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Daevid Allen (born Christopher David Allen, January 13th, 1938 in Melbourne, Australia) is an Australian poet, guitarist, singer, composer and performance artist best known as co-founder of the psychedelic rock bands Soft Machine (in the UK, 1966) and Gong (in France, 1970). He is sometimes credited as "Divided Alien". In 1960, inspired by the Beat Generation writers he had discovered whilst working in a Melbourne bookshop, Daevid Allen travelled to Paris where he stayed at the Beat Hotel, moving into a room that had recently been vacated by Allen Ginsberg and Peter Orlovsky. While selling the newspapers in Latin Quarter, he met Terry Riley and also gained free access to the jazz clubs in the area. After meeting up with Willaim S. Burroughs and inspired by philosophies of Sun Ra, he formed a free jazz outfit, the Daevid Allen Trio, and performed at Burroughs’ theatre pieces based on Burroughs' novel "The Ticket That Exploded".
Allen travelled to England, renting a room in Canterbury where he met his landlord’s son, 16 year old Robert Wyatt.. They formed the band Soft Machine in 1966 with Kevin Ayers and Mike Ratledge. Ayers and Wyatt had previously played in Wilde Flowers. Following a tour of Europe, Allen was refused re-entry to the UK due to overstaying his visa on a prior visit. He settled in Paris where, in May 1968, he took part in the protests which swept the city. He handed out teddy bears to the police and recited poetry in pidgin French, and now admits that he was scorned by the other protesters for being a beatnik.
Fleeing the police, he made his way to Deya, Majorca, with his partner Gilli Smyth. It was here that he recorded the first album under the name Gong, titled Magick Brother (released on BYG Actuel in 1969). They were joined by flautist and saxophonist Didier Malherbe, who they claimed to have found living in a cave on Robert Graves' estate. In 1971 Gong released Camembert Electrrique. They became somewhat of an anarchist commune in rural France between 1973 and 1974. They were joined by Steve Hillage to record the Radio Gnome Trilogy after signing with Virgin.
Allen left this incarnation of Gong and recorded two solo albums, Good Morning and Now Is the Happiest Time of Your Life. In 1977 he performed and recorded as Planet Gong and rejoined the early-70s version of the group for a one-off show at the Hippodrome in Paris. Portions of this concert (which was several hours long) was released on a double-LP entitled Gong Est Mort - Vive Gong!. In 1980 Allen teamed up with Bill Laswelll for the punk-influenced New York Gong. This effort yielded an LP called About Time. More projects followed, including Invisible Opera Company Of Tibet, Brainville, and Magic Brothers.
In 1981 Allen returned to Australia, taking up residence in Byron Bay where he worked on performance pieces and poetry. He performed with performance artist David Tolley using tape loops and drum machines. He is currently involved with a project entitled you’N’gong (a play on the phrase “Young Gong”) with his son, Orlando, and members of Acid Mothers Temple(the collaborations are performed under the name Acid Mothers Gong), as well as an improvisation outfit entitled Guru And Zero.
For many years now, Daevid Allen has been a member of the University of Errors, who have released four albums. In November 2006 a Gong Family Unconvention was held for Gong fans in Amsterdam which included a reunion of many former Gong members from the "classic" early 70s lineup. This participation was reprised in a small number of concerts held by Gong in London in June 2008, where Hillage and Giraudy were among the line up which also included Daevid Allen, Gilli Smyth, and Mike Howlett. These past years Gong has given concerts here and there with a changing line up..Then in 2009 the album 2032 appeared, produced by Hillage, with many of the old members present, the album build on the 73-74 Radio Gnome Trilogy.
Allen now lives in Byron Bay, Australia.
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With Radio Gnome Invisible Daevid Allen showed his mytholigical hand. His quest to create awareness sublimed into a trilogy.His quest to spread spiritual awareness and share the knowledge he had gained about higher states of being and communication and how to apply which hallucinegans for a positive experience. He pondered how to bring the message across and chose humor (as to profound). He chose a deliberately a silly story as a way of opening peoples heads. All this against the backdrop of anarchy.
The Story as it evolves over the trilogy involves Planet Gong, an idealised version of what earth could become, Zero (the Hero) an everyman figure whose progress we follow, and several ancilliary characters like Pot Head Pixies and Octove Docters - not forgetting Radio Gnome Invisible, a telepathic pirate radio network operating brain to brain by crystal machine transmitter direct from Planet Gong. The story is based on a vision Allen had during the full moon of Easter, 1966 in which he claims he could see his future laid out before him. It forms the central theme of the Radio Gnome Trilogy.
The story begins on the album Flying Teapot when a pig-farming Egyptologist called Mista T Being is sold a "magick ear ring" by an "antique teapot street vendor & tea label collector" called Fred the Fish. The ear ring is capable of receiving messages from the Planet Gong via a pirate radio station called Radio Gnome Invisible. Being and Fish head off to the hymnalayas of Tibet where they meet the "great beer yogi" Banana Ananda in a cave. Ananda tends to chant "Banana Nirvana Mañana" a lot and gets drunk on Foster's Australian Lager.
Flying Teapot (73 201mb)
01 - Radio Gnome Invisible
02 - Flying Teapot
03 - The Pot Head Pixies
04 - The Octave Doctors And The Crystal Machine
05 - Zero The Hero And The Witch's Spell
06 - Witch's Song, I Am Your Pussy
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The second album Angel's Egg (1973) begins with Zero falling to sleep under the influences of the potion and finding himself floating through space. After accidentally scaring a space pilot called Captain Capricorn, Zero locates the Planet Gong, and spends some time with a prostitute who introduces him to the moon goddess Selene. Zero's (drug-induced) trip to the Planet Gong continues, and the Pot Head Pixies explain to him how their flying teapots fly (a system known as Glidding). He is then taken to the One Invisible Temple of Gong.
Inside the temple, Zero is shown the Angel's Egg—the physical embodiment of the 32 Octave Doctors (descendants of the Great God Cell). The Angel's Egg is the magic-eye mandala that features on much of the band's sleeve-art. It is also a sort of recycling plant for Pot Head Pixies. A grand plan is revealed to Zero. There will be a Great Melting Feast of Freeks which Zero must organize on Earth. When everyone is enjoying the Feast, a huge global concert, the Switch Doctor will turn everybody's third eye on, ushering in a New Age on Earth. The Switch Doctor is the Earth's resident Octave Doctor, who lives near Banana Ananda's cave, in a "potheadquarters" called the Invisible Opera Company of Tibet (C.O.I.T.) and transmits all the details to the Gong Band via Bananamoon Observatory.
The lineup on this album is absolutely classic Gong and includes Tim Blake (VCS3 and mini-moog synthesizers); Pierre Moerlen (drums); Mike Howlett (bass); Daevid Allen (guitar, vocals); Didier Maherbe (woodwinds); Steve Hillage (guitar); and Gilli Smyth (space whisper, vocals). A great deal of the music on Angel's Egg is very spacey, which is driven largely by Tim Blake's atmospheric synthesizer work, along with Gilli Smyth's cosmic and heavily-echoed "space whisper".
Angels Egg (73 278mb)
07 - Other Side Of The Sky
08 - Sold To The Highest Buddha
09 - Castle In The Clouds
10 - Prostitute Poem
11 - Givin My Luv To You
12 - Selene
13 - Flute Salad
14 - Oily Way
15 - Outer Temple
16 - Inner Temple
17 - Percolations
18 - Love Is How Y Make It
19 - I Never Glid Before
20 - Eat That Phone Book Coda
21 - Ooby-Scooby Doomsday Or The D-Day Dj's Got The D.D.T. Blues
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On You (1974), Zero must first return from his trip. He asks Hiram the Master Builder how to structure his vision and build his own Invisible Temple. Having done this, Zero establishes that he must organize the Great Melting Feast of Freeks on the Isle of Everywhere, Bali.The event is going well, and the Switch Doctor switches on everyone's third eyes except for Zero's. For Zero is out the back, indulging in Earthly pleasures (fruitcake).
Zero has missed out on the whole third eye revelation experience and is forced to continue his existence spinning around on the wheel of births and deaths and slowly converging on the Angel's Egg in a way which, to a certain extent, resembles Buddhist reincarnation.
You (73 260mb)
22 - Thoughts For Naught
23 - A PHP's Advice
24 - Magick Mother Invocation
25 - Master Builder
26 - A Sprinkling Of Clouds
27 - Perfect Mystery
28 - Isle Of Everywhere
29 - You Never Blow Your Trip Forever