Friday, June 19, 2015

Coming up: Out of This World - Ron Goodwin, Russ Garcia and the Spotniks

Out July 28.

At the dawn of the space age, with man standing on the threshold on conquering realms hitherto only realised in his wildest dreams, it is only natural that the prospect of interplanetary travel should begin to influence various aspects of our everyday lives. No longer are such events the figment of a riotous imagination, confined within the paper covers of a science-fiction novel. The conquest of space has already begun - and the effect of it's impact is being reflected in many different ways, and expressed in a variety of media.
'Man's magnificent triumph is particularly suited to musical adaptation. For, in the very concept of a voyage into the unknown, the composer is presented with a vast tableau, as infinite as space itself, embodying every possible mood, colour and sensation.'

The launch of Sputnik 1 by the U.S.S.R in 1957, and Explorer 1 a year later by America captured the public imagination and space exploration became one of the dominant themes in popular entertainment.

Here then, powered up by the Spotnicks, is a celebration of Space Exotica involving three very different but equally singular musical views of the heavens

The Spotnicks were in the vanguard of 'Space Age Pop'; in both conception and sound. They donned their space suits to celebrate interplanetary mystique with an exciting style that deployed sound effects and heavily reverbed electric guitars. For Japanese teenagers, it was the Spotnicks who most successfully captured the mood of the era and the group enjoyed two successive number 1 single hits in Ajomies and Karelia.

Ron Goodwin is probably best known for his mid-sixties scores for Those Magnificent Men In Their Flying Machines, 633 Squadron, The Battle of Britain, Where Eagles Dare, along with his skilfully nuanced lighter work like the wonderful Margaret Rutherford Miss Marple films. His George Martin produced Out Of This World (titled 'Music In Orbit' in America) was his inspired response to the growing interest in Exotica and Space Age Pop and, in particular - it has been speculated - to Russ Garcia's Fantastica, the album with which Out Of This World is twinned as the definitive works of the genre.

Goodwin's musical look at the Universe includes a comic strip conception of Martians, scoring a marimba and male voice choir to depict the rings around Saturn and articulating Mercury's mythology with a phrase based on the Morse S.O.S. signal; an action which the composer described as "jazz in the classical form'

Russ Garcia's Fantastica remains the gold standard by which all outer space exotica records are judged. The album is a marvel of sound and structure, so far ahead of its time that it would still be considered innovative even by today's standards. Garcia evokes the music of the cosmos via revolutionary studio techniques, cinematic arrangements, innovative electronic elements and the adept use of the "ethereal voce effects" on the track, The Volcanoes of Mercury, provided by the world-famous soprano, Marni Nixon.

THE SPOTNICKS

  1. ROCKET MAN
  2. MOONSHOT
  3. TELSTAR

    RON GOODWIN: OUT OF THIS WORLD!
  4. DEPARTURE
  5. THE MOON
  6. SALLY THE SATELLITE
  7. THE VENUS WALTZ
  8. MERCURY GETS THE MESSAGE
  9. THE SUN
  10. JUMPING JUPITER
  11. MARTIANS ON PARADE
  12. THE MILKY WAY
  13. THE RINGS AROUND SATURN
  14. PLAYTIME ON PLUTO
  15. RETURN MY LOVE

    RUSS GARCIA:
    FANTASTICA - MUSIC FROM OUTER SPACE
  16. INTO SPACE
  17. NOVA (EXPLODING STAR)
  18. LOST SOULS OF SATURN
  19. MONSTERS OF JUPITER
  20. WATER CREATURES OF ASTRA
  21. VENUS
  22. RED SAND OF MARS
  23. GOOFY PEEPL OF PHOBOS
  24. VOLCANOES OF MERCURY
  25. BIRTH OF A PLANET
  26. FROZEN NEPTUNE
  27. MOON RISE

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