A List of Things We Lost is the rare vinyl blog of the sometimes corporeal, always ephemeral Unbreakable Records.

Nothing posted here will be found on a compact disc. Links are lingering somewhere at the end of each post; go find 'em!

No commercial endeavor is implied or supported by the posting of this music, it is for personal enjoyment and consumption only.

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Tuesday, August 31, 2010


Love it, love it, love it. Another band I can find barely anything on. Stars' self-titled debut [Barclay 90030, 1976] was a triumph of oddness, no, madness, in its pan-genre approach. Led by Simon Lait, Stars was an incomparable session band, Brits who recorded this one-off for the French label Barclay, which was in turn pressed in Canada. Love it.

A few connections can be made to early psych-prog progenitors like Atomic Rooster - who's drummer, Ric Parnell came over for the project - and, through Stuart Uren, Stray, who's Saturday Morning Pictures is a hazy classic, & who's first LP goes for silly dough online

A true child of the 70s, Stars used hard-hitting, flawless playing to evoke a playful, disco-fusion vibe with serious rock pedigree. "That Was Yesterday" is a deceptively mellow intro that bursts into the kind of wah-ing synths that make Herbie Hancock's Thrust the beast it is. There are also strong odors of Zappa, particularly the George Duke/Napoleon Murphy Brock era that immediately preceded Stars' release: "Heart Of Stone" features all gruff-voiced and slinky and shit, his stuttered vocal verse and the bizarro-harmony Stax horns melting perfectly into virtuosic fuzz-wah guitar funk.

The album rocks on in several variations on these themes, a bocce match between Zappa, Herbie, Yes, Steely Dan, & Stevie Wonder. "Platform Soul" is the perfect play of them all, treading the line between Mahavishnu wonkery & slinky modern soul. Just as inspired is the closing gamut, an incongruous cover of "Not Fade Away", that's nonetheless a break-laden jaunt into good times that refuse to give up.

Stars recorded this sole album before moving on to other, greater things. Parnell eventually created the role of Mick Shrimpton in Spinal Tap, while Lait became a successful producer, working with the inimatble Betty Davis on her Crashin' From Passion LP.

But thanks for Lait & co to take a moment and bring the Stars they saw so briefly down to us.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


Yes, it's been a while. Who knew that having a long-distance relationship turn short distance would take up so much time? In the intervening months since the sadly-neglected Kepzelt Riport posted below, I've found scads of scalding (new) old vinyl in the stacks. After taking the time to rip them, I found a couple that are actually available for sale directly from the artist, so, in accordance with the List's ethos, am not posting them. Follow the link to buy 'em!

Potter St.-Cloud, Potter St.-Cloud [Mediarts 41-7, 1971]. Great anti-war country psych concept album. David Potter also has single MP3s for download on his site, as well as the rare first record under Endle St. Cloud's name, the even earlier Beantown sound of the East Side Kids, & Potter's work with Lee Michaels. Check it out. . . [Coincidentally-received fact: there are 1,000 people in the U.S. named "David Potter" - ed.]

Dwayne Friend Picks Happy Goodman Hits [Canaan 463, 1967]. Smokin' instrumental album from "Mr. Gospel Guitar", who was admired by Chet Atkins & Eddy Arnold. At age 70, Friend still plays around, & has a huge catalog of his own material available through his site. Sweet, trebly picking laid smoothly within that impeccable White gospel production. Get thee hence. . .

Stardrive, Featuring Robert Mason [Columbia, 1974]. Bumpin' & rockin' synth-funk excursions by Mason & co., who needed to build his own synths to get the sounds he was hearing in his head. Far out! Wounded Bird did a CD reissue of this one but it's out of print. I'd have put it up myself but cursory research reveals that you can get it at Akashaman's stellar blog. . .

Speaking of the '70s, I'll be back shortly with some outrageous finds from the latter half of the decade, as well as a bunch of rare '80s synth & powerpop for the fall . . . Stay tuned! - AMS

Saturday, March 20, 2010


This is one of my recent favorites, a smokin' blend of Hungarian folk, American psych, Krautrock and more. In keeping with my not wanting to repeat information that's easily located on the 'net, you are directed here to learn more about this seminal eastern European jam band.

Excellent heavy riffing, lovely femme-fronted acid-pop-folk, a crazy-ass cover like some kind of Dada Cheap Thrills... yum.

While online info credits the album to Locomotiv GT (which is the backing band for the whole record), it's properly a joint collaboration between singer Anna Adamis, Locomotiv GT guitarist Gabor Presser, and the much older, influential anti-communist satirical writer Tibor Gery. The title, Kepzelt Riport Egy Amerikai Pop-Festivalrol [Qualiton SLPX 16579, 1973], translates to "Fictitious Report on an American Pop Festival", the likes of which had already been winding down by '73 (hey, don't blame them, even under Kadar's "New Economic Mechanism", underground hippies and writers in near-exile couldn't keep that current).

As far as I can tell, the additional text on the cover, "Osszes Dalai", means "Dalai Lama"... so although it doesn't seem to have to do with the title itself, flower power wafts throughout the album. Despite being an entirely studio-based effort within a standard rock format, the album definitely conveys a freewheelin', free lovin' feeling through production & the songs, which, oddly, are all in English on the album label, with titles like "The Trees Are Mourning, Too" and "Dream Yourself Away". The band - which would explore some of the blues-rock idioms in more depth throughout the decade

Not such a frequent find on vinyl (though a few on eBay are listed at reasonable prices), and since I ripped it for myself I've been listening to it almost every week. New things are revealed with each spin - guess they were luck enough to avoid the brown acid.

For some reason I can't embed this link, but copy & paste from below... don't let it stop you from getting naked and getting on down!


Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Well, I'm finally back. Been a while. Lots of heavy things going down in this ol' life, including a new job, new girlfriend, &c and so forth. Still been selling wax from the stacks of the record store I bought way back when, and have been amassing a hefty collection of things to post up here. I'm at work on a memoir on this crazy experience, which may be serialized here as it's written... stay tuned on that one. For now, thanks to everyone for your support while I've been absent. Hopefully this will be the first in a series of weekly(ish) posts of great, rare vinyl.

What better way to start it back up than with a perfectly thematic title?

Jerry Williams'
Gone [Warner Bros. BSK3291, 1979] was crying to me when I picked through the boxes and found it, mostly because of the crazy-ass psychedelic horror cover - a pulsing, technicolor hand with the middle finger missing and replaced by a tick (or aphid? or ladybug?). The back cover ain't too bad, either, lots of freaky hand lettering and weird symbology. Since I'd never heard of the guy, I had no idea what to expect musically. Since it was sealed, I first had to look it up to see if it was worth mad money (can't unseal those big-ticket LPs...).

I found a couple of online reviews of it, but no downloads. Luckily, it only goes for about $5-7 on eBay so I tore into it. Though some of what I read was kind of tepid, I think this is one's a keeper. Jerry was a Texan, a sessionman of great repute, a member of the Leon Russell entourage, friend to Steve Cropper & Duck Dunn (who appear on the Otis Redding cover)... lots of stuff to recommend a spin. I'll let Bill Bentley's excellent bio piece in The Austin Chronicle
give you all the info you need. Musically, I don't think that it's hyberbole to call Gone a fusion of Stevie Wonder, Van Morrison, Steve Winwood, Steely Dan... excellent late-70s funky fusion moves, new soul grooves and crunchy guitar workouts. Williams' voice does really recall Stevie's, with a completely authentic blue-eyed soul wail that's equally at home on the grittier rock tracks.

The songwriting is strong throughout - "Giving It Up For Your Love" was even a hit for Delbert McClinton in the early 80s. The catchy pop-soul tunes like "Philosophizer" and "Easy On Yourself" top the list of mostly originals, while the take on "I've Got Dreams To Remember" is maybe the best Otis Redding cover I've heard (not that there are that many, thankfully), where Williams sounds spot-on like Van Morrison. "This Song", the ominous album closer, features Jerry's voice in multiple overdubs on top of a dark synth bed, a la something off of Songs In The Key Of Life.

Though he played with tons of other talented - and huge - names (Little Richard, High Country, Dave Mason, Leon Russell, David Briggs), Williams apparently preferred to hang in the shadows. His only other solo foray is a wildly out-of-print self-released CD called "The Peacemaker", which features Eric Clapton, Mick Fleetwood, Nicky Hopkins, Stevie Ray Vaughan and John Oates. What?!?! This gem, though, was apparently deleted soon after release and has never seen print on CD. Unfortunately, my copy has a slight skip on the first song of Side B, but otherwise is in beautiful shape... so before it's gone again, get Gone while ya can....