Nick Mason's Fictitious Sports (Remastered) Nick Mason

Album info

Album-Release:
1981

HRA-Release:
30.08.2018

Label: Rhino

Genre: Rock

Subgenre: Modern Rock

Album including Album cover

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  • 1Can't Get My Motor to Start03:39
  • 2I Was Wrong04:13
  • 3Siam04:48
  • 4Hot River05:16
  • 5Boo to You Too03:26
  • 6Do Ya?04:37
  • 7Wervin'03:59
  • 8I'm a Mineralist06:18
  • Total Runtime36:16

Info for Nick Mason's Fictitious Sports (Remastered)



For the first time in over 20 years: This set collects Nick Mason’s three (it says here) “solo” albums – which is quite misleading, as the first one is a rather brilliant Robert Wyatt album, and the other two are unplayable duo efforts, one of ’em never released before.

“Fictitious Sports” from 1981 was recorded in America during downtime from “The Wall”, and it features songs written by jazz pianist Carla Bley, performed by her band with Robert Wyatt on vocals, Chris Spedding on guitar, and Mr. Mason on drums. This is fantastic stuff – everyone involved is obviously delighted to be part of this. It sounds like the poppier bits of “Escalator Over The Hills” mixed with the Canterbury sound and a truly great brass section. And it’s always great to hear Robert Wyatt singing lines like “I like tickling ivories and fingering stones, when my mercury goes up I play with my bone…” (I’m A Mineralist).

“These recordings hold a very special place for me in my musical life,” Mason says of the project. Fictitious Sports developed initially from working with Mike Mantler, Carla Bley, and Robert Wyatt on a couple of their projects, and benefited enormously from a whole crew of great musicians that I was introduced to by them at Grog Kill Studios in Woodstock.”

He continues, “Profiles and White Of The Eye were an extension of working with Rick Fenn on some advertising and short documentary film soundtracks, which then developed into something more.”

“Listening back after 30 odd years, I’m delighted they are getting the reissue treatment. I’m rather hoping that sales will be sufficient to damage the market in the original rare vinyl versions!”

"...this was the most extraordinary and joyous show, a reminder of what a peculiar and brilliant band Pink Floyd were... If you have the slightest interest in Pink Floyd, do not miss this group when they return to larger venues later this year. You won't even need acid to blow your mind." (Michael Hann, Financial Times)

"The sound was immense, electrifying, galvanising, mesmerising and still deeply strange, bending the formats of primal rock into all kind of weird and wonderful shapes. From the warped garage rock opening of Interstellar Overdrive, Astronomy Dominie and Lucifer Sam to the closing proto-shoegaze blitz of One of These Days and bent musical hall wackiness of Point Me at the Sky, it was a set of such startling intensity it seemed to mock the very notion of nostalgia. It was enough to make you wonder whether rock has progressed very far at all since the Sixties." (Neil McCormick, The Daily Telegraph)

"Columbia, apparently attempting to cash in on Pink Floyd's explosion in popularity, released this album in 1981 under Nick Mason's name when in reality he's simply the drummer in this incarnation of Carla Bley's ensemble; Ms. Bley composed all the music and lyrics for this project. It's possibly her most overtly pop-oriented album, with all eight songs featuring vocals by Soft Machine alumnus Robert Wyatt. The music, by Bley's standards, is fairly pedestrian if occasionally catchy, though the lyrics are often wryly amusing. So we have songs about failed car motors and a skeptic's encounter with a flying saucer, and one dedicated to unappreciative audiences titled "Boo to You Too." Though the band is staffed with several fine jazz musicians, the music has more of a rock or jazz-rock feel, largely due to the spotlight on guitarist Chris Spedding, who evidences slick, if relatively uninteresting, chops. To the extent the songs succeed, Wyatt can take much of the credit. His engagingly hoarse voice is capable of both wrenching sincerity and mordant humor; pieces like "Do Ya?," where he is asked to tortuously squawk the line "God knows I try!," would collapse entirely with a less convincing vocalist. The closing cut, "I'm a Mineralist," is the one that leaves a lasting impression. Conflating geology and minimalism, it includes lines like "Erik Satie gets my rocks off/Cage is a dream/Philip Glass is mineralist to the extreme," before launching into a note-perfect rendition of some pointedly bland Glassian measures. For Pink Floyd completists, this album might provide a glimpse into an alternate universe of which they were otherwise unaware, but fans of Bley's earlier masterpieces like Escalator Over the Hill are likely to emerge somewhat disappointed." (Brian Olewnick, AMG)

Nick Mason, drums, percussion
Carla Bley, keyboards, songwriter, co-producer
Robert Wyatt, vocals (except on "Can't Get My Motor to Start")
Karen Kraft, lead vocal on "Can't Get My Motor to Start", duet vocal on "Hot River", backing vocals
Chris Spedding, guitars
Steve Swallow, bass
Michael Mantler, trumpets
Gary Windo, tenor, bass clarinet, flute, additional voices
Gary Valente, trombones, additional voices
Howard Johnson, tuba
Terry Adams, piano on "Boo to You Too", harmonica & clavinet on "Can't Get My Motor to Start"
Carlos Ward, additional voices
David Sharpe, additional voices
Vincent Chancey, additional voices
Earl McIntyre, additional voices

Recorded at Grog Kill Studio, Willow, New York by Michael Mantler
Mixed at Village Recorders and the Producer's Workshop, Los-Angeles, California by James Guthrie
Produced by Nick Mason and Carla Bley

Digitally Remastered by Don Meehan



Nick Mason
By the '80s, Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason had teamed with former 10cc guitarist Rick Fenn to create music production company Bamboo Music.

Fenn was a former guitarist with British art rock group 10cc. He also logged time with instrumentalist Mike Oldfield — best known for Tubular Bells, which was adopted as the chilling theme to "The Exorcist" — Abba, Rick Wakeman, and the London Symphony Orchestra. Bamboo Music produced music jingles for corporate clients like HMV, a British chain of record stores.

The duo's only album was 1985's "Profiles," produced at Britannia Row studios. A collection of typical mid-'80s synth-pop, Profiles included "Lie for a Lie," sung by Floyd's David Gilmour, which showed up on a compilation called "Heard It on the Radio, Vol. 3," released Oct. 26, 1999.

The album reached to the 154th position in the United States, fairing only slightly better than Mason's 1981 "Fictitious Sports" album, which climbed to 170.

Mason and Fenn's other collaborations were a number of film soundtracks, including: "Life Could Be a Dream" (1986), "White of the Eye" (1987), "Body Contact" (1987) and "Tank Malling" (1989).

This album contains no booklet.

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