Side 1 Side 2 1. YOU DONE MY BRAIN IN (Innes) 1.40 An Affirmation of madness. 2. KEYNSHAM (Innes) 2.20 "We" are introduced. 3. QUIET TALKS & SUMMER WALKS (Innes) 3.15 All the romance of the novel. 4. TENT (Stanshall) 2.30 A penetrating inquiry & some recreations. 5. WE WERE WRONG (Stanshall) 2.30 Nostalgic routine. Spot the deliberate fag. 6. JOKE SHOP MAN (Innes) 1.23 The Armoury of Deception. 7. THE BRIDE STRIPPED BARE BY "BACHELORS" (Stanshall/Innes) 2.35 Welcome t' Club Foot 8. LOOK AT ME, I'M WONDERFUL (Stanshall) 1.45 A warning.. 9. WHAT DO YOU DO? (Innes) 3.15 Nihilist chant before deciding, decoding, decanting, n' chanting, N' baku, disgorging, dat's gorging piglets! 10. MR. SLATER'S PARROT (Stanshall) 2.18 Own-up Time. A paradox. Homely fun. Demands for the right to live like a civilised human-bean. 11. SPORT (Stanshall) 3.20 (THE ODD BOY) Unusual flash-back. Rehearsals for the Rape of the mind. 12. I WANT TO BE WITH YOU (Innes) 2.15 Sounds reasonable. 13. NOISES FOR THE LEG (Stanshall) 2.15 Procession of the Freaks. A horrid dream. 14. "BUSTED" (Stanshall/Innes) 5.40 Finale & extravaganza. Pate & Putty. The "ballet" of the streets & an astounding wind-up. The End.
THE LINER NOTES
By Prof. Harvey J. Satan
WELCOME TO KEYNSHAM!
Population: 6 Bonzo's, their instruments, their songs, and YOU.
[ Whereas most people are NOT aloud to talk about "Keynsham"....I knew the right palms to cross with silver....and can henceforth reveal as much as I was aloud to be told by the locals.....at least until the full moon comes out. ]
Now read on....
SIDE ONE: Our journey begins with the cryptical warning, "I have personally won over....". This personal overthrow seems to have been achieved with the help of heavy machinery! Have androids taken over Keynsham? The first song, "You Done my Brain In", is all Neil, and a rocking good song about the alienation of relationships. Our singer loves the object of his affections so much, he can't even bare to be near her! We are then given our first warning about NOT mentioning the secrets of "Keynsham". And then we are given the very psychedelic song of "Keynsham" which weaves intricate word plays into lyrics, not unlike John Lennon's works, but tells us precious little about "Keynsham". This is followed by the very gentle, "Quiet Talks & Summer Walks", a song about the world seen through the eyes of a flower...yes, in "Keynsham" even the flowers are watching! Next the local dentists seems to be extracting not only teeth, but information as well! We are then treated to the wonderfully looney and loud, "Tent"! "Tent", I believe has always been a fan favourite just because it is so obnoxious in it's intentions and lyrics, and Vivian's vocals! ( He is very much loving singing this song! ).Next is, "We Were Wrong", a hilarious duet, with a lyric exchange between a couple....the twist here is, the couple is "Legs" Larry Smith & Vivian Stanshall. This song has a sort of 50's sound to it, and a great Neil duet on piano & organ. We then run into, "Joke Shop Man", a bit of a creepy song. It sings the virtues of the items a novelty shop sells, and then ends with a sort of haunting mantra of sound, that seems to indicate all of the Joke Shop's wares are suddenly marching on the city! "Bride Stripped Bare By "Bachelors", the next track in your song book, is a look at The Bonzo's themselves, as they arrive in "Keynsham" and receive a less than warm welcome. This may be the only song in which all the Bonzo's sing a solo line. We round out this side with, Look At Me I'm Wonderful", another coupling of "Legs" Larry Smith and Vivian Stanshall. This time it's a delightful poke at smarmy showbiz singers. ( And we fade out to the sounds of more machinery.....was the singer a machine trying to be a human? )
SIDE TWO: Our flip side starts off with the gently inquisitive, "What Do You Do?", Neil's look on the drudgeries of daily life. We are then treated to a really bad pun, followed by: "Mr. Slater's Parrot". This song is a delightful throwback to the early Bonzo sound, you can almost picture them all running about the stage squawking like parrots. Next, with the help of some simple hypnosis, we are reminded of our youth via, "Sport ( The Odd Boy )". This song is unique in it's change in styles,it starts off as baroque with the harpsichord, then becomes medieval with the recorder and drum, and then progresses into a rocking jam for bass and bells! Also amusing is the lyrical commentary that boys whom do not indulge in sport, are basically useless to society. Neil then indulges us in a rock ballad, "I Want To Be With You". ( You might almost think of this as his first song for Yvonne, his wife.). But all is not hearts and flowers, we soon learn that the local military have become werewolves! And to accompany this revelation, we are given "Noises For The Leg", an eerie horror film instrumental, featuring Roger Ruskin Spear on the theremin. Closing out our trip to "Keynsham", is the show stopping, "Busted", a commentary on Youth, Alienation, and The Police....it's actually more comical than it sounds. And as the song fades out, we hear our train taking us out of "Keynsham", and on to pastures new.
Afterward: It's hard to say if this album was ever meant to be a fully realized "concept" album or if it was altered in the final stages and quickly cobbled together. The complete "story", as read in the gatefold sleeve of the album seems to suggest this album was originally going to be both songs and words, rather than songs and bits of chat. The album works in it's final form, the spoken bits seem to add more mystique to it all, but one wonders how the fully completed narration would've sounded? ( Of course, if you are sitting around with friends, you could all get together and act it out for yourself! )
The score so far: At this point "Do Not Adjust Your Set" was over. The Bonzo's had done extensive touring, with bands like "Cream", "The Who", and the up and coming "Led Zepplin". The toils of touring were beginning to take their toll, and the differences in music styles between band members was also becoming a strain. ( How does one hold together a band who's members want to play "Trad. Jazz", "Rock" and "Avant Garde" ? ) This album was a good mix of styles, but it was becoming harder to accommodate all in the band. Not to mention the comings and goings of some band members, making it difficult to keep track of who wanted to still be a Bonzo!
EPILOGUE: As the lads exited the serene, yet slightly terrifying confines of this land known as "Keynsham", they found themselves at a true fork in the road. Three roads to take, three choices to make. The signs up ahead read thusly: "The Brain Opera", "The Break Up", and "The Contractual Obligation". Which would they choose? In true Bonzo form, it would be ALL three! ( More on that below and in our next episode, titled: "Let's Make Up And Be Friendly" )