The 40th Anniversary Henry Cow Box Set

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The 40th Anniversary Henry Cow Box Set
Box set by Henry Cow
Released January 2009 (2009-01)
Recorded 1972–1978
Genre
Length 601:45
Label Recommended (UK)
Producer Henry Cow
Henry Cow chronology
  • The 40th Anniversary Henry Cow Box Set
  • (2009)

The 40th Anniversary Henry Cow Box Set (also known as The Road) is a nine-CD plus one-DVD limited edition[1] box set by English avant-rock group Henry Cow, and was released by RēR Megacorp in January 2009. It consists of over 10 hours of previously unreleased recordings made between 1972 and 1978 from concerts, radio broadcasts, one-off projects, events and the studio. Included are new compositions, over four hours of free improvisation, and live performances of some of Henry Cow's original LP repertoire.

Chris Cutler, of Henry Cow and Recommended Records, planned and coordinated the whole project. Assembly of the recordings began in the mid-1990s and were edited by Cutler. He also prepared and edited two books that are included in the box set. Bob Drake remastered and, where possible, non-invasively remixed the original recordings at Studio Midi-Pyrenees in France between 2004 and 2008.

The box set was expected to be ready before the end of 2008 to coincide with the 40th anniversary of the formation of Henry Cow, but the discovery of additional material delayed its release. Volume 6 of the box set, Stockholm & Göteborg was released separately by RēR Megacorp in September 2008 in advance of the box set's release.

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
All About Jazz favourable[2]
AllMusic 3.5/5 stars[3][4]
Dusted favourable[5]

"[This is] one of the best collections ever released about a group that most people have never heard."

John Kelman at All About Jazz.[2]

In a review of this box set, John Kelman at All About Jazz said that it "offers, for the first time, a comprehensive account of Henry Cow's breadth and depth." He went on to say that "If ever there were a group with a wrong to be righted, it would have to be Henry Cow. With a wellspring of unreleased material, an impressive editing and mastering job that's made even audience cassette recordings sound crystal clear, [...] The 40th Anniversary Henry Cow Box Set is the set die-hard fans have been waiting for."[2] This review was listed at position 8 in All About Jazz '​s "Top 100 Recommended CD Reviews of All Time".[6]

François Couture of AllMusic described the box set as a "monument" and a "treasure trove".[3] He said that it "present[s] for the first time a complete picture of Henry Cow, from the rehearsal-intensive compositions to the ever-important improvisations, through all incarnations of the band and including both highs and lows."[4] Dusted Magazine said that the set "fills in many missing historical and compositional links" and that it is a "fitting monument to one of the most interesting and eclectic groups to come out of the 1970s."[5]

Content[edit]

The box set is split into two boxes:

  • Box 1: The Road: Volumes 1–5 consists of five CDs and a book, and covers the period 1972 to 1976. Included is the March 1976 Hamburg radio show that was John Greaves’s last concert with the band, and the Trondheim concert that followed in May where Henry Cow improvised as a quartet in the dark.
  • Box 2: The Road: Volumes 6–10 consists of four CDs, a DVD and a book, and covers the period 1976 to 1978. Included is the March 1978 Bremen radio broadcast and the May 1977 Swedish Radio broadcast. The DVD is a 75 minute video of Henry Cow (with Georgie Born and Dagmar Krause) performing in Switzerland in 1976.

Subscribers to this box set received a third, empty box entitled The Studio: Volumes 1–5 to hold the five Henry Cow studio recordings re-issued on CD. Space was left in The Road: Volumes 1–5 box for the CD re-issue of Henry Cow Concerts. These six original albums were re-issued by Recommended Records in the Henry Cow Box in 2006. Combining the Henry Cow Box and The 40th Anniversary Henry Cow Box Set gives the complete works of Henry Cow.

Box 1: The Road: Volumes 1–5[edit]

A 60-page book accompanies this box and contains the following:


Volume 1: Beginnings[edit]

Extracts from rehearsal and other tapes from before Legend (1973).

"Pre-Teenbeat I/II" are fragments later incorporated into "Teenbeat". Track 6 is an extended version of "Teenbeat" with a lengthy guitar solo from Fred Frith and an embedded free improvisation section. "Citizen King" became "Nine Funerals of the Citizen King", and "Nirvana for Moles" became "Nirvana for Mice" on Legend. "Rapt in a Blanket" and "Came to See You" are two songs composed and sung by Frith around arrangements by Henry Cow. Frith had presented the songs to the group as just chords and a tune and in need of elaboration, which forced the band to adjust their approach from only working on longish instrumentals. At the time Chris Cutler had been rehearsing part-time with Henry Cow, and he has stated that it was this new challenge which prompted him to join the group permanently.[11]

With the Yellow Half-Moon and Blue Star is a Frith composition that was commissioned by the Cambridge Contemporary Dance Group under Liebe Klug, and was named after a painting by Paul Klee ("Avec la demi-lune jaune et l'étoile bleue").[12] Only an extract of it appeared on Legend, whereas it is featured here for the first time in its entirety. Guider Tells of Silent Airborne Machine is a suite of three instrumentals, "Olwyn Grainger" and "Betty McGowan" by the group and "Lottie Hare" ("a neo-classical miniature"[2]) by John Greaves. Its inspiration came from a news item that appeared on 23 August 1971 in The Times about a group of Girl Guide leaders, Olwyn Grainger, Lottie Hare and Betty McGowan who had reported witnessing a UFO.[13]

Track list[edit]

  1. "Pre-Teenbeat I" (Frith) – 1:44
  2. "Pre-Teenbeat II" (Frith) – 1:28
  3. "Rapt in a Blanket" (Frith) – 5:06
  4. "Came to See You" (Frith) – 6:43
  5. "Amygdala extract (pre-Legend demo)" (Hodgkinson) – 3:35
  6. "Teenbeat" (Frith) – 10:19
  7. "Citizen King" (Hodgkinson) – 5:21
  8. "Nirvana for Moles" (Frith) – 4:09

    With the Yellow Half-Moon and Blue Star (Frith)

  1. "Introduction" – 0:46
  2. "Invocation" – 2:08
  3. "Demi-Lune Jaune" – 2:10
  4. "Three Little Steps" – 2:13
  5. "Red Riff" – 1:50
  6. "Chorale Flautando" – 1:51
  7. "Cycling Over the Cliff" – 4:08
  8. "First Light" – 0:51

    Guider Tells of Silent Airborne Machine

  1. "Olwyn Grainger" (Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson) – 2:24
  2. "Betty McGowan" (Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson, Leigh) – 6:12
  3. "Lottie Hare" (Greaves) – 1:24

Personnel[edit]

  • Chris Cutler – drums, piano (start of track 18)
  • Fred Frith – guitar, violin, voice (tracks 3,4)
  • John Greaves – bass guitar, piano (end of tracks 18,19), voice (tracks 7,18)
  • Tim Hodgkinson – organ, alto saxophone, melodica, clarinet, voice (track 7)
  • Geoff Leigh – tenor saxophone (tracks 1,2,5–19), flute (tracks 1,2,5–19), voice (tracks 7,9,16)
Guests[edit]

Track notes[edit]

  • Tracks 1,2,5 are from rehearsal tapes, recorded by Jack Balchin before Legend
  • Tracks 3,4,6 were recorded in London, 28 February 1972[nb 2]
  • Tracks 7,8,17–19 were recorded in London, 24 April 1973[nb 2]
  • Tracks 9–16 were recorded in London, 17 October 1972[nb 2]

Volume 2: 1974–5[edit]

A collection of live performances from 1974 and 1975.

Halsteren is an instrumental suite that incorporates an early version of Tim Hodgkinson's "Living in the Heart of the Beast" from In Praise of Learning (1975). Recorded in Halsteren in September 1974 when Henry Cow was a quartet of Cutler, Frith, Greaves and Hodgkinson, Hodgkinson's unfinished instrumental is performed here in sections interspaced with improvisations by the group.[14] Part of another performance of this suite also features in "Groningen" on Henry Cow Concerts (1976). Halsteren concert organiser Jan Smagge recounts in the box set booklets an anecdote where the band were approached by several people during an interval and asked whether they could play any songs by Mud, a contemporary mainstream pop act.[14] Halsteren is followed here by "Living in the Heart of the Beast" from a Paris concert with Robert Wyatt in May 1975. It is the first live recording of the completed vocal version of the composition, and is sung by Dagmar Krause, her first public appearance with the band,[2] with Wyatt accompanying her in the closing verses.

Track list[edit]

  1. "Introduction" (Cooper) – 1:52
  2. "Ruins I" (Frith) – 6:35
  3. "Half Asleep, Half Awake" (Greaves) – 4:11
  4. "Ruins II" (Frith) – 0:59
  5. "Heron Shower over Hamburg" (Frith) – 2:29
  6. "Nix" – 0:06

    Halsteren (Hodgkinson, Frith, Greaves, Cutler on themes by Hodgkinson)

  1. "Halsteren 1" – 1:08
  2. "Solo 1" (Hodgkinson) – 1:08
  3. "Solo Extension 1" – 2:21
  4. "Halsteren 2" – 1:24
  5. "Extension 1" – 0:17
  6. "Halsteren 3" – 0:52
  7. "First Suspension" – 4:28
  8. "Extension 2" – 2:58
  9. "Extension 3" – 1:19
  10. "Solo 2" (Frith) – 1:20
  11. "Solo Extension 2" – 2:32
  12. "Halsteren 4" – 0:17
  13. "Second Suspension" – 2:34
  14. "Extension 4" – 1:58
  15. "Solo 3" (Greaves) – 0:49
  16. "Solo Extension 3" – 3:17
  17. "Halsteren 5" – 1:21

    24–32. "Living in the Heart of the Beast" (Hodgkinson) – 13:46

Personnel[edit]

  • Lindsay Cooper – oboe (tracks 1–5,24–32), bassoon (tracks 1–5,24–32), piano (tracks 24–32)
  • Chris Cutler – drums, glass bowls and clatter (tracks 7–23)
  • Fred Frith – guitar (tracks 1–5,24–32), viola (tracks 1–5,24–32), piano (track 1,2), electric and acoustic guitars (tracks 7–23), prism (tracks 7–23), xylophone (tracks 24–32)
  • John Greaves – bass guitar, piano (track 3), clothes pegs (tracks 7–23)
  • Tim Hodgkinson – organ, alto saxophone, clarinet (tracks 7–23)
  • Dagmar Krause – voice (tracks 24–32)
Guests[edit]

Track notes[edit]

  • Tracks 1–5 were recorded in London, 25 April 1974[nb 2]
  • Tracks 7–23 are from a concert at the Verenigingsgebouw in Halsteren, 26 September 1974, recorded by Jan Smagge on a stereo reel-to-reel
  • Tracks 24–32 are from a concert at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées, Paris, 8 May 1975, with live mix by Sarah Greaves

Volume 3: Hamburg[edit]

Recordings from Henry Cow's March 1976 NDR Jazz Workshop in Hamburg, Germany, plus two songs with Robert Wyatt from concerts in Paris and Rome in May and June 1975, respectively.

"Fair as the Moon", followed later by "Terrible as an Army with Banners" are based on "Beautiful as the Moon – Terrible as an Army with Banners" from In Praise of Learning (1975), and became the longest lasting "building block" the band used in live performances.[14] "Nirvana for Rabbits" is a rework of the Frith composition "Nirvana for Mice" from Legend (1973), while "Ottawa Song" is part of a longer suite Frith composed for the Ottawa Company, the rest of which never survived, except for fragments that appeared in "Muddy Mouse" and "Muddy Mouth" on Wyatt's solo album, Ruth Is Stranger Than Richard (1975).[15] This performance of "Ottawa Song" also appears (by accident) on Volume 6: Stockholm & Göteborg, but without the introductory bassoon solo. "Gloria Gloom" is from Matching Mole's second album, Matching Mole's Little Red Record (1972). "Hamburg 1–5", "Red Noise 10" and "A Heart" are improvisations by the band, the last two titled at the request of NDR.[nb 3][16]

Wyatt sings on "Little Red Riding Hood Hit the Road" from his solo album, Rock Bottom (1974), and on "We Did It Again", a "surprising and wackily absurdist"[2] cover of the Soft Machine song from their debut album, The Soft Machine (1968). The version of "We Did It Again" that appears on this CD is a combination of two different recordings of the same performance, one from an audience cassette recording with "a lot of audience reaction, a lot of guitar, thin-sounding drums and bass, and only a faint echo of the vocals", and one from the mixing desk with "almost no guitar, but plenty of drums, bass, and vocals".[17]

Track list[edit]

  1. "Fair as the Moon" (Cutler, Frith) – 6:01
  2. "Nirvana for Rabbits" (Frith) – 4:48
  3. "Ottawa Song" (Cutler, Frith) – 3:41
  4. "Twilight Bridge" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson, Krause) – 2:04
  5. "Gloria Gloom" (Wyatt, McCormick) – 2:17
  6. "Hamburg 1" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson, Krause) – 4:15
  7. "Hamburg 2" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson, Krause) – 3:27
  8. "Red Noise 10" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson, Krause) – 3:16
  9. "Hamburg 3" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson, Krause) – 5:30
  10. "Hamburg 4" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson, Krause) – 2:40
  11. "Hamburg 5" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson, Krause) – 5:25
  12. "Terrible as an Army with Banners" (Cutler, Frith) – 3:34
  13. "A Heart" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson, Krause) – 9:03
  14. "Little Red Riding Hood Hit the Road" (Wyatt) – 5:12
  15. "We Did It Again" (Ayers) – 6:31

Personnel[edit]

Guests[edit]

Track notes[edit]

  • Tracks 1–13 are from a public concert recorded for the NDR Jazz Workshop, Hamburg, 26 March 1976
  • Track 14 are from a concert at the Piazza Navona, Rome, 27 June 1975, mixed by Sarah Greaves
  • Track 15 are from a concert at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées, Paris, 8 May 1975, with live mix by Sarah Greaves

Volume 4–5: Trondheim[edit]

A double CD of a complete concert recorded in Trondheim, Norway on 26 May 1976, later broadcast on the Sveriges Radio radio program, Tonkraft on 14 July 1976.

When Henry Cow prepared to embark on their May 1976 tour of Scandinavia, they were two members short: John Greaves had left the band after the March 1976 Hamburg concert, and Dagmar Krause had remained behind in Hamburg due to ill-health. As they were committed to the tour, Henry Cow, as a quartet of Cutler, Frith, Hodgkinson and Cooper, abandoned their familiar set lists and decided improvise all the concerts on the tour in the dark. They were also accompanied by "shadows that were not us",[18] which were two-hour tapes that Cooper, Hodgkinson and Frith had each prepared. The subject of the tapes were: Cooper – youth to old age; Hodgkinson – history of language; and Frith – history of Henry Cow. The tapes ran continuously and inaudibly throughout the duration of the show, but were made audible by their creators from time to time with a foot pedal, without knowing what part of the tape would be heard. Chris Cutler explained that it was an "attempt to inhabit a dramaturgy anchored in narratives of origins, evolution, history and ritual".[18] They also decided to disguise and "primitivise" themselves and their equipment, and hence the darkness.[2][18]

François Couture at AllMusic called Trondheim the "crown jewel" of the box set, saying it was "some of [Henry Cow's] darkest and most thrilling music".[3] John Kelman at All About Jazz described Trondheim as "about as unapproachable as Henry Cow ever got, and yet amongst the densities and at times harsh realms are moments of profound beauty. The 80-minute improvisation [...] demonstrates the kind of intuitive push-and-pull that could only come from musicians not just spending a great deal of time playing together, but also living together, with a potent ability to sometimes shift ambience and color at the drop of a dime."[2]

Track list[edit]

Disk 1

 1–10. "Trondheim I" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Hodgkinson) – 48:25

Disk 2

  1–6.  "Trondheim II" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Hodgkinson) – 31:54

  1. "March" (Frith arr. Henry Cow) – 6:25

Personnel[edit]

  • Lindsay Cooper – oboe, bassoon, tapes, voice, flute (CD 1), recorder (CD 1), piano (CD 1, tracks 7–9), jaw harp (CD 2)
  • Chris Cutler – drums, telephone mouthpieces, amplification, flotsam (CD 1), voice (CD 1), jetsam (CD 2), piano (CD 2)
  • Fred Frith – guitar, 6-string bass guitar, xylophone, tapes, violin (CD 1), tubular bells (CD 1),
  • Tim Hodgkinson – organ, clarinet, voice, tapes, alto saxophone (CD 2), mbira (CD 2)

Track notes[edit]

  • All tracks from a cassette recording made by Henry Cow at the mixing desk at a concert at Studentersamfundet, Trondheim, 26 May 1976, mixed by Joel Schwartz

Box 2: The Road: Volumes 6–10[edit]

A 60-page book accompanies this box and contains the following:


Volume 6: Stockholm & Göteborg[edit]

Main article: Stockholm & Göteborg

Swedish Radio recordings of concerts performed in May 1976 in Gothenburg and May 1977 in Stockholm. This CD was released separately from the box set by RēR Megacorp in September 2008.

Track list[edit]

  1. "Stockholm 1" (Born, Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Hodgkinson) – 6:38

  2–6.   "Erk Gah" (aka "Hold to the Zero Burn, Imagine") (Hodgkinson) – 16:46

  1. "A Bridge to Ruins" (Hodgkinson) – 5:08
  2. "Ottawa Song" (Cutler, Frith) – 3:27

9–11.   "Göteborg 1" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Hodgkinson) – 16:53

  1. "No More Songs" (Ochs arr. Frith) – 3:35
  2. "Stockholm 2" (Born, Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Hodgkinson, Krause) – 6:13
  3. "March" (Frith) – 4:15

Personnel[edit]

  • Georgie Born – bass guitar, cello (tracks 1–7,12–14)
  • Lindsay Cooper – bassoon, flute, recorder, piano (tracks 1–2), tapes (tracks 9-11)
  • Chris Cutler – drums, electrification, piano (track 10)
  • Fred Frith – guitar, xylophone, tapes (tracks 9-11), piano (tracks 13–14)
  • Tim Hodgkinson – organ, alto saxophone, clarinet, voice (tracks 9-11), tapes (tracks 9-11)
  • Dagmar Krause – singing (tracks 1–7,12–14)
  • John Greaves – bass guitar (track 8), voice (track 8)

Track notes[edit]

  • Tracks 1–7 and 12–14 were recorded for Tonkraft by Sveriges Radio at a concert in Stockholm on 9 May 1977 and broadcast on 8 June and 11 June 1977; the programme producer was S. Vermalin
  • Track 8 was recorded for the NDR Jazz Workshop in Hamburg on 26 March 1976
  • Tracks 9-11 were recorded for Tonkraft by Sveriges Radio at a concert in Gothenburg on 28 May 1976 and broadcast on 14 July and 17 July 1976; the programme producer was Christer Eklund

Volume 7: Later and Post-Virgin[edit]

A collection of live performances from late 1976 and 1977.

"Joan" and "On Suicide", traditionally associated with Art Bears and Hopes and Fears (1978), feature here and show that they were Henry Cow songs long before Art Bears came into being.[2] "On Suicide" is longer than the Art Bears version and ends with a cello solo by Georgie Born. The Art Bears version of "Joan" also differs from the live recording here in that it is shorter (several sections are "telescoped" into one), and the lyrics are not the same. Chris Cutler wrote the original lyrics for "Joan" and Tim Hodgkinson's "The Pirate Song", but the group were unhappy with them, and the songs were withdrawn from Henry Cow's repertoire. "Joan" was only performed a few times, and "The Pirate Song" not at all. Prior to Henry Cow's recording session at Sunrise in Switzerland in January 1978, Cutler rewrote the lyrics of the two songs, but once again there were objections from factions within the group. Dagmar Krause, however, supported the new lyrics and both songs were recorded by Henry Cow with the revised texts, only to be released later on Hopes and Fears as a result of further disagreements with the group.[20]

"Untitled Piece" was a work-in-progress by Lindsay Cooper that was only performed a few times by Henry Cow,[21] and foreshadowed some of her work that appeared later on her 1998 solo album A View From the Bridge.[2] "Chaumont 1", "Chaumont 2" and "March" are from a Paris concert featuring an improvisation by the group, a bassoon and saxophone duet by Cooper and Hodgkinson, and Fred Frith's familiar "March" to close the set. Also included are new renditions of "Teenbeat" and "Bittern Storm Over Ulm". According to All About Jazz, "Teenbeat 2" features "some of Frith's most searing guitar playing of the box", and "Teenbeat 3" has "Hodgkinson's saxophone at its most visceral."[2]

"Post-Teen Auditorium Invasion" and "Bucket Waltz" are from a concert in Amsterdam that feature guests Annemarie Roelofs and ex-Henry Cow member Geoff Leigh. Roelofs, who was attending the concert, began playing trombone from the audience and was invited to join Henry Cow on stage. She ended up touring with the band the following year and playing on Western Culture.[22] Leigh, whose band Red Balune was playing at the same concert, was invited by his former band to guest with them.[23]

Track list[edit]

  1. "Joan" (Cutler, Frith) – 5:26
  2. "Teenbeat 2" (Frith) – 8:05
  3. "Would You Prefer Us to Lie?" (Cutler, Greaves) – 4:28
  4. "Untitled Piece" (Cooper) – 11:31
  5. "Chaumont 1" (Born, Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Hodgkinson) – 9:01
  6. "Chaumont 2" (Cooper, Hodgkinson) – 2:14
  7. "March" (Frith) – 7:00
  8. "Brain Storm Over Barnsley" (Frith) – 3:23
  9. "Teenbeat 3" (Frith) – 6:45
  10. "Post-Teen Auditorium Invasion" (Cooper, Hodgkinson, Leigh, Roelofs) – 3:56
  11. "Bucket Waltz" (Born, Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Hodgkinson, Leigh, Roelofs) – 4:26
  12. "On Suicide" (Brecht, Eisler) – 3:42

Personnel[edit]

  • Tim Hodgkinson – organ, alto saxophone, clarinet (track 12), voice (track 5), tapes
  • Fred Frith – guitar, xylophone, tubular bells, violin, piano (track 7)
  • Lindsay Cooper – bassoon, oboe, jaw harp, flute, piano (tracks 3–5), accordion (track 5)
  • Georgie Born – bass guitar, cello
  • Dagmar Krause – voice (track 1,3,7,12)
  • Chris Cutler – drums, contact microphone amplification (tracks 5–7)
Guests[edit]

Track notes[edit]

  • Tracks 1–3 were recorded on cassette from the audience at Wandsworth Town Hall, London, 13 February 1977, live mix by Jack Balchin
  • Track 4 was recorded on cassette from the audience at De Plek, Vlissingen, 22 May 1977, live mix by Jack Balchin
  • Tracks 5–7 were recorded on cassette from the audience at Salle des Fetes, Chaumont, 25 November 1976, live mix by Jack Balchin
  • Tracks 8–11 were recorded on cassette from the audience at Melkweg, Amsterdam, 16 December 1977, live mix by Jack Balchin
  • Track 12 was from an unidentified cassette recording, probably May/June 1977

Volume 8: Bremen[edit]

Extracts from a live radio broadcast on Radio Bremen for New Jazz Live on 22 March 1978.

Henry Cow perform here as a quintet of Hodgkinson/Frith/Cooper/Born/Cutler; Dagmar Krause had left the band the previous November due to ill health.[23] "Armed Maniac/Things We Forgot" is a titled improvisation with references "in ambience" to contemporary classical composers Krzysztof Penderecki and György Ligeti.[nb 3][2] New Suite is a Fred Frith composition with an instrumental version of Tim Hodgkinson's "Viva Pa Ubu" added. "Viva Pa Ubu" is a song that had been recorded, with the whole group singing, during (what became) the Hopes and Fears recording sessions in January 1978, and was the start of a musical production by Hodgkinson of Alfred Jarry's play Ubu Roi (Pa Ubu being a character in the play).[24] It was later released on the Recommended Records Sampler and re-released as a bonus track on the CD reissue of Western Culture. Die Kunst Der Orgel is a 34-minute improvisation that ends with an instrumental version of Tim Hodgkinson's "Erk Gah".

Track list[edit]

  1. "Armed Maniac/Things We Forgot" (Born, Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Hodgkinson) – 11:55

    New Suite

  1. "Van Fleet" (Frith) – 1:49
  2. "Viva Pa Ubu instrumental extract" (Hodgkinson) – 4:35
  3. "The Big Tune Begins" (Frith) – 0:45
  4. "The Big Tune Continues" (Frith) – 2:11
  5. "The Big Tune Ends" (Frith) – 1:30
  6. "March" (Frith) – 3:46

    Die Kunst Der Orgel

    8–12.  "Bremen" (Born, Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Hodgkinson) – 34:25
  13–14.  "Erk Gah instrumental extract" (Hodgkinson) – 13:04

Personnel[edit]

  • Tim Hodgkinson – organ, alto saxophone, clarinet, mbira, voice (track 9)
  • Fred Frith – guitar, tubular bells, marimba (track 8), xylophone (track 14), violin, piano (track 7)
  • Lindsay Cooper – bassoon, oboe, sopranino saxophone, recorder, piano (tracks 9-11,14), accordion, egg-slicer
  • Georgie Born – bass guitar, cello
  • Chris Cutler – drums, marimba (tracks 9–10), piano (tracks 1,14)

Track notes[edit]

  • Recorded for New Jazz Live at a public concert at Sendesall, Studio F, Radio Bremen, 22 March 1978, produced by Bernd Meier, concert mix by Jack Balchin

Volume 9: Late[edit]

A collection of performances from June and July 1978, plus Henry Cow's set at the inaugural Rock in Opposition Festival in March 1978.

"Joy of Sax" is a saxophone trio of Lindsay Cooper, Tim Hodgkinson and David Chambers from The Orckestra, which was a merger of Henry Cow, the Mike Westbrook Brass Band and folk singer Frankie Armstrong that took place in 1977. "Jackie-ing", also featuring Chambers, is a Westbrook arrangement of a Thelonious Monk composition that The Orckestra had performed. "The Herring People" is a Fred Frith instrumental he wrote to "counterbalance" the increasingly complex Hodgkinson and Cooper compositions.[25] It was later recorded by Henry Cow during the July and August 1978 Western Culture sessions, but was only released for the first time, as "Waking Against Sleep", on the 1990 CD re-issue of Frith's solo album, Gravity (1980).[26] It was also recorded by Curlew under the title "Time and a Half", and appeared on their album, North America (1985), which was produced by Frith.

The improvisation "RIO" and Cooper's "Half the Sky" was Henry Cow's set at the inaugural Rock in Opposition (RIO) festival that took place on 12 March 1978 at the New London Theatre. RIO was a collective of "progressive" bands that were united in their opposition to the music industry. Henry Cow initiated the movement and the other inaugural members, who also performed at the concert, were Stormy Six (Italy), Samla Mammas Manna (Sweden), Univers Zero (Belgium) and Etron Fou Leloublan (France). Dusted Magazine described Henry Cow's "RIO" improvisation at this event as "one of their most cacophonous and cataclysmic".[5] Cooper's "Half the Sky", which had been recorded in January 1978 at Sunrise in Switzerland and was later released on Western Culture, was named for Chairman Mao's dictum "Women hold up half the sky".[26][27]

Track list[edit]

  1. "Joy of Sax" – 3:50
  2. "Jackie-ing" (Monk arr. Westbrook) – 1:15
  3. "Untitled 2" (Cooper) – 1:32
  4. "The Herring People" (Frith) – 2:07

  5–8.   "RIO" (Born, Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Hodgkinson) – 17:09

  1. "Half the Sky" (Cooper) – 5:05
  2. "Virgins of Illinois" (trad.) – 2:13
  3. "Viva Pa Ubu" (Hodgkinson) – 2:18

Personnel[edit]

Guests[edit]

Track notes[edit]

  • Tracks 1–4,10 are from an audience recording commonly believed to be from the Festa del PdUP (Partito di Unità Proletaria) in Monza, Italy, 9 July 1978, though this is disputed by Chris Cutler; live concert mix by E. M. Thomas[nb 2]
  • Tracks 5–9 are from the Rock in Opposition Festival at New London Theatre, Drury Lane, London, 12 March 1978, recorded by Hasse Bruniusson of Samla Mammas Manna, live concert mix by Jack Balchin
  • Track 11 was recorded on cassette from the audience at Cervia, 23 July 1978, live concert mix by E. M. Thomas

Volume 10: Vevey (DVD)[edit]

A 75-minute video of Henry Cow performing in Vevey, Switzerland in August 1976, recorded for the Swiss TV program, Kaleidospop.[23] This is the only known video recording of Henry Cow.[4][28]

The DVD features the group live outdoors on the grass and playing a set that was representative from the time. It includes Tim Hodgkinson's two "epic" compositions, "Living in the Heart of the Beast" and "Erk Gah", and two improvisations, "Vevey 1" and "Vevey 2".[2] AllMusic described the multi-camera work on the DVD as "pretty good" and the editing "dated", but added that "seeing the band in action, both navigating through its most complex material and engaging in collective improvisation, is quite an experience."[4]

Track list[edit]

  1. "Beautiful As ..." (Cutler, Frith) – 6:50
  2. "Vevey 1" (Born, Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Hodgkinson, Krause) – 8:49
  3. "Terrible As ..." (Cutler, Frith) – 2:19
  4. Tim speaks – 1:04
  5. "No More Songs" (Ochs arr. Frith) – 3:48
  6. "Living in the Heart of the Beast" (Hodgkinson) – 16:57
  7. "Vevey 2" (Born, Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Hodgkinson, Krause) – 13:51
  8. "March" (Frith) – 2:42
  9. "Erk Gah" (Hodgkinson) – 18:28

Personnel[edit]

Track notes[edit]

Bonus CD[edit]

A Cow Cabinet of Curiosities[edit]

A limited edition[29] CD given to subscribers of the box set. The title alludes to the name of Bob Drake's band, Cabinet of Curiosities.

"Pre Virgin Demo 1/2" include fragments that were later incorporated into tracks on Legend. "Lovers of Gold" is an alternate version of "Beginning: The Long March" from In Praise of Learning that was created by Chris Cutler.[30] "The Glove" is derived from raw material recorded during the Unrest sessions.[30]

Track list[edit]

  1. "Pre Virgin Demo 1" (mostly Frith) – 3.55
  2. "Pre Virgin Demo 2" (mostly Hodgkinson) – 1:02
  3. "Unidentified Improvisation 1" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson) – 1:30
  4. "Unidentified Improvisation 2" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson, Krause) – 5:37
  5. "Unidentified late composition" (probably Cooper) – 2:04
  6. "Exploded Amygdala/Teen Introduction" (Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson, Leigh) – 3:37
  7. "Lovers of Gold" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson, Krause) – 6:29
  8. "Hamburg 6" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson, Krause) – 5:33
  9. "Ruins extract" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson, Krause) – 8:24
  10. "Hamburg 7" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson, Krause) – 9:44
  11. "Half the Sky" (Cooper) – 5:03
  12. "Extract from The Glove" (Cooper, Cutler, Frith, Greaves, Hodgkinson) – 2:19

Personnel[edit]

Track notes[edit]

  • Tracks 1,2 were recorded in Henry Cow's rehearsal space by Jack Balchin, probably 1972
  • Tracks 3–6 were extracted from a forgotten tape from 1975–77 which surfaced while this box set was being compiled[nb 2]
  • Track 7 is an out-take from In Praise of Learning mixed by Tim Hodgkinson at Cold Storage in 1984; previously issued on the 1991 CD (remixed) edition of In Praise of Learning
  • Tracks 8–10 were recorded at a public concert for NDR Jazz Workshop, Hamburg, 26 March 1976
  • Track 11 recorded at a public concert at Sendesaal, Studio F, Radio Bremen, 22 March 1978, produced by Bernd Meier
  • Track 12 is an extract from an Unrest out-take mixed by Tim Hodgkinson at Cold Storage in 1984; previously issued in full (6:35) on the 1991 CD edition of Unrest

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ Lindsay Cooper's contribution was taken from a collection of memoirs she had dictated to a friend between 1999 and 2001 when she could no longer use her hands due to multiple sclerosis. The notes were for a book she was working on at the time, The Road is Wider Than Long: Travels with MS. Chris Cutler said that while this box set was being prepared, "communication [with her] had become almost impossible."[7] Cooper died on 18 September 2013.[8][9]
  2. ^ a b c d e f This is a correction of what appears in the CD liner notes.
  3. ^ a b While Henry Cow generally left their improvisations untitled and referred to them by the venue they were performed at, some radio broadcasters requested that they be given titles.
  4. ^ Taken from documents written by Nick Hobbs that were included with Henry Cow's application for support from the Arts Council.[19]

References[edit]

  1. ^ 1500 copies (box set liner notes).
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m Kelman, John (12 January 2009). "Henry Cow: The 40th Anniversary Henry Cow Box Set". All About Jazz. Retrieved 25 March 2009. 
  3. ^ a b c Couture, François. "Henry Cow: The Road, Vols. 1–5". AllMusic. Retrieved 23 July 2009. 
  4. ^ a b c d Couture, François. "Henry Cow: The Road, Vols. 6–10". AllMusic. Retrieved 23 July 2009. 
  5. ^ a b c Medwin, Marc (25 September 2009). "The 40th Anniversary Henry Cow Box Set". Dusted Magazine. Retrieved 6 October 2009. 
  6. ^ "Top 100 Recommended CD Reviews (All-time)". All About Jazz. Retrieved 20 April 2009. 
  7. ^ Cutler 2009a, p. 3,37.
  8. ^ Fordham, John (24 September 2013). "Lindsay Cooper obituary". The Guardian. Retrieved 26 September 2013. 
  9. ^ Mack, Shane (19 September 2013). "RIP: Lindsay Cooper, member of Comus and Henry Cow collaborator". Tiny Mix Tapes. Retrieved 20 September 2013. 
  10. ^ Complied by Aymeric Leroy (of The Canterbury Music Website) and Chris Cutler. (Cutler 2009a, p. 59.)
  11. ^ Cutler 2009a, p. 4.
  12. ^ Cutler 2009a, p. 7.
  13. ^ Cutler 2009a, p. 9.
  14. ^ a b c Cutler 2009a, p. 12.
  15. ^ Cutler 2009a, p. 13.
  16. ^ Volume 3 CD liner notes.
  17. ^ Drake, Bob. "Henry Cow 40th Anniversary Box Set remastering notes". Retrieved 10 March 2009. 
  18. ^ a b c Cutler 2009a, p. 15.
  19. ^ Cutler 2009b, p. 19.
  20. ^ Cutler 2009b, p. 5.
  21. ^ Cutler 2009b, p. 6.
  22. ^ Cutler 2009b, p. 43.
  23. ^ a b c "Henry Cow chronology". The Canterbury Music Website. Retrieved 9 July 2008. 
  24. ^ Cutler 2009b, p. 11.
  25. ^ Cutler 2009b, p. 9.
  26. ^ a b Cutler 2009b, p. 8.
  27. ^ Hardach, Sophie (11 August 2008). "For Chen, women hold up half the sky". Reuters. Retrieved 18 March 2009. 
  28. ^ Volume 10 DVD liner notes.
  29. ^ 1000 copies (bonus CD liner notes).
  30. ^ a b Ramond, Michel; Roussel, Patrice; Vuilleumier, Stephane. "Discography of Fred Frith". New York Downtown Scene and Other Miscellaneous Discographies. Retrieved 21 February 2013. 

External links[edit]