Give a Dog a good name


I’ve already related how I came to discover Pavlov’s Dog via an enthusiastic NME review of an import copy of their first album, Pampered Menial by Max Bell that, for the first time, convinced me without hearing a note that I would love this music. But this was 1976, and I knew of nowhere where I could hear the album, or even buy it.
A second album and review followed, in the Autumn: At the Sound of the Bell. Same circumstances, same reviewer, same enthusiasm for a different sound, same conviction that if only I could get to hear this band, I would hear something of tremendous value.
Then in, appropriately, late November, I chanced upon a second hand copy of Pampered Menial and chanced the last £2 of my birthday money on it. Time for a single play before rushing off to Chester for the afternoon, to Law College, enough to bemuse but oddly intrigue, and I spent the evening getting familiar with an album that bore out my instinctive response to Bell’s panegyrics.
And, a couple of weeks later, I used the first of my Xmas money to buy  At the Sound of the Bell. I gave it the usual immediate spin, listening for scratches and scuffs, clicks, sticks and crackle, the standard paraphernalia of buying a vinyl album that I haven’t had to worry about since going CD in 1987. And it did sound different, worryingly so, and I fretted a little until Xmas Day and I could start to get to know it, and to love it too.
Two reviews, two albums, all in the same calendar year. Then nothing. No more reviews, no more releases. No news of anything in the NME, not even by Max Bell. I became resigned to the fact that Pavlov’s Dog were to be no more than the thickness of two single LPs, a tiny fraction in the rack of my collection, eighteen songs and that’s it, finito benito.


It was years later, another decade, before I thought I knew more. I was listening  to Radio One, just about, and a song came on, and I turned to the radio in shock and surprise for surely that was David Surkamp’s voice! But it wasn’t Pavlov’s Dog, not with music like that it couldn’t be. So the band had definitely broke up, and there definitively was to be nothing more.
I was both wrong and right: this wasn’t David Surkamp, but rather Geddy Lee, and Rush, a voice all but identical to Surkamp, but the Dog had split by then, though not without a greater legacy than I knew. Suddenly, an album appeared in another Stockport record shop that I patronised because they were good on stuff like Joy Division, and I fancied the blonde behind the counter: Hi-Fi Demonstration Record it said, on a cover mocked up like those old stereo demonstration records Dad had bought to test out the stereo on the new radiogram. Ian Matthews and David Surkamp, it said. The blonde said that it was something they were considering whether to stock or not, but I suppose I must have been a lone vote because, despite my assuring her I’d buy it, the shop decided against.


The ‘album’ was actually a live 5 track 12” EP of the kind becoming very popular as limited recording cost first releases by hopeful bands (like R.E.M. and Chronic Town), but, unknown to me for many years, Hi-Fi went on to record a full-scale LP before splitting.
But the biggest news was a question for Fred Dellar, who wrote the NME‘s question page, still in 1981, revealing that the Dog had split up but that, the most cruel news of all, before doing so, they had recorded a third LP… that CBS had refused to release because neither of the first two had sold.
This was crushing news, to know that a third album existed, a third set of songs, that I would never get to hear. Remember that this was 1981, and that despite the indie-label era inaugurated by punk, the majors still had absolute control over releases. A third album…


It became a legendary goal for me, an unattainable grail, until, on a rainy Saturday afternoon in Liverpool, at the end of the decade, I attained it. A limited edition bootleg LP, The St. Louis ‘Hounds’, pressed up after the theft of the mastertapes. Its existence was known by then, but I’d stopped reading the NME years before and missed a revelation that would have only made me miserable in trying to locate this treasure.
So, after thirteen years, I had the third album, and it was good. By then, I’d converted the first two albums to CD, a clunky, chunky, double-CD pack taking up a lot of unnecessary space, given that the combined length of the two LPs would have still left space on a single compact disc.
So that was the end of the story, save for getting hold of Hi-Fi’s Demonstration Record which, to be honest, had long since gone out of my head. I don’t know what prompted my memories of it, but something did, and I managed to get hold of a copy, and learn of the hitherto unknown studio album, Moods for Mallards. Wandering around record fairs, asking sellers, I learned a lesson: Pavlov’s Dog were a cult band, but Hi-Fi were a genuine obscurity. Despite including ex-Fairport Convention Ian Matthews as well as Surkamp, ever record dealers had never heard of them.
They weren’t even typical of the Pavlov’s Dog sound that, so improbably, I still loved, being more of a rock-oriented outfit. But as long as it had Surkamp’s voice…
There was a minor diversion sometime in the Eighties or Nineties, I can’t now remember, when I’d gotten onto the mailing list of a rarities specialist, probably because I was still in pursuit of Joy Division obscurities (that were affordable). On one list, something came up under the name of Pavlov’s Dog 2000.
I raced to buy it but on receipt, it proved to be a five track EP, very badly produced, that proved to be a project put together by Mike Safron, the band’s original drummer, who’d only played on Pampered Menial. It had no Surkamp, no relation to the band’s sound and it was crap, and I successfully argued to send it back and get a refund, because the whole thing was a misrepresentation.
However, if you wait long enough, stories never end. On Cup Final day, 1996, I got into London for 9.00am to give myself time for a shopping spree down Oxford Street way. In the big HMV, on a whim, I wandered over to the P’s, to look up Pavlov’s Dog. It was an absurd notion, to think that maybe the third album had been put on CD, and to think of it being in the HMV shop if it had. And it wasn’t, though a CD version would turn up, titled Third, with a revised track-listing, not all that long after, from a German label.
But there was something else: Lost in America. A fourth album, a contemporary album, recorded by a reformed band with a new line-up, but a line-up which included both David Surkamp and original member Doug Rayburn. It’s a disappointment in comparison to the earlier trio of albums, the band having adopted a more conventional Adult Oriented Rock approach but, hey, that’s Surkamp’s voice and there’s one real killer track on there in You and I.


I was still looking for Moods for Mallards  and still drawing blanks, but in the late Nineties, that quest came to an end in the most unlikely circumstances.
I was working for my most hated employers and every Friday would see me head home via Manchester, spending an hour among the life-restoring atmosphere of books, in Waterstones, to be followed by a Buy-One-Get-One-Half-Price deal on medium pizzas that saw me through Friday and Saturday tea.
For some reason, in early December, I was in Town on a midweek night, and browsing in the big HMV Store on Market Street. There was still a tiny vinyl section at that time and I was in the Hs, looking for the recently released Half Man, Half Biscuit album. For some reason, call it an affectation if you wish, after they had reformed I was still collecting albums as LPs, not CDs. And I was thumbing through the albums when I caught sight of a garish, yellow on blue title bar reading Moods for Mallards.
A smile was already crossing my face, amusement at the thought that someone else had used the exact same title, before I looked at the left hand end of the said bar, to a little black circle in which it said, in white lettering, Hi-Fi.
This was utterly unbelievable. A rare album by a band so obscure, not even specialist record-dealers had heard of them and, over a decade after its release I find it shrink-wrapped in the big HMV Store in Manchester? I still cannot think of any explanation that makes sense. Yet the proof was in my hand, and I was paying for it at the till.
As this was December, I decided to make the album into a Xmas present for myself, and left it in its shrink wrap. It was the evening by the time I got to Moods for Mallards, carefully unwrapping it, laying it reverentially on the turntable and pressing play before returning to my chair and my wine. Before hearing a scraping, screeching sound with only slivers of music.
I raced back to the hi-fi, lifted the needle and spun the record off the deck to look at it. It was not so much warped as corrugated, almost a third of its circumference bent into a succession of waves by the record having been left too close to a heat source at some point. It was, literally, unplayable. I took it back and got a refund.


It was not until the Twenty-First Century, and the internet that I finally got a playable copy, with little difficulty. And, with the perversity that so often stalks me when it comes to music, having bought the record for its connection with the Dog and David Surkamp, my favourite track turned out to be one written and sung by Ian Matthews, Throw a Line.
In the end, a year or so back, a CD collection of the complete Hi-Fi, with a couple of rarities was released, and after all that chasing, I replaced both records.
The revived band, having recorded Lost in America as far back as 1990, seemed to have been very much a one-off thing, and as I was paying no attention to any kind of music press, I wasn’t hearing anything, except in occasional dribs and drabs. There was a Surkamp solo single that I nabbed via eBay, a strange, slow, draggy version of Louie Louie that I really wasn’t sure about, and then a solo album, Dancing on the Edge of a Teacup that I held off sampling, because this was now when money was tight and eBay auctions or seriously reduced second hand prices on Amazon was the order of the day.


I did download a superb track off YouTube, a majestic, powerful song credited to Pavlov’s Dog, Life in Imperfect Times, a true throwback to their classic sound, though I eventually learned it was from Surkamp’s solo (which is sub-titled ‘The Pavlov’s Dog Trinity Sessions’).


And there was another new album by the Dog, in 2010, Echo and Boo, and assorted Small Tails, which was another victim of economic straitenedness, until last Xmas when, flush with eBay sales, I treated myself to a double splash, and found both albums to be worthy additions to the canon.
By then, however, that third album had finally been released officially, under its original planned title, Has Anyone Here Seen Sigfried? (a reference to the band’s violinist, Richard Nadler, who went under the name of Sigfried Carver). And with no less than ten bonus tracks. Sigfried restored the original running order from The St. Louis ‘Hounds’, and included sleeve notes from Surkamp that made it plain how much he’d hated the record, but here it was, with demo tracks, live recordings and some never-released songs.


I fell upon it with glee, and even ended up replacing that clunky double-CD of the first two albums as these two were also re-issued with bonus tracks. Lost in America got the same treatment, though I’ve yet to upgrade to that, nor acquire the Live and Unleashed CD, featuring the current version of the band on stage.
But it’s thirty-nine years since Max Bell’s two enthusiastic reviews, and it’s still not done. All this reminiscing has been sparked by the chance discovery via Amazon, and the deliberate acquisition of another Pavlov’s Dog album, The Pekin Tapes. No, not another new album, the very opposite of it. The Tapes are Pavlov’s Dog’s original first album, recorded in 1974 when the band was in its infancy, and then Steve Scorfina and David Hamilton also shared lead vocals on songs written by them.


Five of the tracks survived onto Pampered Menial, where they got polished into the hurricane-loud and dramatic versions I’ve been familiar with so long, under the production of Sandy Pearlman and  Murray Krugman, the Blue Oyster Cult producers (Scorfina was an ex-Cult guitarist). Another, Carver’s Preludin and Exordium in E. Minor, runs to its full eight minutes instead of being cut down to about ninety seconds for Pampered Menial, whilst the ‘new’ tracks are simply nothing at all like the band I’ve long known.
As a bonus, there’s an even earlier set of four tracks from 1973, the very earliest demos known.
And that’s not all. Has Anyone Here Seen Sigfried? has been re-mastered and re-issued with the original planned running order and different bonus tracks. The re-mastering is reputedly superb, having been made from the original master-tapes which have re-surfaced. The only comment on Amazon recommends buying it to keep alongside the original release.

And then there’s Of Once and Future Kings, another new CD, another live performance, but of the classic band, mastered from tapes of a live radio broadcast, which is an absolute must for me, being as close to time travel as I’m likely to see in my lifetime.

Once upon a time, and a very long time it was, it was two albums in a rack, a tiny slice of space. All That There Was and All That There Would Be. After all, this was a cult band, and cults aren’t meant to be wide and expansive. But it isn’t like that any more. Someday Soon I’m going to have a CD collection that runs almost into double figures and takes up considerably more room on a shelf than I’d ever have imagined. All for a cult band. I shake my head in wonder at the vastness of it all.

 

Pavlov’s Dog – Pampered Menial


The whole point of music is to listen to it, right? (Please, no objections from the dance fans in the background, there). You listen, you like, you buy, or illegally download, an option that has only latterly come onto the table. You may buy the music sight, er, unheard as it were, but this is the case in respect of music that comes from a trusted source, music with a proven background. You don’t just go out, unless you are an eccentric more proven than I, and buy completely unknown music based solely on a single New Musical Express review.
In the case of this album however, that’s exactly what I did.
The credit goes to Max Bell, one of the many mid-Seventies rock journalists who came together in all their sprawling, arguing glory to make Nick Logan’s NME the impossibly wonderful weekly thrill it was in that most elegantly wasted of decades (pre-punk, naturally). He’s less well-known or remembered than the likes of Charles Shaar Murray, Mick Farren and Nick Kent, principally because his focus was more upon the less-bloated, more inventive American music of the decade: Steely Dan and Little Feat to quote two disparate examples.
Indeed, whilst everyone remembers Farren’s legendary ‘Titanic’ article about Seventies music, only those of us there at the time now recall that Max Bell wrote a rebuttal to Farren a couple of weeks later, championing those American based favourites, including Bell’s own, idiosyncratic, short-lived discovery, Pavlov’s Dog.
It began with a record review, sometime around the February/March of 1976, of an import copy of Pampered Menial, the Dog’s first album. Bell loved it, regarded it with a passion close to awe, and in some fashion managed to communicate that to me, leaving me with the conviction that here was an album I was sure to enjoy. If I ever heard it.
Now that’s rare. I’ve read forty years worth of raves about music I didn’t know, and there’s been no more than a dozen occasions when I’ve come out of them with the belief that I will like this when I hear it. And one of those other occasions was Bell’s review of the Dog’s follow-up, At the Sound of the Bell.
Not that I did anything about it. Import album, unknown band, not heard anywhere. I was in my last year at university, Final Exams dead ahead, six month Law College course if I were successful, all on a small grant that my widowed mother couldn’t afford to supplement beyond bed and board. Most of the music I bought was second hand: I wasn’t going to splash out on imports, even if I could have found them. We had a Virgin Records in Manchester, but it was a hole-in-the-wall, authentically underground shop, not the megastores we got used to in the Eighties.
And no-one was playing Pavlov’s Dog. In the whole of my life I think there has been exactly one occasion that I have heard the Dog being played other than when I’ve put it on (which was in that old and tatty Manchester Virgin Records, incidentally, but much later).
Let us move on to mid-November that same year. Bell had written an equally glowing review of At the Sound of the Bell, further cementing my belief that I was going to love this band when I finally got to hear it. I was now at Law College, an afternoon course based near Chester, driving over every day, courtesy of my ex-schoolmate Glyn, who fancied six months home comforts after three years at LSE getting his Law Degree. Forty-five minutes each way on the A556.
I’d just celebrated my 21st birthday and had birthday money to spare. One Friday, I took the bus into Stockport to wander round, before getting back to be collected by Glyn at 12.45. I ended up in a second hand record shop, long since gone, on Little Undergate, a strange place dedicated mainly to much older music than that which inspired me, but which did have a section for pop/rock LPs.
And which had a copy of Pampered Menial for £2, which was the exact amount of birthday money I had left.
So I bought it, caught the bus home and had just enough time to play it once before Glyn would arrive. Once, to find it a strange, curious album of a kind that I was not at all prepared form, despite Max Bell’s reviews. Time only to play it once: but all afternoon at Christleton little bits of the songs, odd phrases, little riffs, snaked through my head in a way that albums more in tune with my then tastes (favourite band at the time, 10cc) didn’t do. I looked forward to getting home and playing it again.
The band, for this album, consisted of David Surkamp (vocals, guitars and most songwriting), ex-Blue Oyster Cult Steve Scorfina (lead guitars), David Hamilton (not that one)(keyboards), Doug Rayburn (mellotron and flute), Sigfried Carver (violin), Rick Stockton (bass) and Mike Safron (drums).
I always loved playing this album to unsuspecting friends: it opens, in seemingly quiet, conventional manner, with Julia, whose quiet, solo piano introduction gives no warning of the moment when, the solo done, an acoustic guitar replacing it, and Surkamp opens his mouth to sing the title word in an unearthly voice like none you’ve heard before and like nothing your mind has associated with the music thus far. Wikipedia describes it as a “high-pitched and quickly wavering vibrato” and Max Bell as “a gopher dancing on a hot-plate”, and whilst the one may be the more practical and descriptive, the other puts an image in your head that forty years still hasn’t dimmed.
It stuns and distracts, but over the course of an album Surkamp either overpowers you with his flexibility and sheer power, or he repels you with his strangeness and difference, and in that deciding is your response to this album.
Julia is a love song, as are many more on this album, and in many ways it’s the straightest song of them all, but it’s a song that, beneath its conventional trappings, is about power in a relationship. And Surkamp is aware from the opening line, explaining that Julia has ‘set the standards for me’, that he ‘couldn’t do much better than you’, a thing that Julia has already ‘said so yourself’. He’s the supplicant, almost the victim, and he confesses, with an intensity rarely invested in words that are a romantic cliché, that ‘I can’t live without your love’.
And the band swells behind and around him, opening up for the first time on this album, as Surkamp’s heart goes into his words and the mellotron swells in that pompous sound that characterised its every use by every band, with Safron’s drums high and hard and Hamilton’s piano, until the chorus dissolves into Surkamp and Scorfina’s acoustic guitar, now supported by the rhythm section, lightly, in further confessions that further tip the balance from understanding this as a love story we’ve previously heard.
Julia is ‘driving me crazy/but I’m a part of your plans’, and this time the band follow, swelling again into force as Surkamp pleads with Julia to ‘see how much you mean to me’. The verse exhausted, the music cools, Rayburn contributing a soothing, complex flute solo that suspends the moment, but only until Surkamp’s passions break through and he’s once more pleading that he can’t live without her love, and rising into a scream, before returning to an endless cycle that we now know will never be broken for him, never be answered or resolved, even in the final surrender of ‘And I can’t live without you, Julia’.
Late November is more characteristic of the band’s sound on this album, developing from a cool sliding riff from co-writer Scorfina that underpins the forward motion of the song. Surkamp’s voice sings from inside the song as the band unleash a slick, swift power. It’s again a love song, but again the perspective is skewed. Surkamp sings about a woman he loves, a woman who baffles him, a woman who has come to him, who ‘wants it badly’, who’s ‘coll, yeah she’s coll/she’s just like lightning’, who ‘held me close/came down from night skies’.
But ultimately he’s only ever singing from outside, because he doesn’t understand her, what motivates her, what makes her leave so easily, doesn’t even know if she understands herself. ‘She just goes to show you never know/What’s in your heart, what’s in your soul’. In the end, is his love love or is it compassion? ‘Take her home, keep her warm/in Late November’?
Strange lovers and strange loves. Scorfina is again to the fore in Song Dance (written by drummer Mike Safron), a song that shifts from phase to phase without ever sounding disjointed as the band, hard and tight, give room to each other. From Scorfina’s beautiful opening solo, to a moments of silence in which the band deliberately builds tension before syncing into a blazing riff, from the crazed violin solo that is Carver’s first chance to show his chops, but mostly its an unstoppable power, a music of fire and energy, over which Surkamp sings paeans to music, to rhythm and rocking, getting ready for a Song Dance tonight: ‘It’s morning now/I want to show you how/
Got to keep on moving, running to the sounds’
He even has the confidence to cool everything down, to almost whisper a confession of love: ‘Teach me a song, I’ll dance for you/ I won’t mind what you’re playing for me’,but is the lover he petitions a woman or the rhythm of the Song Dance?
Fast Gun is lead in by Carver, shaping another powerful, mellotron supported intro into a brief tale about a Fast Gun, a gunslinger, trying to make Surkamp run, thinking he’ll shoot him down. But Surkamp knows he never will. It’s easy to pretend, to wear your guns down low, to dress in black and pull triggers, ‘because the fast gun’s got troubles of his own’ and the guns are a front for a massive insecurity about his relationship with his girl. ‘Would a half breed cowboy lose her/
You never know’.
But if the music of Fast Gun builds into a passion, it can’t yet match the last song on Side One, Natchez Trace, where the band lets loose with a vengeance and Surkamp’s voice soars into even greater realms of power. Just remember what you are listening to, a mid-Seventies progressive band, with all the ills that implies, a band that makes major use of a mellotron, that most stodgy instrument of the progressive era, a guarantee of pomposity instead of the drama besought.
Yet Natchez Trace soars quickly, hits a staggeringly sharp guitar/organ riff and cleaves to that hard and long, decorating its main theme with piano at one point, organ at another but never leaving that spinal theme. Surkamp sings frantically, caught a long way from home, in dangerous surroundings. Nature and ‘one bad woman’ threaten him, and she is ‘waiting by the Natchez Trace/with all her silver thread and coal black lace/and when she puts you in your resting place/would you take my gold or leave my soul unscathed’.
Surkamp sings in fear and fascination, viewing love for yet another of its skewed perspectives, as the band hit the trail for home and ride it, hell for leather. Is this really the progressive music we now recall being so overblown and clever for its own sake?
In the moments between transferring the needle from side 1 to side 2, let me pause to educate our younger readers as to the fabled mellotron. The mellotron – espoused most popularly by the likes of The Moody Blues and Barclay James Harvest – was a keyboard instrument, and a very slow and unreliable one at that. Depressing its keys did not strike or pluck strings, nor unleash the natural or electronic power of organ pipes. The mellotron played tapes: little two to two-and-a-half second long strips of recording tape, installed in the machine, by pressing playback heads down on the selected fragments of orchestral recordings.
The intention was to enable rockbands, at a time when experimental rock/classic fusions were on the rise, to incorporate orchestral sounds into their music without either the cost of hiring a symphony orchestra or the disgust of the orchestra at being called upon to play such simplistic stuff. Unfortunately, with the exception of one band, who managed to integrate the mellotron sound in a grandiose, as opposed to pompous manner – and guess which band I’m talking about? – the mellotron was disastrously stodgy, and cripplingly slow.
But in the hands of the Dog, it soared. It brought balletic heights to a powerful, well-muscled sound, that could raise and lower tension almost at will, a tight, hard sound that Surkamp’s voice surged over, with precision, delicacy and force.
Side 2 starts in fine style, with my favourite track from the album, Theme from Subway Sue, a title that’s puzzled me for more than three decades until I finally learned that it was an in-joke: eccentric violinist Sigfried Carver (who would go on to become a conservative newspaper commentator under his real name, Richard Nadler) kept mishearing the opening line of the chorus as ‘Subway Sue’, instead of ‘Someday soon’ and the gag took.
Once again, Surkamp is consumed with the thought of love. He’s in love, she’s in love, but the relationship is precarious. They’re a long way from elsewhere, watching the mountains, and soon it will be time to move, to ‘take off down the river’. But will he travel alone, ‘if the love that you have for me is going’?
He asks ‘the birds not to show which way I’m going/Tell the leaves to try and hide the way’ because he’s as unsure as she is, but the river beckons, the way forward calls, but what future is it to be? ‘And Someday soon/we’ll take off down the river/someday soon/we’ll find the way/but if the love that you had for me is going/then I’ll see nothing of you at all’.
It doesn’t matter: he sings soft, he sings strong, the band ebb and surge in echo to his feelings, Scorfina ripping out some fine riffs, but the uncertainty is all, in the end, that he possesses, and the fear grows until he lets rip with a scream that is all the more powerful for emerging from that high register and the band raise the rafters as he thrashes in his pain until everything drains out of him and it ends, without an answer.
For a moment, Episode offers tranquillity, a quiet, piano-based ripple, a miasma of quiet guitars, but this is only a false dawn. Surkamp watches his love, ‘walking on a rainy day/toss(ing) some petals into a pool’. She’s to bide her time, and wait for him, but with this declaration the song takes on a stranger turn, the band opening up again, and Surkamp’s lyrics descending into fantasy, until we start to wonder whether he’s lover seeking love or stalker pursuing obsession.
She’s to pretend she’s a dancer or a queen, archers shoot an arrow on past the sun, Surkamp is just her soldier, should she be the keeper of of his mind and heart, ‘or is it best to go unseen’? He projects his fantasies onto her but they are strange and unstable. At the end, when he sings ‘You think you got control, you don’t,/you’ll never know, you’ll never know’, just who is it that he’s speaking of?
A brief interlude follows, a chance to look away, trust only in our ears, as the band sweep through Carver’s brief instrumental, Preludin (the original, 10 minute version of this piece, played live in 1975, is a bonus track on the 2007 re-mastered reissue) and then it is time for the final track, the monumental Of Once and Future Kings.
The album ends in a manner closer to the stereotypical image of Seventies progressive rock, in fantasy and pomposity. Over Carver’s violin, Surkamp narrates a vision of an Arthurian scene: All the ladies of court gather round/Joined in heavenly fair/Gathering promises of future heroes/Young faith it is all as you go/Red light and green light and men in their armor/And fight for the queen if you dare/It’s a long way to go to test out your mettle/Long way to go to go down’
Just as the listener is lost in this dream, the scene and the music change: sudden, fast, skittery. A disaster has swept through, the archaic and timeless vision has had time occur, no quarter has been given because of their art, they are being killed in the wild, their wives and children taken, despite all pleas for forgiveness.
For a moment, the dream is restored, Surkamp paints his vision again in the exact same words, but this time it cannot hold. The dream cracks and breaks,the trip is over, mad necessity floods in a Surkamp screams in pain, expertly riding the furious edge of the band giving it all, a sonic overdose as Scorfina solos frenetically. You better do down, and with a final roll on the piano, the song does, the album does, the experience ends and the music leaves echoes that will never truly fade.
In America, Pampered Menial‘s prospects of success, Pavlov’s Dog being very big in and around their St Louis base, were hampered by it being released, then with drawn, on two different major labels, before finally settling on Columbia Records. In Britain, it was released on CBS. Very few people bought it, but I’m very glad I was one of them.