Monday, February 25, 2019

The Siegel-Schwall Band - Same - No. 203

The Siegel-Schwall Band - Same

I bought my copy of the Siegel-Schwall Band's "Same" around mid to end 70s. It was (and still is) one of these lightweight records that come in way below 100 grams. In fact, the thing is so paper thin, that it almost folds itself when you hold it on one edge and let gravity do the rest. But, the pressing is of excellent quality and still plays amazingly clean. If those nerds come hopping along and brag about their 180 grams records (and conveniently forget to mention that theirs crackle, have non-fills and represent fruitbowls), I know what I have and prove the world wrong, jumping on a marketing train that does nothing for sonic quality.

I didn't know this back then, but I realised, that the pressing was something special, not just because of the little weight, but also because of the clarity in sound. I became a huge fan ot the Siegel-Schwall band, although at the time, I couldn't tell you what blues was supposed to be and strangely enough, when I heard it, there was no way I could say what it was. Blues it was and from the start, this record stayed with me. Years later, this album ist still in my top ... whatever. One killer track after the other.

It's not only the music, there's a great cover painting as well. And the shots (portraits of the members of the band) on the back of the cover are something to appreciate. Each track is a classic and I don't vote one above the other ... except "Hush Hush" which gives me goose bumps every time I hear it. The track lives on harp and it's so intense, yet a slow exhibition piece of a master playing the instrument. It's not highspeed harmonica. The rhythm is kind of hypnotizing and at 10:45, you've got all the time in the world to get carried away. The band could easily have drawn this out to half an hour. Hey, but wait, this is not all you get, around minute seven, there's a halting, laid back bass solo, the like you've never heard in your life.

Easy, spaced and not a lot of notes played, but Jesus Christ, what a performance. I know every note and can master it by now on my airbass. The clapping of the audience between the notes does something else entirely before Rollow speeds it up again and the band comes in at full force. A dream! This is one of the tracks I could have on repeat playing all week long.

In fact, no, I'd play the whole album in a loop, don't forget there's "(Wish I Was On A) Country Road", "Leavin'" and "Corinna" as well plus other tracks. When I'm sitting at my desk, writing text, the CD has to do. In my living room, the glorious LP goes into action. The latter is the way I got to know this island album. I'm a bit short on breath now, just by listening to Corky. I'm sure you all know the album, just wanted to go public with what I think about one of the greatest albums ever released.



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