Intergalactic Touring Band ‎– Intergalactic Touring Band (1977)

Intergalactic Touring Band is a 1977 sci-fi concept album produced by Marty Scott and Stephan Galfas for Passport Records. The songs are alternately credited to Danny Beckerman and Wil Malone and performed by variable casts of English and American musicians and vocalists, including Rod Argent (Argent), Dave Cousins (Strawbs), Annie Haslam (Renaissance), Arthur Brown, Meat Loaf, and Ben E. King.

 

Tracklist:
A1. “Approach (Overture)” (2:41)
A2. “Silver Lady” (4:25)
A3. “Universal Zoo / Why?” (4:55)
A4. “Starship Jingle” (3:25)
A5. “Heartbreaker” (3:59)
A6. “Reaching Out” (4:08)
B1. “First Landing” (3:18)
B2. “Space Commando” (4:03)
B3. “Robot Saleman” (4:43)
B4. “Love Station” (2:54)
B5. “A Planet Called Monday / Epilogue” (4:34)
B6. “Keeper Keep Us” (3:46)

Fictional Band:
Hope Larson — Lase Keyboard Panel
Ixol Phaane — Computerized Keyboard Synthesis
Justice Conrad — Globe Lase Base
Krys — Holographic Percussion
Raif Reed — Lase Guitar

Credits:

Approach (Overture)
  • Members of the London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Harry Rabinowitz
  • Orchestral arrangement by Wil Malone
  • Synthesizers and Mellotron: Larry Fast
Silver Lady
  • Lead vocal: Rod Argent
  • Acoustic and electric guitars: David Scance
  • Fender bass: Peter Sobel
  • Keyboards: Brian Cuomo
  • Drums and percussion: Paul Marchetti
  • Synthesizers, Mellotron and vocoder: Larry Fast
  • Effect vocal: Irene Conrad
  • Silver Lady vocal: Marge Raymond
  • Group vocals: Joel Krantz, Frank D’Agostino, Shelley Thompson, David Scance, Marty Scott, Peter Sobel
  • Orchestral arrangement: Wil Malone and Stephan Galfas
Universal Zoo/Why
  • Lead vocal, “Universal Zoo”: Arthur Brown
  • Lead vocal, “Why”: Joel Krantz
  • Electric guitars: David Scance
  • Fender bass: Peter Sobel
  • Fretless Bass on “Why”: Percy Jones
  • Keyboards: Brian Cuomo
  • Drums and percussion: Paul Marchetti
  • Primitive percussion: Paul Marchetti, Marty Scott, Peter Sobel
  • Synthesizers and vocoder: Larry Fast
  • Group vocals: Joel Krantz, Frank D’Agostino, Shelley Thompson
  • Additional vocals: Marty Scott, Peter Sobel, Bill Guerra
  • Orchestral arrangement: Danny Beckerman
  • Effects vocal: “The Boss”
Starship Jingle
  • Lead vocal: Peppi Marchello (misspelled Pepe in album credits)
  • Electric and acoustic guitars: David Scance
  • Electric Autoharp: Marty Scott
  • Fender bass: Peter Sobel
  • Keyboards: Brian Cuomo
  • Drums and percussion: Paul Marchetti
  • Synthesizers: Larry Fast
  • Flutes: John Zangrando
  • Group vocals: Joel Krantz, Frank D’Agostino, Shelley Thompson
  • Prepared effects: Larry Fast, Marty Scott, Peter Sobel
  • Orchestral arrangement: Wil Malone, Stephan Galfas
Heartbreaker
  • Lead vocal: Dave Cousins
  • Electric and acoustic guitars: David Scance
  • Bass guitar: Peter Sobel
  • Keyboards: Brian Cuomo
  • Drums and percussion: Paul Marchetti
  • Synthesizers: Larry Fast
  • Flutes: John Zangrando
  • Group vocals: Joel Krantz, Frank D’Agostino, Shelley Thompson
  • Orchestral arrangement: David Bedford, Stephan Galfas
Reaching Out
  • Lead vocal: Annie Haslam
  • Members of the London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Harry Rabinowitz
  • Orchestral arrangement by Wil Malone
  • Acoustic guitars: Anthony Phillips and Peter Sobel
  • Drums and percussion: Paul Marchetti
  • Tympani: Mighty Young Joe Intile, B. E.
First Landing
  • Lead vocal: Steve Barth
  • Electric and acoustic guitars: David Scance
  • Bass guitar: Frank Prescod and Peter Sobel
  • Keyboards: Brian Cuomo
  • Drums and percussion: Paul Marchetti
  • Additional percussion: Mighty Young Joe Intile, B. E.
  • Synthesizers: Larry Fast
  • Orchestral arrangement: Wil Malone and Danny Beckerman
  • Group vocals: Joel Krantz, Frank D’Agostino, Shelley Thompson
  • Additional vocals: The Passport Munchkins
Space Commando
  • Lead vocal: Mr. Snips
  • Electric and acoustic guitars: David Scance
  • Bass guitar: Peter Sobel
  • Keyboards: Brian Cuomo
  • Drums and percussion: Paul Marchetti
  • Additional percussion: Marty Scott
  • Synthesizers: Larry Fast
  • Orchestral arrangement: David Bedford and Stephan Galfas
  • Group vocals: Joel Krantz, Frank D’Agostino, Shelley Thompson
Robot Salesman
  • Lead vocal: Jim Cuomo
  • Electric and acoustic guitars: David Scance
  • Electric guitar: Ryche Chlanda
  • Acoustic guitar: Peter Sobel
  • Bass guitar: Frank Prescod
  • Drums and percussion: Paul Marchetti
  • Synthesizers, Mellotron and vocoder: Larry Fast
  • Orchestral arrangement: Stephan Galfas and Brian Cuomo
Love Station
  • Lead vocal: Ben E. King
  • Electric guitars: John Tropea
  • Bass guitar: Frank Prescod
  • Keyboards: Brian Cuomo
  • Drums and percussion: Paul Marchetti
  • Additional percussion: Peter Sobel
  • Synthesizers: Larry Fast
  • Saxophone solo: Clarence Clemons
  • Guitar solo: John Tropea
  • Orchestral arrangement: David Bedford, Stephan Galfas and Brian Cuomo
  • Background vocals: Janice Pendarvis and Friends
A Planet Called Monday/Epilogue
  • Lead vocal, “A Planet Called Monday”: Francis Rossi and Rick Parfitt
  • Lead vocal, “Epilogue”: Jeffrey Leynor
  • Drums and percussion: Paul Marchetti
  • Synthesizers: Larry Fast
  • Group vocals: Joel Krantz, Frank D’Agostino, Shelley Thompson, David Scance
  • Orchestral arrangement: Danny Beckerman
  • Electric guitars: David Scance
  • Bass guitar: Peter Sobel
  • Keyboards: Brian Cuomo
Keeper Keep Us
  • Lead vocal: Meat Loaf
  • Electric and acoustic guitars: David Scance
  • Acoustic and bass guitars: Peter Sobel
  • Fretless bass: Percy Jones
  • Keyboards: Brian Cuomo
  • Drums and percussion: Paul Marchetti
  • Synthesizers: Larry Fast
  • Group vocals: Joel Krantz, Frank D’Agostino, Shelley Thompson
  • Orchestral arrangement: Wil Malone

So with this song, its part of a trio that was in the centre of this album, which talked about the first colonization attempts of the new galaxy and how many never made it. The first song in the trio is First Landing which talked about the first successful colony ship to reach the new galaxy and settle on New Earth. Then comes Heartbreaker, done by Dave Cousins of the Strawbs. His song talks about one of the other lost colony ships whose communications systems broke and they were never heard from again, but there are stories told that suggest it ended up drifting around some distant star for the rest of time as a coffin of Bodies now silver. Finally we have Reaching Out, Ms. Haslam’s song. She’s singing a song from the perspective of one of the other lost colony ships that never made it, talking about how their navigation systems went kaput so they’re now stuck drifting away like the ship in Heartbreaker. Its from the perspective of presumably the captain of that ship saying goodbye, because she knows they’re doomed… They miss earth and know they’ll never get back, nor reach their destination… They’ve been gone for so long, ten generations, but now they’re done for, and their attempt was futile… All the hopeful people on that ship, their families, many of whom have only heard legends passed from generation to generation of earth, will die in the place they were born, on that ship. Its actually a super depressing song when you know the story behind it!

Another thing to note is that all the songs are being performed during a concert. This was going to be made into a film (until Star Wars happened), and it starts with the Approach Overture and Silver Lady which feature the band getting ready for the last show on their ten year tour, a tour that took them across the new galaxy to unite the peoples, and act as a peace bringer between the natives and the new ish human colonists. Then it goes into The Universal Zoo as the concert begins, and every song after that is being performed during this concert – Reaching Out is a song performed by whatever character in the band Annie would have played. They only ever got as far as naming the main instrumentalists, most of whom are human but one is a Violian, a native to the planet Viola.

Anyway, yeah, so this is a song they wrote based on the stories of the lost colony ships. The concert tells the story of the colonization of the new galaxy and how they’ve learnt to get along with each other, how they’ve developed since (through the Vibra Corporation who have developed many new pieces of technology like the personal robots who may or may not have ended up turning against the humans…) And through war times, like in the song Space Commando. It features an intermission with Romeo Jones, the DJ of the Love Station, visiting the Audience and advertising the station. After that, it also features a few more curious songs such as A Planet called Monday, which tells the story of how the IGTB reacted when they had first come to Monday, and found out that, because the planet had no star, the people, at the end of their life, would begin walking up a very long staircase up to the upper atmosphere, and thus would burn their bodies so the planet could be warm and bright. If I remember correctly, Monday is one of their first stops on the tour and the last stop, a bookend location. At the very end, Meat Loaf sings a song about The Keeper who is essentially God, and they all come together to thank The Keeper for keeping them safe and whatnot. That’s the end of the concert and the album. So several times its about various stories or locations with the colonization, others its about the band’s journeys themselves.

A really curious album indeed, I’ve done my work on hopefully someday bringing it back. I’d love to make it into the film it was meant to be.


Sources:

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1 thought on “Intergalactic Touring Band ‎– Intergalactic Touring Band (1977)

  1. Haslam’s “Reaching Out” is one of her finest moments on record. More Renaissance fans need to hear this.

    Cousins’ “Heartbreaker” is another standout. One of the best Strawbs songs that the Strawbs didn’t actually record (despite the Lambert-penned song of the same name on Burning for You, released the same year) and that many Straws fans, sadly, haven’t heard.

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