Saturday, July 19, 2008

Blue Rondo - Bees Knees & Chickens Elbows

For their second album, Bees Knees & Chickens Elbows, Blue Rondo a la Turk dropped the "a la Turk" from their name, several band members, and everything that made their sound distinctive, i.e. the postpunk edge and the retro big-band sound. What's left sounds like countless other mildly funky British blue-eyed soul bands of the day. The original concept shines through a bit in "Masked Moods" with its smoky lounge vibe, and the rest of the songs are pleasant enough to listen to, but the spark is gone. The band had already broken up anyway by the time the album came out in 1984, so Bees Knees stands more as a last gasp than a document of an evolving band. I wish I could sound more positive about it, but I can still feel the disappointment I felt in 1984 when I got the record home and put it on the turntable. Maybe you will like it, though; get the vinyl rip here or here.

I had a request for Blue Rondo's Too Soon to Come album: that is simply a compilation of tracks from their two original albums with no new material, so if you grab the two album rips here, you've got everything that's on Too Soon to Come.


Jurjen said...

Lot of thanks. I just asked for this yesterday and today it is on your site.

discobunny said...

I look forward to hearing this. Thanks very much.

Stuart said...

Thank you for transferring this - I for one can't wait for CD versions of this and the first album (hurry up, Mr. Sullivan!).
Blue Rondo has to be one of the few bands whose music I love that I didn't see in the 70s and 80s (my first wife's fault!), though I've seen Bosco D'Olivera playing percussion with Terry Callier a couple of times!
I really like Bees Knees and ended up playing this LP a lot more than Chewing The Fat - maybe because it was more song-based?
I don't know - I'm going to stay up late listening to both of these!

chris sullivan - blue rondo founder said...

Everyone has an opinion and sometimes there's more to making a record than meets the eye. But hey we had a go,We are at present re-mastering and remixing Chewing The Fat as we would have liked it so watch out for a 201 release along with a remix album by among others Paul Daley of Left Field,Howie B,Craig Richards,Jon Carter etc.

Fantod said...

Dear Chris,

Thank you for stopping by! I hope you put more credence in my intense affection for Chewing The Fat than my disappointment in Bees Knees. I too am excited about the forthcoming remaster, I'll be spinning both albums in the meantime to build up to it.


Baldrick said...


brummydave said...

Chewing the fat was first album i ever bought and Blue Rondo was first gig i saw (at the open air theatre in Canon Hill Park Birmingham) back in i guess 1982. Still have chewing the fat and Bees Knees and Chicken Elbows on LP. great songs that still bring rythms to my feet and a smile to the face.