (!)--as some of the lyrics do seem to have a 'death and resurrection' theme going on.
At this point, Pixie was ready to go and I was almost out of money and getting hungry for some lunch. I had £15 left that I could spend--so I went back to the German geezer's table and grabbed the Man mini-LP for their 1970 self-titled album, which is my favourite. I've been looking to try and replace my Point Records copy with something that has a better re-master, particularly volume level. The Point version, at least the copy I own, seems very quiet and only really gets going during The Alchemist, the final track. The price for the mini-LP was listed at 25--but that price was in Euro, so it was actually £20. I tried to haggle him down to £15, but no go...he wouldn't budge. I'll have to wait a little while and try and score it off eBay or Amazon--same with the I.S.B. ones and maybe the Popol Vuh. Not a bad haul, though and this fair was better than the last few I've been to. I've got some listening to do now...