Saturday, October 29, 2016

Rocky Horror Show - Original London Cast

So in honor of the Halloween tradition of themes I could not possibly have a Rocky Horror review. Yes each year I do this I'll do a different version of Rocky Horror until I run out or am tired of it. But that beings said, I still have the Film, Brazilian, Australia, Mexican, Norwegian, New Zealand cast albums to do for sure. This features the almost original cast, minus Julie Covington who was replaced for a reason I forget, by Belinda Sinclair as Janet. This also features Tim Curry, Patricia Quinn, Nell Campbell and Richard O'Brien who are also in the Film (the first and last are in the Roxy cast also). This is missing some song on the Roxy one (Eddies Teddy, both versions of Charles Atlas and Planet Shmanet Janet)
  1. Science Fiction - Double Feature: Sung by The Usherette, or Patricia Quinn to be exact, this is much more bare than the other version I've done before. This has just vocals an acoustic guitar in the beginning. It almost feels like a demo, but even when the rest come in it still feels that way. I really like the piano arpeggios and the acoustic guitar on the track. There's a solid bass line and the drums are nice. I like the use of the cymbals on the track. I like this arrangement quite a bit. They make use of the fewer instruments. The voice really sounds like a kid, like honestly. She sounds like a little kid singing this introduction, which if you look at this as a "coming of age" or "realization" tale I think it's a nice touch, even though I could see you going some of what she's saying.... is that appropriate. There is also a harmony vocal I'm not sure if it's a bass or a vocal. I like that quite a bit.
  2. Damn It, Janet: This is a solid rendition of the song, that has a simpler arrangement in my mind. I really think the singing works, but I also really like that acoustic guitar quite a bit. There is something that's just fun about this you know. This is a solid and memorable tune and usually has a great version.
  3. Over at the Frankenstein Place: Opening with a narration, which I'm glad is there, this is another great tune from the show. I really like this version too, the chorus is probably the highlight of the tune. Does everyone's vocals sound phenomenal... not really, but I do like it quite a bit. And I really like that slide guitar, this song has a great sort of build. It doesn't hit a huge epic feeling but it does hit what it needs to to not underwhelm. 
  4. Sweet Transvestite: This is another great tune, and I like the performance from Curry, though it's not as punchy as the following versions. I could see this being a crazy person... Okay, when I hear this arrangement what I imagine is a crazy man who likes musicals and has people play while he talks and sings everything. Like an eccentric rich, scientist/socialite. I think it fits.
  5. Time Warp: This is a solid version, and I really like Richard's vocals. I think this is far more fun than the actual film version, while it isn't as together as some others this is still fun none the less. It's harmless to be honest. The woman kinda reminds me a bit of Frenchie from The Forbidden Zone. Actually this song kind of, and album, feels like it might fit in that type of movie.
  6. Sword of Damocles: Track is sung by Rocky and Company, and I mean the vocals are really high but I don't know.... I kinda like this version. It feels like a fast 50's tune.
  7. Hot Patootie (Bless My Soul): Whatever Happened to that Saturday Night track? I really dug it, I really dig this song too. Wonder if that's a coincidence. I do like Paddy's vocals on this, but I really think Meat Loaf shine's more on later versions. This is still a great verison and I love the harmonies.
  8. Touch-A-Touch-Touch-A-Touch Me: I think the star of this version is definitely the keyboard, that I believe to be an ARP. The piano is great too, but I love the backing vocals too. This is a much simpler arrangement but equally as effective for what it's conveying. And I don't hold the weaker vocals against Janet. I also like the Hot Patootie reprise in the harmonies. Nice touch.
  9. Once in a While: This is a nice number, it's pretty relaxing and heartfelt. I like the drums on this track, and the piano, and acoustic guitar. The vocals aren't that great, but the instrumentation works.
  10. Rose Tint My World: I actually have grown to love this song, the Roxy Cast version is an all time favorite song.  This is a pretty solid revision of the song too, the only thing is that it doesn't have the same... it's not as focused. Like I do dig this piano and the arrangement but there isn't the cocky, flamboyant Curry I need for the second section or third. The transitions don't work as well as on later versions, I know I've repeated myself, but I think this is worth a listen. This is still a good song, but not as well executed. I really like that saxophone at the ending, and Tim really shows off. I don't know why he toned it down so much earlier. Like charisma wise. This also nice piano, even though it's off a bit, but that's fine.
  11. I'm Going Home: Now, I don't think I've heard a bad version of this song. Really of all the version I've heard they've all done a solid job with this tune, even the film. This version isn't as emotional as I'd like, but it's fine. It's still kinda of upbeat, it's not like he's finally been defeated you know. 
  12. Superheroes: This is a solid version and is more in line with that I was looking for from the prior track, but it still works. It's a sad ending.
  13. Science Fiction - Double Feature (Reprise): Closing we get a reprise of the track that opened the album. It actually comes and goes pretty damn fast.
Overall I have to give this album a 7/10. I don't think the film version should even be close to the definitive version for the songs. They kinda fucked some of them. This small budget, and cheap and sleazy and like a debut album or a rehearsal tape. The Roxy shows are more along the lines of when they perfected the songs and know exactly how to do them, you got a deal and you have someone focusing your stuff. I think, in terms of English speaking ones, it's between this and the Roxy as the best. But I think which one you chose is more inline with what you're looking for; cheap, campy and charming all at the same time, or more realized or focused with better playing and more confidence. That's not a dig btw, I prefer the Roxy but I still really dig this album.

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