The Scratch Orchestra ‎– London, 1969

Die Stadt ‎– DS23
Vinyl, 10", Limited Edition


A Untitled
B Untitled


There are three editions totaling 900 copies:
First edition of 500 on black vinyl (in picture sleeve)
Second edition of 100 on clear vinyl (in clear plastic sleeve)
Third edition of 300 (in plain black cover with center hole)

Two recordings made during the first public performance by the Scratch Orchestra. The concert took place on the 1st of November 1969, at Hampstead Town Hall, London



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May 14, 2009
What initially grabbed my interest for this release was the Cardew and AMM connection. However, none of the musicians are credited on the release and it contains no liner notes about the particular performance. It is believed that this meeting was mostly composed of students from Cardew's own musical classes at Morley College in London, and other musicians who answered an advertisement placed in "The Musical Times" magazine. Unfortunately, I believe the democratic leanings of the group are what makes this a poor release, as well as the incredibly poor clarity of the recording. I felt as if I was listening to this performance through the wall of an adjoining room.

Side A is dominated by muffled horn players and a voice musician who mostly hollers and shouts. Occasionally another musician will poke through but not to any great significance.

Side B is slightly more interesting in my opinion. It consists of radio broadcasts played in succession for a couple of minutes each. There is no radio interplay or collage if you will. It really is just a broadcast playing for a couple of minutes and then a subtle switch into another.

I had high hopes for this release, but was greatly disappointed. I am sure not everyone does or would dislike this release as much as myself, but I feel the only significance of the release is that it is one of only two official releases to document this collective group project led by Cardew.