Conquistador

Through the magic of social media I spent twelve minutes last night listening to this unexpectedly. It popped up in my timeline and now I’m passing it on again.

Conquistador (Sabres of Paradise Mix 3)

This is a big file and the file host will probably say there was a problem playing it as a result but it should be fine to download.

The bit at seven minutes with the wire stretching noises followed by the increased tempo sounded particularly good. As was often the way in 1993 Weatherall, Burns and Kooner turned in three remixes of Conquistador for the 12″. I’ve posted Mix 1 before back in 2012 so here’s the other one.

Conquistador (Sabres of Paradise Mix 2)

Shorter, chunky progressive house and with squiggly bits but liable to get you going if you like this kind of thing.

Espiritu were Vanessa Quinones and Taplin from Frazier Chorus, signed to Heavenly (a label that continues to put out top quality music to this day). Espiritu combined house with Latin beats and put out two albums and multiple singles. It became a one woman show after a while and more recently Vanessa has formed a band called Vanessa And The Os with James Iha (x-Smashing Pumpkins) and more recently still has been making French pop as Allez Pop.

At roughly the same time this popped up in my timeline too.

This is a picture of Jagz Kooner’s Roland TR 808 which he is/was selling. In the accompanying blurb Jagz wrote that this is the actual machine that many Sabres Of Paradise songs and recordings were done using as well as some of Primal Scream’s recordings (Swastika Eyes, some of XTRMNTR, some of Evil Heat). That’s an actual piece of musical history. I considered having a whip round and getting part shares in it but couldn’t raise the funds in time (offers above £3750).

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Swordplay

I’m just going to return to Sabres Of Paradise if that’s alright. The live set I posted on Monday was pretty well received and has been flying around other sites too. I pulled out some Sabres cds to play in the car this week and that included two cd singles, Theme and Wilmot, both released in 1994. I didn’t buy cds then, being an uptight vinyl purist. Cds were clearly an attempt by The Man to destroy vinyl, resell everyone their record collections, make vast profits at our expense and stomp all over our culture, our entire way of life. Something like that. Some years later I softened my approach after cds began to infiltrate my household via the front covers of music magazines- a gateway drug to a shiny, silver state of mind. I succumbed. Years after that ebay began to offer opportunities to fill in gaps caused by my vinyl purism and at rock bottom prices. Hence, at some point I bought the cd singles of Theme and Wilmot for a couple of quid. If you don’t know Theme orWilmot (and I’m sure most of you do) then please go  and listen to them.Theme is a massive, crunchy, swirling thing with hip hop drums, a horn fanfare and spiralling guitars and can make you feel like you’re in a film. Wilmot is a delicious, delirious skank. Coming hard on the heels of 1993’s Smokebelch they make up a brilliant threesome demonstrating the outer limits of Weatherall, Koons, and Burns’ imaginations. The vinyl releases had B-sides- Theme came with dubby Return Of Carter and Edge 6, both later compiled on Sabresonic II and both much loved round here. Wilmot was backed by Rumble Summons, eight minutes of a man kicking a bin. But, to get to the point, the cd singles had extra B-sides, filling in a little more of the Sabres Of Paradise story. Theme’s fourth track was Theme III, a deconstruction or version that sounded a little like a Metal Box track played really slowly. Wilmot had a Scruff remix and also Siege Refrain, an instrument or something totally distorted playing a little riff with some drums so laden with echo they sound like they’re coming from the bottom of a swimming pool.

Theme III

Siege Refrain

An Exciting Tale Of Defiance, Fury And Romance

Someone asked me if I had digital copies of these three songs. I do. So here they are. Sabres of Paradise in session for John Peel, March 13th 1993, recorded at the Sabres basecamp and not released anywhere officially. These rips came from the much missed Ripped In Glasgow website. The audio quality is much better than rips from radio to cassette to mp3 sound like you’d think they should be. The three tunes are all excellent and the recording session dates from after the Haunted Dancehall album so are pretty much the last thing the band did before Weatherall moved on to Two Lone Swordsmen.

Stanshall’s Lament

Blackfriar’s Sunday

Duke On Berwick

Wilmoth

Some of you will love this 1994 Sabres Of Paradise single, all slink and skank and lust for life. The vocals were by Wonder, who was one half of yesterday’s postees Secret Knowledge. At Cream nightclub, Liverpool, one night in 1994 a scheduled dj appearance in the backroom by Mr Weatherall failed to materialise- transport problems I think. The resident dj and co-owner Darren Hughes stepped up to the decks and played an advance copy of Wilmot. A whole room of people went from dancing to house/techno to doing the reggae dance. The video has Sabres men Weatherall, Jagz Kooner and Gary Burns, and a troupe of majorettes dancing through London at dawn. Magic.

I found out recently that this 1931 calypso song, Black But Sweet, by Wilmoth Houdini provided a good part of the inspiration. Listen to the horn line…

Wilmoth Houdini also went under the names Frederick Wilmoth Hendricks, Edgar Leon Sinclair and King Houdini. He emigrated from Trinidad to New York, was a major player on the calypso scene in the 30s and 40s and lived there until his death in 1977.

Johnny Favourite

Drew’s post on Friday of David Holmes’ My Mate Paul put me in mind of his epic debut single (Holmes’ not Drew’s), Johnny Favourite, a fifteen minute progressive house stomp (done with Sabresmen Jagz Kooner and Gary Burns).

Johnny Favourite is named after a missing singer in the 1987 film Angel Heart. In the film Mickey Rourke plays Harry Angel, a private detective hired by Louis Cypher (geddit), to find the singer. In the Deep South he runs into all kinds of trouble- Robert de Niro peeling hard-boiled eggs, southern horror, the beautiful Lisa Bonet and some very messy voodoo…

I haven’t seen Angel Heart for years. I remember it as having atmosphere and tension. I’d like to see if it still stands up. Holmes’ track does.

Four Boy One Girl Action (And Man Ray)

That’s a heading which may bring some disappointed traffic this way. Four Boy One Girl Action were an early 90s acid-house supergroup (of sorts) who put out a 12″ single in 1993. The Hawaiian Death Stomp was released on David Holmes’ Exploding Plastic Inevitable, the four boys being Holmes, Kris Needs, and Gary Burns and Jagz Kooner moonlighting from Sabres Of Paradise. It’s long, it’s ‘progressive’, it’ll bugger your speakers if you play it very loud. This is the B-side.

The Hawaiian Death Dub

Today’s Man Ray is Salvador Dali. You didn’t need me to tell you that.