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Continental Circus
Mantra 089/642089 || 1994 (1972) || £11.49 USD  EUR  JPY  + p+p +tax

(Sorry, no longer available.)

Gong's distinctly cheese flavoured soundtrack album for Jérôme Laprrousez's film on motorbike racing.

Great, psychedeliclly mantric soundtrack. 'Blues For Findlay', the first track, sets the pace and space of the music to follow with it's insistent simple bass lines and sprinkling of drums and cymbals backing daevid's prime wah-wah guitar and gliss based curlicues as he sings (Gilli's words?) of racing motorbikes with a certain out there pataphysical twist. Track two 'Continental Circus World' is a tape-loop/sound collage utilizing extracts of the film's dialogue and sound effects mixed with musical elements which has daevid's signature all over it. Track 3, 'What Do You Want?', is an archetypical early Gong gliss based groove which will sound remarkably familiar to all lovers of 'Camembert Electrique' as it is in fact basically a brand new 'Fohat Digs Holes in Space' of a different hue. This makes sense of the solo Gilli Smyth writing credits on something so alienish - it was a financial/political necessity. The last track, a different instrumental version of track one, continues the glissy, spacey guitar and Bloomdido tootling early Gong vibe we all love so much. When the film was released in 1972 the Gong band played a series of short sets performing the soundtrack live before the showing of the film at selected cinemas in France.

Since writing the first part of this I've been told that in fact 'Continental Circus' was recorded well before either 'Camembert Electric' or 'Obsolete' despite being released some time after those albums and is Pip Pyle's earliest work with Gong. So the similarity of 'What Do You Want' to 'Fohat Digs Holes in Space' is because the former developed out of the latter. I'll check on this development info.

The original LP was released on Phillips in 1972 will now cost you the average monthly wage of an Ivorian fisherman should you find a mint copy. What we have here is the early 90's Mantra jewelcase CD issue which sounds just at good at a quarter the price.

"Heh, heh, heh… this accident bad …heh, heh, heh." (That's a quote from the soundtrack, not a comment on the album. Now where is the DVD of this film?)

Tracks: [34'16]
  1. Blues For Findlay[11'18] (Gilli Smyth/Gilli Smyth and Jérôme Laprrousez)
  2. Continental Circus World[4'13] (Gilli Smyth and Jérôme Laprrousez)
  3. What Do You Want?[9'06] (Gilli Smyth)
  4. Blues For Findlay - Instrumental[9'39] (Gilli Smyth)
  • daevid allen {Guitar, vocals}
  • Didier Malherbe {Saxophones}
  • Pip Pyle {Drums}
  • Gilli Smyth {Vocals}
  • Christian Tritsch {Bass}
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