Thursday, March 30, 2006

Stray - Mudanzas (1973)

Stray were originally formed an amazing 37 years ago at a school in West London when four 14-year-old pupils decided to form a group. Calling themselves "Stray", the band managed to get regular bookings playing mostly soul and R&B covers until guitarist Del Bromham started writing original material which was in a heavier and more psychedelic style. In 1968 they became the youngest band ever to play at the famous 'Roundhouse' and two years later, still only 17 and 18 years old, signed with 'Transatlantic Records'. The first album, Stray is widely regarded as one of the most accomplished debut albums ever, particularly from such a young band.
Primarily a live band, the group still managed to release a new album a year for the next five years, increasing their output to two albums in 1976. The first five albums catalogued a band maturing and experimenting with brass, strings and more complex arrangements with the third album, Saturday Morning Pictures, being the undoubted pinnacle of Stray releases, displaying a maturity that was far in excess of most teenagers. A line-up change in 1975 saw Pete Dyer replace original vocalist Steve Gadd and the band signing to 'Pye Records' with whom they eventually released a three further albums which, with the exception of the excellent Stand Up And Be Counted, never really captured earlier glories. However, in the late 1970s, Stray found themselves out of place amongst the up-and-coming punk and new wave scene playing their last concert in December 1977.
1973-released fourth album from London-based heavy prog/ blues/ proto-metallers, a major influence on the Stoner and Doom movements many years later. Includes the classic 'Oil And Fumes And Sea Air' and 'Hallelujah' (no relation to Deep Purple, Leonard Cohen, Can or Happy Mondays tunes of the same name). Now includes three bonus tracks.Freak Emporium

Track list:
1. Changes
2. Come On Over
3. Alright Ma!
4. Oil Fumes & Sea Air
5. Gambler
6. Hallelujah
7. I Believe It
8. Pretty Thing
9. Soon As You've Grown
10. Leave It Down To Us
plus 3 bonus tracks

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Anonymous said...

Lisa, you've outdone yourself. ive been looking for this forever!

mvcosta said...

Great blog you have here. Thanks for your posts.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for Mudanzas. More Stray please!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

This is great! Do you have the earlier ones? We used to cover some Stray tunes in our band in SF like 15 years ago now.

Lisa Sinder said...

which band - if it's not a secret? ;)

Will take care about Stray in the future ;)

Anonymous said...

Thank you. Other Stray requests:

Suicide (1971)
Movie It (1974)
Houdini (1976)

Anonymous said...

Great Post,Thank You!

Add one Request:

Saturday Morning Picture(3rd Album)

Anonymous said...

The band was called Dope and was around from 87 to 90 maybe. Then it got reformed as a lamer version without me(!). Some folks are now here

Fuin said...

The three bonus tracks are named:
Take A Life
I Believe It

Anonymous said...

Stray's Suicide has just been reissued (by Castle I think) with bonus stuff, which makes it a good purchase (shame I already bought the Walhalla version!)
I'll warn you - Move It isn't so hot, at least not if you're expecting anything like the awesome first 3 albums.
Anyway, thanks for this one, I've wanted to hear it but have been reluctant to try to find a copy to buy, because I don't like how they splashed horns all over the album, having previously heard a couple of sample tracks and read reviews. But the first 3, wow, what a band!
See my reviews of Suicide and the debut at Julian Cope's Head Heritage Unsung reviews page, if you're interested.