Monday, April 13, 2009


I grew up thinking this was the first 'Earth, Wind and Fire' album, the one before 'Wind' joined. By the same logic i assumed there was a 'Wind' solo album out there somewhere, I had spent hours imagining what the sleeve could look like and what it might be called but sadly it does not exist.

When I eventually learned this had absolutely nothing to do with Chicago soulsters and champions of the classic chemical compound table I assumed that given the title and use of font it was some wayward forerunner to the whole NER neo-folk /'were not nazis honest' scene. Again assumption, wonderful as it is failed me as this has nothing to do with DEATH IN JUNE what so ever.

Earth and Fire are from Holland. This isn't a great start, unintentional comedy act GOLDEN EARRING and there 33 album back catalogue are from Holland, U2 sound-a-likes and all-round musical spastics BLOF are from Holland. Brainpower is from Holland, BEEF are from Holland... I could go on but I won't.

Needless to say the Dutch contribution to the broader spectrum of what can be considered as 'Popular music' has been fucking embarrassing. The God of music, if he exists is way beyond the point of appeasement with a mere virgin sacrifice. He would be quite within his rights to call upon Poseidon and demand he swallow up the entire sorry little country, a watery grave for every man, woman and child. I imagine the only thing stopping him is the twice annual record fair in Utrecht.

This then came as a pleasant surprise. Musically it fills a gap between the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA's self titled album and 'Cauldron' by FIFTY FOOT HOSE. The singer has a very listenable voice, one sufficiently tainted by Americanisms to ensure that she is unable to conjour any nightmare images of rat infestation, shit food, collaboration or windmills. In fact the only thing that gives this away as Dutch is the writing on the rear of the sleeve. 

'Song of the Marching Children' relies heavily on a repeat marching drum motif but unlike say one of those Grenadier Guards albums your Granddad used to have it does seem to work. Nice bit of organ and analogue synth as well. Combine that with track after track of utterly ridiculous lyrics and what sounds like a Theremin and you have really nice little album. 

Then there's the picture on the inside of the gatefold sleeve: A one eyed triangle giving birth to giant sky babies in front of an evil unicorn drowning in a sea of blue flames and skulls. This obviously gets a big 'thumbs up'.

'When will be the crack of doom?
Is it tomorrow? 
Is it tomorrow?'

...Dude I have absolutely no idea.

If you want to buy this album it comes up on Ebay from time to time and isn't super expensive. I got mine from 'Record Friend' in Amsterdam for 25 Euros, fat guy with a beard sold it to me. Unlike the majority of record shops left in Amsterdam 'Record Friend' is well worth a visit, they have listening facilities and if you have any money left the red light district is just over a minutes walk away.

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