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Pyg!

OBI from the debut LP(OBI)
Kenji ‘Julie’ Sawada – vocals
Takayuki Inoue – guitar
Osami ‘Sally’ Kishibe - bass
Katsuo Ohno – keyboards, steel guitar
Hiroshi Oguchi – drums

Pyg was formed in 1971, as a super group, by former Tigers vocalist Kenji ‘Julie’ Sawada. Made up of Sawada and former Tigers drummer Hiroshi Oguchi, plus ex-members of Group Sounds bands The Spiders and The Tempters, Pyg was a highly commercial early ‘70s ‘pretty boy’ rock quintet. Fronted by this extravagantly preening and effeminate former Tigers frontman (sometimes described by the Japanese press as the Japanese David Bowie), and supported by the uber-heavyweight Tanabe management agency, Pyg released very commercial singles and albums to a predominantly female audience, reinforced with contemporary ‘heavy’ cover versions. Inane rock fodder at its worst, and – even at their best - barely slapping together passable renditions of the heavy hits of the day, Pyg LPs should not be touched even with a bargepole. Imagine early Deep Purple’s version of ‘Hush’ performed with a Blackpool Illuminations organ accompaniment and weak-as-shit lead vocalist, and you’re getting somewhere close. Recorded at Tokyo Colosseum on August 16th 1971, and fleshed out with a triple gatefold sleeve and free poster, Pyg’s live double-LP FREE WITH PYG was nevertheless nothing more than a teenage scream-o-thon, containing bland ‘play-by-numbers’ band compositions buoyed up by thumping Smokie-meets-Arrows versions of Randy Newman’s ‘Cowboy’, Screaming Jay Hawkins’ ‘I Put A Spell On You’, Sly’s ‘I Wanna Take You Higher’, and The Rolling Stones’ arrangement of Woody Payne’s ‘Love In Vain’, plus the Stones’ own ‘Sympathy For The Devil’. Capturing the mood of the time, they also managed Elton John’s ‘Bitch’ and ‘Country Comfort’ plus The Bee Gees’ ‘To Love Somebody’. You just don’t need this shit.

Julian Cope
Discography:
  • ORIGINAL FIRST ALBUM (Polydor, 1972)
  • FREE WITH PYG - PYG LIVE ALBUM IN COLOSSEUM (Polydor, 1972)
  • Pyg! - ORIGINAL FIRST ALBUMORIGINAL FIRST ALBUM
  • Pyg! - FREE WITH PYG - PYG LIVE ALBUM IN COLOSSEUMFREE WITH PYG - PYG LIVE ALBUM IN COLOSSEUM

Images
  • OBI from the debut LP
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