Monday, September 8, 2008

Crocheted Doughnut Ring/Doughnut Ring Singles


Thanks again to the It's Psych Forum, I give you a collection of singles from a band known as the Crocheted Doughnut Ring and apparently just the Doughnut Ring at some other point. I'm having trouble finding much information on them, so drop a comment if you can fill me in. A range of sounds can be heard throughout these eight tracks, including some perfectly crafted psych-pop, minimal-far-out-sound-
collage-type-shit, good old rock 'n' roll, a tune with some hispanic flavor and a "cool island song" (to melt your icy heart). The collection starts off with "Havana Anna" which is the cool island song I speak of. It's a catchy tune that has yet to grow old for me... definitely one of my favorites. Another stand out song is the ballad "Maxine's Parlour," although the highlight of the collection is the Crocheted Doughnut Ring's last two tracks. "Nice" is the sound collage, which is a pretty shocking listen considering it was created by a late 60s band with obvious ambitions to write pop songs. Although I'm pretty unfamiliar with musique concrète, I suspect it was heavily influenced by it as well as early electronic music. Modern lo-fi indie bands that get off on occasional experimental sound wish they could make this shit. Just when you think this band couldn't get any sweeter, "Nice" segues into "Two Little Ladies (Azalea & Rhododendron)." Packed with catchy melodies, tinkering harpsichord, swirling psychedelic effects, and frequent shifts in tempo, "Two Little Ladies (Azalea & Rhododendron)" epitomizes 60s psych-pop. I find the song very reminiscent of the Idle Race's debut album Birthday Party, which is no small compliment. The two Doughnut Ring tracks don't excite me quite as much, but I still get dibs on sampling the first eight seconds of "Dance Around Julie." In case you were wondering, that's not the real artwork.

Update: Check the comments of this post for some detailed information about the Crocheted Doughnut Ring/Dougnut Ring.

64 comments:

Sadie said...

The Crochet Doghnut Ring came out from the ashes of Force Five and The Fingers - two groups managed by the great british producer Peter Eden - who assembled a new group and christened them 'Crochet Doghnut Ring' after a Peter Blake pop-art collage and pseudonymously wrote their debut single 'Two little ladies'.
They came together in the summer of '67, and initially contained former Fingers frontman Richard Mills (guitar, vocals), George Bird (bass), John Chapel (keyboards) and two ex-Force Five stalwarts Bert Pulham (lead guitar) and Dave Skates (drums).
'Two little ladies' was licensed to Polydor who, in their determination to rush-release the track, neglected to sign the group to any contract. Lacking a B-side, Peter took the backing track, experimented with voguish production techniques like phasing and croosfading, and came up with 'Nice', which he then presented to Polydor as the record's B-side. The label duly released the single in October 1967, only for the pirates to flip the record and play 'Nice' instead (apparently John Peel also wanted to play it but was told it was "too far out" to play on the newly-formed Radio One).
Following the release of 'Two Little Ladies', Peter went to work for Decca's satellite label, Deram. Over the next twelve months the Crocheted Doghnut Rings issued three singles for Deram (the last as Doghnut Ring)- all three were ignored in England but did well on the continent, with 'Happy Castle' becoming a minor hit in Japan (a local cover version reached the No. 2 position, incidentally).
The Doghnut Ring fell apart in early 1969, giving way to the offshoot band RIVER - Richard Mills (guitar/vocals) and George Bird (bass), plus local musicians Alan Gray (guitar) and Charlie Mumford (drums). Presumably in an effort to capitalise on the Ring's success in Holland, River cut a strong pop rock version of the Shocking Blue album track 'California Here I Come'. However, Decca turned the track down, and the group fell apart almost before they'd formed.


(by David Wells, July 1999 - from 'Nice - an anthology of Peter Eden Production - Tenth Planet)

Doug said...

Wow. Thanks for the information.

Anonymous said...

where can i download this?

Doug said...

You can download it from DivShare by clicking on the DivShare logo. The link will take you to a page and you can click "Download Original" of whatever song is selected.

kerry said...

Hi, David Scates the drummer from this band would have been my father-in-law if he was still alive today, I married his son Clayton. I was wonreing if you had any photos of the band and if so could you possibly email me them, it would be very appriciated if you do have any that you could send, thankyou Kerry Scates

Brenda said...

Hi may name is Brenda. I am Dave Scates sister. Our mum was the late Iris Harris. Iris was married to brother Dave dad Frank Scates. We also have a sister Vera who past away in 1988, a sister Betty who past away in 1996, another brother Frankie and a brother John. I have lots of pictures and syories of the life of brother Dave. I met I met Dave's wife Lynn while I was on holiday in Canvey Island.

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Julie said...

I am the cousin of John Chappell (keyboards) and was 7 years old when Dance Around Julie was released. I was told it was written about me as I was always dancing around the room when I visited John and his family. I would dearly like to get hold of the lyrics to the song but can't seem to find them anywhere. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Anonymous said...

Hi, Charlie Mumford here. When "The River" formed after the demise of the Crocheted Douhgnut Ring we did cut a demo for Decca and I remember the session well. Very sorry to read about Dave Scate`s by the way. George Bird is still playing in bands, I believe. Still see Peter Eden from time to time. Incidentally, " The River" lasted for a pretty respectful eighteen months I seem to recall and playing four or five nights a week in various clubs and dance halls. Great days!

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