The Unusual Electric Shocks of Roger Ruskin Spear

In this blog's world, The Great British Band Of The Sixties isn't those loveable mop-tops from Liverpool (good as they were), but of course, the Bonzo Dog Band. Tho comparing them to the Beatles isn't quite accurate, as the Beatles were pretty much a straight-ahead (if wildly creative) rock band, and the Bonzos were a Dada/ jazz/ comedy/ psychedelic / performance-art / avant-'tarde / rock band. And Roger Ruskin Spear - he of home-made robots, fanciful stage props, explosions, and performing on a theremin hidden in a mannequin's leg - carried on the band's traditions perhaps more faithfully than his two more celebrated band mates Viv Stanshall and Neil Innes, both of whom went off into some rather non-Bonzo-like (tho frequently rewarding) directions. Spears' two solo albums in the early '70s following the band's dissolution sticks with the original Bonzo plan of playing crazed "trad" jazz, rock parodies, covers of forgotten old novelty records, and wildly inventive original creations, all drenched in good-humored absurdity. When I first came across a copy of "Electric Shocks" in a thrift store in the '90s, I'd had no idea that Spears had made any solo albums. I certainly wasn't expecting it to be as good as it was.  Originally it's follow-up album "Unusual" was posted here as well, but something, er, unusual happened to the files, so we're only posting "Electric Shocks." Hopefully I'll get a good uncorrupted copy of "Unusual" cuz it's a goodie. But to make it up to you, three bonus tracks have been added.

Roger Ruskin Spear "Electric Shocks"

1. All by Yourself in the Moonlight
2. I'm a Fly
3. Mattress Man
4. Blue Baboon
5. The Liberty Laughing Song
6. Doctor Rock
7. Patrick Moore
8. Make Yourself a Happiness Pie
9. Livin' Doll
10. Call Of The Freaks  (BBC radio flash 10-08-1971)
11. Drop Out (single b-side)
12. Trouser Freak (single) 

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