Moondog - and his Friends / 10"
Originally released in 1953, this collection of very early Moondog pieces features the same tribal rhythmic impulse as his famed Prestige recordings, but there's an impressive line in chamber music running through these compositions: the B-side is dedicated to two suites for strings, which could easily pass for more traditional works were it not for the heavy bongo presence (something Haydn, Mozart et al were always sorely missing). Essentially though you can hear a sense of discipline, and a thorough working knowledge of conventional classical composition in Moondog's work, even if he ultimately chooses to subvert it. All this is further destabilised by slightly weirder excursions like 'Tree Frog - Be A Hobo', which fit into some odd percussion-centric take on what might loosely be termed as a 'song'. More idiosyncratic, entirely uncategorizable work from one of 20th century music's true mavericks.
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