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Main » 2008 » August » 24 » Green Pajamas - 1985 - Baroquen Hearts (cassette)
Green Pajamas - 1985 - Baroquen Hearts (cassette)

Baroquen Hearts
is the third release of the Green Pajamas. It was a cassette, recorded at home and came out around 1985 on Tom Dyer's Green Monkey label. It contains what we could call 'embryonic versions' of the music that made GP the greatest psychedelic Northwest group of the last 25 years.

I'm saying 'embryonic versions' because these songs seem to be some of the hundreds that Jeff Kelly wrote and recorded in his reel-to-reel recorder. I don't know when these were actually recorded but - for the most part of it- there was definitely no Green Pajamas (at least at the recording). In fact this sounds more solo than "Coffee in Nepal", that came out under Jeff's name, a couple years later. [Note for the scholars: although it is generally listed as a Green Pajamas release, here is mentioned as Jeff Kelly solo project - and I think rightly so].

From the 14 tracks, only five songs that were played by a full band (A World Without You and I Want You Back (Ooh, Ahh), which are very close to "Summer of Lust" sound, That Face, I'd Still Love You The Same and In a Dream - probably only Jeff and Joe Ross- which by the way is a masterpiece and should be in "Book of Hours"). The rest have no real drummer - in several songs you can hear the synth's rhythm patterns (I'll mention the Syd Barrett influenced "Hang Something Up On The Wall" and "Blue" that with a full band treatment would fit perfectly in "Book of Hours"), many tracks are just guitar or piano and voice, like "Two Greek Boys" and "Those Metal Hearts" respectively, but anyone that has listened to their first period albums (until  "Ghosts of Love") can easily recognize Jeff Kelly's voice and melody lines as well as his stories. It's natural, when you think about it: Jeff Kelly was (and still is) the one who writes 90% of the Green Pajamas songs, so a Jeff Kelly album can't be far away from his band.  
The completists will find a bit more than early GP sound in this: some musical attempts in more synth-pop (!) sound, like "Hang Something Up On the Wall" and "What Lisa Does To Me" (a synth-garage?) or "The Winter of '23", a long dark folk story with banjo, directions that the band didn't follow.

The great thing with all the albums of the Green Pajamas is that they can stand repeated listens - there's always something to find - a turn of the melody, a background instrument or a hidden mood, and Baroquen Hearts, even if it's a semi-Jeff Kelly/Green Pajamas thing, made with less than minimal equipment, is no exception.

For more on the Green Pajamas, take a look here.

This is a rare cassette, not re-issued as most of the other early Jeff Kelly stuff by Camera Obscura, a label that released a lot of Green Pajamas records too.

Opa-Loka, reviewed by Rainy Day Sponge
Category: Psyche/Garage/Folk | Views: 2311 | Added by: Lost-In-Tyme | Rating: 5.0/2 |

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