4.4 - I was initially turned off by the vocals that struggle to keep in tune with a rather complex melody on "Sea Song." Aptly named, that song floats on a sea of sound that seems to envelope and immerse you in a strange and delightful soundscape reminiscent of "Kid A." In fact, so many sounds seem to directly inform "Kid A" that Thom Yorke could well be accused of ripping it off. There's the riot of woodwinds on "Little Red Riding..." that's reminiscent of "National Anthem" and then there's "Alifib" whose garbled vocals bring to mind "Everything In Its Right Place." Wow, as I'm writing all this, my esteem for this record just keeps rising. Then there are the moments of spoken word, especially on the final track, that add so much atmosphere. And let's not forget the backstory! Yeah, this one's a trip. I'll come back to this.
This is something I could sink into. First listen of Robert Wyatt. No possible way to digest it all in the first listen. My favorite kind of music. Sounds ahead of its time.
I only listened to it once, and to be honest I’ve no idea what was going on. He’s to listen to in parts but some really enjoyable aspects to it to. I didn’t hate it, and I’m going to go back and give it a bit more time so I guess that’s a (generous/benefit of the doubt) 3/5 in my book.
Another experimental one. Nothing here that I like at all
This is simply wonderful - probably my favorite discovery from this list so far. I found this much more accessible than your average prog. The whole thing sounds like a dream, both the instruments and the vocals. I could get lost in this album... Fave track - "Sea Song", but really this album demands to be listened to straight through...
Obviously this isn't going to be everyone's cup of tea, and honestly I can see why this is hardly anyone's cup of tea, but goddamn I have to stick up for Robert Wyatt. First of all, the fact that he became paralyzed while in the middle of making this record, and that he then carried on to complete it and continue his music career, is nothing short of miraculous. I have always found his music both haunting and comforting, particularly his voice, but if you listen to this album through the lens of what he was going through at the time, this album takes on a whole new depth and dimension. Yes, this album is challenging, but to be the cathartic, soul searching record that it is, it has to be challenging. If you have an immediate negative reaction to this album, I get it, feel free to move on. But if you find yourself not quite sure how to feel about it, give it another spin. I promise you it becomes more rewarding with repeated listens (particularly on a good pair of headphones at night).
Unlistenable! British art house nonsense for the sake of itself.
It was shit
Horrendous. Experimental hippie jazz.
Absolute rock bottom
this album sucks holy shit
The interpretive dance equivalent of music
WTF. this is one of the more unlistenable things we've come across. the jabberwocky lyrical content (i can't tell if they are lyrics or backward masked sounds most of the time), and the whole thing is psychedulic, dissonant mumbo jumbo.
Possibly the worst yet. Deserves a 0/5.
God awful noise
Wanker music. Example of some of the egregiously self-indulgent pap produced during that time.
OMG. That voice. Perfectly named album: "Rock Bottom". Horrible album in every way. Rather listen to Yoko screaming. F
Like a folk David Bowie. Awesome
Das ist mal wieder der Grund, warum diese Liste auch Spaß machen kann. Fast mehr Kunst als „nur“ Musik zieht Wyatt uns hinab in einen Wahnsinn, in dessen Zentrum alle Instrumente aufhören zu spielen und stattdessen anfangen zu singen. Eric Chenaux hat sicher mehr als nur eine Prise des zerstoßenen „Rock Bottoms“ in sein Gesamtwerk eingeknetet. Völlig faszinierte 4.5
One of the most beautiful sounding albums ever. It is very typical English art rock, and I always thought of it as The Hounds of Love of the 70s. It has quite a reputation, and for sure, Radiohead fans will like it. In short: a great album, 5 stars easily.
I had never heard of Robert Wyatt but as I listened to “Sea Song” I was very intrigued and engaged at this truly unique and very odd love song. I stared at the cover of the album as I listened and felt myself drifting into its world. Do I love this song…? I think I do… “A Last Straw” meandered about and I felt myself drifting like a krill in a giant ocean as the music pushed me this way and that through its currents. It was strangely wonderful. I could live here. Midway through “Little Red Riding Hood Hits the Road” I realized the singing was backwards. I had to reference the lyrics to realize he was unsinging the lyrics from the first half of the song. I would have thought it was some musical joke but I found it strangely satisfying. The horns in this song are wonderful and there is an excitement with really lovely piano and a driving beat. “Alifib” has more of that drifting-along-in-the-sea vibe that I really am loving. The inscrutable lyrics sound almost like a prayer amidst the shifting currents of the song. Wonderful. “Alife” continues in a similar way, but becomes more frenetic as it advances until the kind of wild saxophone bellowing away at the end. The chant at the end is really odd and I am not sure what it all means, but I really liked the drama. “Little Red Robin Hood Hits the Road” then closes the album in a really perfect way. It is dramatic and cacophonous through its first have, then settles down with some quietly droning strings and a strange monotonal chant. A somewhat maniacal laugh closes the album. Wow! This is really surprising to me that it was created in 1974… it sounds more in line with Radiohead or Thom Yorke’s solo stuff. I had no idea that something like this existed 40 years ago to serve as such a unique source of inspiration. I love hitting ROCK BOTTOM with Robert Wyatt. The swirling sounds took me into a watery world in a way that was a true surprise. I connected to the stark and solitary world it creates and will happily return there again soon.
This was the perfect listen at the perfect time. Why wouldn't someone sing backwards during my stay at The Great Northern Hotel from Twin Peaks? Will I ever want to listen again? Who knows. But it will remain a special memory forever.
very good sound, quirky and interesting!
Solid. Solid Vocals and instrumentation. Liked it a lot.
Занимательный арт-рок. Первый альбом Роберта Уайатта после несчастного случая.
Well this was wild. Really cool experience. I should check this out again at some point.
I don't usually listen to art rock, so I was not sure I would enjoy this album. But actually, most of it is very solid, though it gets a bit boring in the middle.
poetic and weird i kinda like it like if the beatles did too many drugs.
While preparing to record the album, the drunken Wyatt fell from a third-floor window and was paralysed from the waist down. Nevertheless, Wyatt made Rock Bottom one of the first known rock records recorded by an artist in a wheelchair. (8/10) FT: Sea Song
Probably the most enjoyable jazzy/proggy album we have had on this list, although that's a very low bar. I can definitely hear some echos of this in Radiohead and God Speed! You Black Emperor.
This got pretty adventurous. Kind of like a folky/prog sound. Interesting.
Really enjoyed this. It has a rhythmic bouncy folky feel for a prog rock album. So much better than angry shredding rock nonsense.
This is so weird and artsy I love it. The instrumentation is prog-y and orchestral, it sounds amazing.
Well, what is this? - "Experimental jazz meets psychedelic pop" with a strong emphasis on "psychedelic". "Alife" even resembles Jean Michel Jarres Ethnicolor from the Zoolook album, even though it's and entierely different genre. I found it strangely difficult to fast forward or skip tracks. The whole album is very trippy, in a good way. This is far from my usual tastes, but I'll give this 3.5/5.
Incredible story behind this album. The songs are definitely a bit eclectic, but they are relaxing and enjoyable to listen to. Very creative
An expansive and unusual album. The beginning is rather dirgelike before taking off into a horn filled modal jazz like middle section. This album is tinged with pastoral British folk passages undergirded by experimental lyrics and instrumentation. It’s honestly rather brilliant.
Trippy, good background though
The very few pages of Finnegan's Wake I've read come to mind, I'm sure because of the water.
Psychedelic, really weird.
Nice parts but got weird as hell at some parts
Gott, was ist DAS denn jetzt schon wieder? Nach 4 Minuten habe ich mir die Frage gestellt, ob das absichtlich komisch sein soll. Wird besser. Little Red Riding Hood Hit the Road ist ein gutes Stück. Man muss allerdings was genommen haben, um auf Alifib und Alife zu kommen. Leider ist er nicht rechtzeitig davon runtergekommen, um die beiden Stücke wegzulassen.
On the fence with this. Fully original and a great deal of individual vision (some reminding me a of Chris Knox) but the execution a little scattershot.
Pretty sick. Sort of King Crimson-y. Super psychadelic, a little jazzy, very progressive, but more chill/ambient than heavy rock and also a healthy dash of creepiness.
Intriguing. Art rock ain’t my thing, but this guy’s story is amazing.
Pretty interesting. 6/10
I liked this album's artsy, atmospheric instrumentation and maybe could have given it a 4 for that alone if it weren't for the vocals being so irritatingly distracting.
Dreamy and psych, but requires the correct state/day/attitude
David Bowie con folk
Interesting album. Probably not something I will put on again, but it's good.
Weird experience. Not that I really care for it, but it has it's moments, such as the end of Little Red Robin Hood Hit The Road
Unique instrumentation, cool little album. Would have preferred a bit more change in singing style over the album
Wired and wonderful at times with some exquisite cameos. Studious returns for further listening may discover more.
i feel too dumb to enjoy this
Discordant and strangely melancholic.
Had it on as background music but there was some freaky shit going on. It's AHRT ROCK man. Pretty amazing in the context of him becoming a paraplegic before writing/ recording.
Nice, but despite my sensitivity to the genre it failed to rock my foundations.
Some interesting sounds, like a proto-Radiohead at their most experimental or even a bit of a Pink Floyd or Bowie vibe some jazz elements in that the structure is just not there especially in the piano playing. Seems less polished though, it's a rawer sound than those other bands. Not sure that I like it but it's definitely unique and I think worth a listen. Alife is straight up hard to listen to.
I didn't know what to expect from this at all. Oddly hypnotic and captivating.
Interesting I suppose. Had it on in the background...probably deserves a closer listen.
Disc complexe i difícil, que es una mica dur de sentir. Es pot percebre la seva qualitat i els temes són d'una densitat que no embruta la intensitat en la composició i execució de Wyatt. Un d'aquells famosos "clàssics per descobrir" que jo acceptaria (en la seva suposada magnitud) només en part
Comfortably the best attempt at music I've heard this hour. It felt like how giving an Eskimo kiss to a baboon's anus after a curry feels.
Not my taste. Appreciate it as a unique piece of art.
Psychedelic sounds! I like it!!!
Great production and mixing, sounds really smooth and perfect. But the actual style of music, a mix of ambience and psychedelia simply did not wow me in any way. The songs are too similar and lack direction.
This is very weird music! not quite right for the morning commuite, maybe better suited to being slumped in a chair with a dram. I enjoyed lostening to this, found it quite trippy and very original.
Instrumentally it's interesting but vocally, oof not my thing. Initially this is a 2 for the grating high pitched vocals but then I read up on the album and now I feel kinda bad since he became paraplegic during this album. However it seems this was still the same vocal style regardless of the accident from his previous works, maybe it became a bit more strained. The vocals unfortunately do not make me want to listen to it though. A 3 since it is trying something different.
Listening to this is like getting stuck in a fever dream - which makes sense knowing that it was created in the wake of an injury that left him paraplegic. The experience of listening to it was not enjoyable for me.
Первая песня напомнила Боуи. Да и остальные - довольно занятный эксперимент. Достойно ознакомления.
I liked it a lot and will definitely revisit. Reminded me of Mike Oldfield.
I've always thought Robert Wyatt was a bit of an odd duck, with his high-pitch, off-key delivery and his gloomy songs. But, learning that he was a paraplegic when he recorded this adds another perspective. The first song is lovely. The rest is listenable but I'm not a fan when the songs develop into more Avant Gard pieces. Still, you have to tip your hat to those who created and financed something this uncommercial. I read a quote by a Soft Machine guy saying that they voted out guitars early on, and RW seems to have followed that directive for the most part, but the solo by Mike Oldfield is instantly recognizable.
kind of spacey, experimental, jazzy. It's alright I guess.
Art (/prog?) rock rootz
A bit weird
meh, im not seeing it
Sounds like a poor impression of Bowie
A fisherman's point of view what Prog Rock should sound like. Pretty wealth compared to other realeses in 1974.
Well this is some weirdness. Cant say I liked it, disliked at times even.
Such an esoteric, cerebral album. Not bad.
Strange. Probably pretty good but I don’t have the energy for a second listen
Not sure why but I just didn't enjoy this.
Was something I would've never come across but I don't feel I'd have missed out either. 2*
Ouvi uma vez e nem lembro mais o que achei. A radio que comecou a tocar depois foi bem interessante
Not my kind of album, although did apprecaite it in parts. Not sure on the vocals
songs are too long. i didnt like this one very much, the songs were so weird and trippy. it felt like there was no direction to it whatsoever. WAY WAY WAY too long and theres no point to it. but it wasnt bad 4/10
Music sounded interesting, but hard to focus on with the grating vocals taking over. It's wierd, and not in a good way for me
No thank you, could not make it through half the songs.
New artist, new music. I'm not sure how to even classify this album. The music shuffled between a mild "okay" and "¿whuh?" Saxophone squonks and back-masked lyrics. If I had to label this, I would call it a "nope".
Some of the sounds are nice, but it was too subversive to me. Probably will have to listen to it again and try to wrap my brain around it-but for now I didn’t really dig it.
Rock Bottom makes me feel like I am floating in an undeep puddle. Heavily layered soundscapes and Robert's scratchy and snoopyesque vocals create what is at times engaging jazz-rock, and other times confusingly awful melodies. It's not something I enjoy, or like, but that I almost appreciate for it's artistic merit. 2/5.
Not really my thing. There's some great instrumentation and production work on this album, but unfortunately the vocals just get on my nerves for most of the songs. It seems like a really emotional record that is layered in a unique way, certainly unlike anything I've heard before, but it just couldn't peak my interest enough to be invested. If you can get past whiney and repetitive vocal parts, this could be a great record for any listener. It certainly seems like a precursor for bands like Radiohead, My Morning Jacket, and other art/experimental rock bands. Favorite Song: Little Red Riding Hood Hit The Road Least Favorite: Alife
I can see how it is influential, but I find it unlistenable
Almost instrumental type of music experimental for the time.
You sound different from other albums You come from the foam-crested mind
Interesting, but I didn’t particularly enjoy it.
It started well with a track that had a real Bowie-esque feel to it (Sea Song). But the rest of it was just a little too hit and miss to reach my criteria for a 3. I wouldn't listen to it again, but I wouldn't be screaming "Make it stop!!!"
Not awesome of something I must hear before I die.
Not really for me
Ich liebe z.B. Talk Talk viel zu sehr, und habe außerdem Kate Bush schon viel zu gut (und voll berechtigt) mit Punkten versorgt um das hier leichtfertig als mir zu artsy abzutun. Andererseits aber auch Sufjan Stevens die wenigen Punkte gegeben, die halt dafür von mir nur drin waren. Hach, un nu? Sehr kunstfertig natürlich, das hier. Bräuchte aber vermutlich mehr Anläufe als mein aktueller Zeitplan gewähren möchte. Leider deshalb nur: 2.4
Awangardowosc i progresywnosc tego albumu uciekly daleko poza skale w ktorej sie obracalem, wiec po odsluchu jestem calkowicie zbambozlowany co tak wlasciwie uslyszalem, a jest czego sluchac, bo sporo artystow sie przewija przez plyte i obok instrumentow typowo rokowych mozna uslyszec takze skrzypce, klarnety, czy nawet bardziej egzotycznie koncertyne, czyli jakby mini harmonie reczna z klawiszami pod obiema lapami, pierwszy raz widze takie cuda, ale lista instrumentow jest jeszcze dziwniejsza, bo mozna tam znalezc lampki wina czy podstawki tego samego producenta, z ktorych pan Wyatt stara sie wydobyc dzwieki kotrych mu brakuje do swojej wizji, ktora jak przystalo na wyspiarza z Canterbury, pana Roberta Wyatta powinnienem kojarzyc z bandy soft machine, ktorej nazwa mi sie obila o uszy, chocby jako jojowa referencja, ale jednak na last fmie mialem przesluchane tylko kilka pojedycznych trakow z ich dyskografii, wiec to oczywiscie, ze Wyatta slysze teraz pierwszy raz, wiki podpowiada, ze w specyficznych okolicznosciach powstawala plyta, a raczej dosc nieciekawych, bo nagrywanie odbywalo sie w czasie rekonwalescencji po wypadku, ktory przykul Wyatta do wozka do konca zycia, a chociaz w liryce ciezko doszukac sie bezposrednich odniesien do tych wydarzen, a sam material mial byc skomponowany dlugo przed wypadkiem, to jednak musialo to jakos wplynac na brzmienie tego nagrania, ktore mnie zdecydowanie przeroslo zarowno od strony instrumentalnej jak i liryczno wokalnej, bo jak przystalo na wyspiarza z canterbury, to uzywa on cheaky heya cunt slownictwa polaczonego z brytyjskim akcentowaniem, dodatkowo bogato posilkujac sie onometopejami, wiec rekord jest pelny jeczenia, wzdychania i wszelkich piri tiri piri tiri zwlaszcza blizniacze kawalki alife i alifib, wiec o ile nie sluchalo mi sie tego zle, a orginalnosci materialu nie mozna odmowic, to jednak sie odbilem i jedynie pierwszy trak wydaje mi sie zrozumialy, jak to bywa z lowe songami, chociaz w tym wydaniu to nietrafione okreslenie, bo chociaz kawalek o milosci, to jednak prosty nie jest, ale prosty na standardy jakie wyznaczyla plyta, ciekawe jest ze pomimo tego ze Wyatt jest glownym wokalem i gra zarwono perkusyjne fragmenty jak i klawisze, no i wynalazki pokroju kieliszkow, to jednak nie slychac go tak jak slychac muzyka rokowego, a pokazuje sie bardziej jako grajek jazzowy, moze bardziej kompozytor, bo to jednak jego aranzacje gdzie daje miejsce do popisu innym artystom, bo niektore kawalki sa wrecz zdominowane przez artystow, sesyjnych, jak w przypadku piatego utworu alife i obecnej tam saksy, na plejke dodam otwierajacy sea song, ktory jako najprzystepniejsza piosenka calego krazka jest rowniez najczesciej odtwarzanym utworem wedlug spotifaja z tej plyty
Another toothy danger
i was initially going down the line of my standard check out this 70s nonce singing falsetto. but to give it some credit this is clearly some mad jazz shit and not just standard 70s wank.
Interesting musically, but vocals draining
Experimental but not a repeatable listen
Famously composed by drummer Robert Wyatt in hospital after falling out a 3rd-story window. He's been in a wheelchair ever since. Instrumentation is pretty jazz-rock with a psychedelic edge, which I don't mind too much, but Wyatt on vocals is a non-starter for me. His soft, shitty little voice does nothing for me. This is what makes Little Red Riding Hood Hit the Road easily the best song on the album for me: a nice jazz-fusion instrumental track that leans heavily into the atmospheric elements. I was hoping to get more out of this album than I did. Just seems like Wyatt had a lot of half-baked ideas where a few worked but most didn't. Combine that with poor vocal execution and you've got Rock Bottom.
Overall just very odd with weird noises etc. The fact that the oddness is the only thing I remember a day later, clearly says something
People have described this as experimental. I'm more in the obnoxious camp, his voice never seems to sync up with the music and is all over the place
There wasn't really anything here for me. My first listen last night really rubbed me the wrong way. I gave it a second listen today on my walk and it wasn't completely repulsive to me...but much of it was.
70s boring listen.
When I went through a brief period of let's call it "hipsterdom" I would've been all over this. It's not a radio album. The background story is compelling. It's kinda proggy, I guess. My vocabulary fails me right now. But this just left me uninterested. The background of the album really is something but listening to this is just...eh.
very experimental and, unfortunately, quite unpleasant to listen to
Oof. I just didn't get it at all. I rarely give out 1-star ratings because I usually find some redeeming quality, or at least one song I kind of like. But not this one. There's not one song I ever want to hear again. Not one minute of one song. This album wasn't meant for me at all. Even knowing the context of the album (it was made right after he was paralyzed after falling 4 stories); didn't help at all.
1974. Key Songs: Sea Song?
Definitely not my cup of tea.
trying to be experimental doesnt make you experimental
Reallllly long songs that use the same elements over and over again. Too monotonous in my view.
Too painful. I don’t think it was done fir art. I think he’s just shit and taking the piss out of everyone
No thanks, this is utter cack
Slow, glacial paced art rock. Best Tracks: Sea Song, A Last Straw, Alifib
Maybe I missed the point but this was self indulgent, boring, hard to listen to tripe
Disco rarísimo. Demasiado experimental para mí. Sonidos ambientales mezclados algunos de manera extraña, otros no. No es un álbum que le daría una segunda oportunidad.
What the hell did I just listen to? Good for this dude for getting his stuff out on record. This shit is weird.
Did not enjoy. In some areas it sounded like a film score without a film, but not in a good way.
Not familiar with Robert except by name. Even Soft Machine, his band I am familiar with by name and reputation only. Album has 6 long songs, or are they movements or suites. I'll take them one bu one. 1st song; did not like it closer to free jazz than rock, not my cup of tea. 2nd song a little more modal in nature, enjoyed this one more. 3rd song, reminds me a little bit of Miles Davis in a Silent Way. Like this one still more. Closer to a rock sound but still more jazz than anything (not that there's anything wrong with that) 4th song; just kinda weird ...annoying organ sounds, jazzy guitar weird percussive, metronomic breathing sounds and fragile singing add up to a strange listening experience 5th song; more weirdness...a continuation of the previous song. I do like the percussion and the sax in this one. Actually much better than the previous song and perhaps my 2nd favorite so far 6th song; and the last one more of the same anti rock & roll. Just not music for my tastes 1 🌟
Not my style
I get that Wyatt had just suffered a major accident in life, and he was still able to continue composing and playing music. It is impressive. Unfortunately, this experimental rock is a failed experiment.
Rock bottom, scratchy sax on a jazz soundscape. Urrgh.
What in the God's name was that'
Rock Bottom by Robert Wyatt (1974) When Robert Wyatt so self-assertingly identified (then, anyway) as a Communist (not the ‘Eurocommunist’ variety, but the hard core unreconstructed Stalinist ‘Tanky’ type), he invited an assessment of what’s beneath the apparent nonsense on this record. When confronted with innovation, a serious listener will seek to understand. This involves, at minimum, a look into the artist’s cultural context. Now, this is not a political album. It presents itself as experimental, psychedelic ‘rock’. And to be fair, I discerned two moments of beauty in the midst of all the failed experiments on this record. But what kind of over-compartmentalized mind produces these remaining sonic doodles? The listener must set aside the (totally justifiable) pity for the artist’s personal circumstances and assess why is there all this disorder? Why must simple scales be punctuated with seemingly arbitrary and certainly inconsistent atonality? (This ain’t Arnold Schoenberg or Alban Berg.) As an analogy, the same question might be posed upon viewing a Jackson Pollock painting in 1955 or Vincent Van Gogh in 1890. It’s not that it is necessarily bad art. It’s that the ‘why’ of the art is yet to be discerned. A turn to the poetry of Osip Mandelstam is instructive, on the flip side of the Stalin phenomenon. Nonsense can indeed have sublimely potent meaning. But I’m not seeing or hearing it at Rock Bottom. Why, I would ask Mr. Wyatt, is there all this chaos, all this disregard for conventional (at least) conceptions of what is good, true, and beautiful? Surely it’s not merely a Bolshevik revolutionary desire to destroy classic liberal notions of art. Surely it’s not merely Capitalist avarice. Surely it’s not a neo-Gnostic triumph of undefined spirit over matter. Surely it’s not a Socialist grab at the affirmative action brass ring. Critics are at a loss to explain this (I am not alone; and, in the interest of full disclosure, I, too, was a Communist. When I was 11. I grew out of it). One is left scratching one’s head. I really want to know. You got my attention, but briefly. Was that the point all along? 1/5
Tragic story about the musician, but I didn't enjoy the music.
I don't know what that was.
I guess “art rock” means a total lack of anything resembling some kind of song structure, you know like a verse or chorus or even an enjoyable melody. I struggled to get through this
Weird, not my type of music
This was experimental, but not in a way that I enjoy.
Did not vibe with it
I tried but the last straw was the 2nd track on the album and I just couldn't continue...
Probably a reasons I've never heard of this
I like something distinctive, unique, original...weird, even. But not this, not today. No. Sorry.
Not really a fan. Musically I could probably enjoy it, but I do not like the vocals.
I don't blame Robert Wyatt for making this album full of noodling nonsense; I blame the listmaker for pretending as though there were anything of merit here.
Did not enjoy. Somewhat odd.
What the actual??? I don’t know what the artist was on when they recorded this and I don’t know what I would have to be on to enjoy this. No, just no.
Rock Bottom is aptly named and decidedly feels like it belongs there.