Musician - 8/92, p.94
"..This could be the soundtrack to your next mock-beatnik party...an intriguing ear-stretcher.."
Record Collector (magazine) - p.864 stars out of 5
-- "Street noises, foghorns, tap-dancing and a howling dog all add to the unique atmosphere, primal rhythms and unusual structures of these scarcely-heard Moondog compositions."
Record Collector (magazine) - p.1383 stars out of 5
-- "[This] pairs two albums recorded for jazz label Prestige in the mid-'50s, a mind-blowing mix of weird syncopation...and titles such as 'Ostrich Feathers Played On Drums'..."
Originally released on Prestige (7069/7099).
This disc combines two albums Moondog recorded in 1956 and 1957 for the Prestige label. The music is highly percussive and orchestral in its sweep and approach, though utilizing only a small number of players, primarily Moondog himself. At the time of these recordings he was familiar sight in Manhattan, performing as a street musician.
Therefore, it comes as no surprise that the set opens with his duet for bamboo pipe (played by Moondog) and the Queen Elizabeth whistle--that is to say the actual bellowing whistle of the ship the Queen Elizabeth, as it came into port in New York City. His fascination with the waterfront's possibilities also surfaces in "Tugboat Toccata," which combines location boat sounds with studio-recorded piano and percussion. Elsewhere his "Fiesta Piano Solo" is a delight of rhythmically melodic invention. Some of the composer's invented instruments are also featured. This is bold and timeless music, by turns heartfelt and cerebral.