Friday, April 23, 2010

The Blackbirds - No Destination (1968) Germany

The story of Blackbirds is the story of two different groups, both led by Werner Breinig. His first incarnation of Blackbirds was a beat group formed in Saarland 1965. Their album No Destination (1968) was only released in the UK on the Saga label. It consisted of psychedelic beat music comparable to the first Petards album. It is worth noting that German 'underground' albums were real rarities way back in 1968, the new underground scene had just began flowering with fresh bands like Amon Duul, Guru Guru and Tangerine Dream. The songs (ten in all) were short, but included some interesting organ work. Presumably the Blackbirds didn't quite match the musical revolution of the late sixties (as the above mentioned groups did!) and disbanded.

When Blackbirds resurfaced in 1971 with Touch Of Music (1971). They had adopted a nice, poetic and classical influenced progressive style. There was also room for some more powerful passages in-between, characteristic for the early seventies progressive music we all have learned to love. The album included six tracks in all and was released on the hideous Opp label where a Hairy Chapter album also found an outlet.
Both the Blackbirds albums are now very rare, it's hard to pinpoint the current asking price as it very much depends on what YOU are willing to pay. A very rough estimate would be 125 DEM for No Destination and 175 DEM for Touch Of Music.(COSMIC DREAMS AT PLAY)

Line-up / Musicians:

Werner Breinig - guitar, vocals
Heinz Koop - bass
Hubert Koop - organ
Helmut Vigneron - drums

Although the Blackbirds' debut LP sounded a year or two behind the times when it came out, it was a strange and intriguing disc, worth checking out by those who like the downcast and somber sound of '60s beat music from the low countries. At times this is eccentric R&B-influenced rock, but it's set aside from the norm by the odd church-psychedelic organ and strange bits of falsetto vocals that sound as sardonic as they do sincere. It might be due to an imperfect command of the English language, but the lyrics can get pretty weird and gloomy, too, as in the title track, which declares "I stay in my bed, 'cause a job is no destination" -- a pre-slacker statement of purpose, perhaps. Although this can approach elegiac ballad territory with a song like "Golden Son," it gets pretty out there with "She," in which the singer gutturally announces that "I have no problems, I have no work...all the people hate me, it doesn't touch me" before a frilly falsetto praises the virtues of "She," his reason for living. And if not for "She," he sounds like he'd be headed straight for the psychiatric ward. ~ Richie Unterberger, All Music Guide

01. Golden Sun

02. Space

03. No Destination

04. Long Tall Dorothe

05. Sandmann's Bound

06. That's My Love

07. Girl I'm Wondering

08. Show Me That You Love Me

09. Something Different

10. She

Bonus Tracks:

11. Lead On Light

12. Sherry Baby

13. Burning Out For Rock'n Roll

14. Sherry Baby
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