The Squid's Ear Magazine


Drake, Bob: Planets & Animals (Recommended Records)

Bob Drake continues to tug on the heart-strings of prog in short but smart songs that reference the best of the last few decades of prog/psych/avant rock forms, Drake as always handling all parts in a great balance of guitar, electronic & acoustic instruments, including some newly invented instruments; includes a fold-out poster in Bob Drake style from Joe Mruk.
 

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product information:

Personnel:



Bob Drake-composer, performer


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Includes a 6 panel fold-out poster with artwork by Drake and lyrics on the reverse side, but a 4 page booklet with titles and artwork.

UPC: 752725043922

Label: Recommended Records
Catalog ID: RERCTA-026
Squidco Product Code: 30119

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2021
Country: UK
Packaging: Jewel Case
Recorded in Caudeval, France, from January to October, 2020, by Bob Drake.

Descriptions, Reviews, &c.

"A pandemic is just an opportunity for some people to spend even more time in the studio. Bob is a minor cult, and this new CD - exquisitely recorded (in a previous life he was an L.A. studio engineer) is a compact suite of short, dense, twisty, jaw-dropping - and highly unusual - songs; a whirlwind for the uninitiated but still surprisingly accessible.

It's his 10th release for ReR, each exploring some new aspect of songwriting, arrangement or production. This time he's added a small menagerie of newly invented instruments to augment his already extensive acoustic and electronic instrumentarium - and the band of Bob that plays them has seldom been larger or tighter.

Beautifully packaged with impressive fold-out artwork by the incomparable Joe Mruk.

Biographical: From 1978-1989 Bob played a key role in Denver's underground music scene and was a founding member of both Thinking Plague and Hail. In Los Angeles, in the early 1990s, he engineered sessions with just about everybody...from Ice Cube to Shirley MacLaine, joined the 5UU's, and began to write and record his mindstretching solo albums.

He has lived in his home studio in Southern France since 1994 where he has played on, recorded, or mixed hundreds of albums. A member of the Peter Blegvad Quintet, The Science Group and Vril, he is also celebrated for his definitive re-masterings of classic albums by Art Bears, Henry Cow, ZNR, Cassiber and others."-Recommended Records


Includes a 6 panel fold-out poster with artwork by Drake and lyrics on the reverse side, but a 4 page booklet with titles and artwork.

Artist Biographies

"Bob Drake was born in Cleveland, Ohio on December 6, 1957, and spent his youth in Watseka, Illinois. There he taught himself how to play guitar and drums, but after hearing Yes's Fragile in 1972, Drake decided he wanted to be a bassist and bought himself a Rickenbacker 4001 bass guitar, which he still uses today. Henry Cow also had a big influence on him: "[T]hey were doing something I felt was a lot closer to what I was imagining I'd like to do - 'complex' intricate songs and arrangements, noisy things going on which fit organically in the music, and less emphasis on 'perfect' studio overcooked impersonal perfection."

Drake experimented with recording techniques and "warped rock", but soon found that no one was interested in "new and strange music" in his rural Midwestern home town. He moved to Denver, Colorado in 1978 where he worked for a while as a sound engineer on B horror movie sets. He also spent time recording local underground bands and playing bass guitar and drums with some of them. Drake put an advertisement at a local music store requesting a guitar player "into Henry Cow, Yes ...", and met up with experimental rock guitarist and composer Mike Johnson. Drake and Johnson played in a few cover bands before forming Thinking Plague in 1982. By 1990 Thinking Plague had recorded three albums and established a name for themselves in progressive circles.

In the late 1980s the Denver music scene "just evaporated" as musicians seeking "greener pastures" moved elsewhere. Drake, "flat broke" at the time, moved to Los Angeles where he found a job as a recording engineer. There he established a name for himself working with several mainstream artists like Ice Cube, Tina Turner and Engelbert Humperdinck. During this time he also formed an alternative rock group, Hail with ex-Thinking Plague's singer Susanne Lewis, and joined Dave Kerman's avant rock group, the 5uu's. Hunger's Teeth, the 5uu's' third album was praised for its "challenging music" and "production values", and made Drake a "sought-after engineer and collaborator".

Drake released his first solo album, What Day is It? in 1994. It was a limited edition (1,000 copies) self released record that Drake pressed himself. He later made five more solo albums, which were all released on ex-Henry Cow drummer Chris Cutler's UK independent record label, Recommended Records. In 1994 Drake and Kerman moved to an old farm house owned by Cutler and Henry Cow's sound engineer EM (Maggie) Thomas in Caudeval, southern France. They converted it into a studio which they called Studio Midi-Pyrenees. Later Drake worked closely with Cutler on a number of projects for Recommended Records, including the remastering of several albums and box sets, for example The Art Box (2004) and The 40th Anniversary Henry Cow Box Set (2009). He also joined Cutler's avant-rock band The Science Group in 1997, in which he played and engineered/produced the group's two albums.

Drake continued to work on and off in the 2000s with Thinking Plague and the 5uu's. In 2007 he formed his own group, Bob Drake's Cabinet of Curiosities to perform material from his solo albums live on stage. The group comprised Drake (guitar, vocals, violin, banjo), Kerman (drums), David Campbell (guitar, bass guitar, vocals) and Jason DuMars (soprano/alto saxophones, keyboards). They played at NEARfest in Pennsylvania in June 2007 with guests Olivier Tejedor (keyboards) and Lynnette Shelley (vocals)."

-Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bob_Drake_(musician))
2/21/2024

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.


Track Listing:



1. On The Production Of Stones 1:37

2. Pangea 1:45

3. Dogstar 1:02

4. Old Sundial Mottoes 2:42

5. Subjective Haloes 2:19

6. Redshift 2:48

7. Railway Crocodiles 1:39

8. Mystery Wolf 1:47

9. Rescue Serpent Version II 3:01

10. Planets And Animals 2:52

11. For Whom Some Minor Planets Are Named 3:39

12. The Table Of Isis 0:59

13. Me And Apocalypse Fox Go To Venus 2:41

14. Whole Lotta Planets 2:37

Related Categories of Interest:


Recommended Records
Drake, Bob
Rock and Related
Progressive Rock
Solo Artist Recordings
Staff Picks & Recommended Items
New in Rock Forms

Search for other titles on the label:
Recommended Records.


Recommended & Related Releases:
Cutler, Chris
Compositions And Collaborations 1972-2022: In A Box [10 CD / DVD / BOOKLET BOX SET]
(Recommended Records)
An amazing collection and reflection on the work of percussionist, composer and connector Chris Cutler of Henry Cow fame and founder of the highly influential Recommended Records label and distribution service, through 10 CDs, 1 DVD and two books of documentation, artwork, photographs, published and unpublished texts in a sturdy box, with over five hours of unreleased materials.
Drake, Bob
Legendary Lore Of The Holy Wells Of England
(Recommended Records)
A unique exposition of an 1893 text by Robert Charles Hope exploring the legends of England's "holy wells", the water of which was purported to have healing properties, adapted to atmospheric songs by Drake and performed on a 1940 Hammond model BC organ and a Challen upright piano; delicate and descriptive songs that detail the legends and the hope they inspired.
Blegvad, Peter
Bandbox [6 CD BOX SET]
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Starting with Blegvad's "Downtime" LP, this box traces the evolution of the Peter Blegvad Trio into a quintet with Karen Mantler and Bob Drake, released in a solid box with a double CD of alternate versions, unreleased material and live performances, plus a 72 page book of photographs, memorabilia, drawings, documents and recollections; the ultimate reissue!



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