of the Week [Recordings
of Indeterminate Origin]
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Many Bee Gees
fans will probably fall into two categories - fans of the "early" Bee
Gees will clamour for songs such as Words, New York Mining Disaster 1941,
Massachusetts, I Started A Joke, First Of May and I've Gotta Get A Message
To You. Then there are those who prefer the Bee Gees of Saturday Night
Fever and the disco and post-disco era. But in the early '70s, Bee Gees
fans had a tough choice to make. Melody Fair was a big hit and so was
Run To Me from To Whom It May Concern (1972). The following year, the
group released Life In A Tin Can. At the same time, their contemporaries
were offering loud, opinionated and passionate rock. Life In A Tin Can
was an unfortunate album title.
Depending on who you read, the next album, now commonly known as A Kick In The Head Is Worth Eight In The Pants (1973), was said "to be rejected by their record company as 'not good enough'." As reported on the internet, according to Ahmet Ertegun and others remembering in 2000, the album was probably withheld by Robert Stigwood, based on poor sales of Life In A Tin Can and the Wouldn't I Be Someone single. No matter what, the new album was never released. The brothers have since dismissed this as a weak album.
But two tracks stand out. Both seemed out of sorts for a Bee Gees album, like a "kick in the head" - Jesus In Heaven and Dear Mr Kissinger. Both offered social commentary with the Kissinger song voicing concern over the Vietnam War. He was, of course, the US Secretary of State, Henry Kissinger. Other songs had an element of soul-searching in a ballad form. The boys never made this lapse again, cementing their songwriting permanently on love songs for the next decades. Of the other songs that were recorded, King And Country, Elisa and It Doesn't Matter Much To Me eventually found their way into the Tales From The Brothers Gibb boxset released in 1990. The Jesus song and Dear Mr Kissinger have since remained locked in the vault.
Many fans feel that it was the rejection of this album that led the Bee Gees to a rethink and a new musical path that was more R&B based that culminated in Saturday Night Fever. It was also probably the last album where Barry Gibb wasn't as nasal as he would later become, starting from Mr Natural (1974). When Maurice Gibb died, he didn't strike a worldwide sense of loss that John Lennon's death summoned. The sentiments of Saturday Night Fever are very far from Imagine. - Stephen Tan
As far as we can
ascertain, with the exception of four tracks, the rest of the album has
never been officially released.
Click here to buy the missing tracks.
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