The Savage Rose: A Girl I Knew (1968)

 |   |  1 min read

The Savage Rose: A Girl I Knew (1968)

Since Richie Unterberger wrote Unknown Legends of Rock'n'Roll: Psychedelic Unknowns, Mad Genuises, Punk Pioneers, Lo-Fi Mavericks and More in 1998, many of the artists he unearthed (Wanda Jackson, the Chocolate Watch Band, Roky Erickson, Can etc) have enjoyed some considerable cult -- and sometimes even mainstream, success.

Jeez, Sandy Denny whom he singled out even had a 19 CD set (yes, that is nineteen, count 'em) box set in 2010.

Some he wrote about however remain very much on the margins of human knowledge -- like The Savage Rose from Denmark.

Okay, they do get a Wikipedia page (six sentences) but that gets you no closer to their Sixties/Seventies electric and eclectic art-rock which features the vocals of Annisette who anticipated both Kate Bush and Pavlov's Dog.

Founded by classically trained Thomas Koppel (who hooked in his brother and sister for the first incarnation), The Savage Rose were keyboard-driven and after a couple of albums pulled in singer Annisette from a local rock group.

Their self-titled debut album of '68 owed very little to the prevailing winds blowing out of San Francisco or London and instead drew on European folk, jazz and Sixties beat pop as much as rock music.

The album was a success in Denmark, caught the ear of promoters in the States and they played the Newport Festival in '69 slotted betwen Sly Stone and James Brown.

Over time they tried a heavier sound, became involved with radical left-wing politics, and in the mid Seventies Annisette left the band. They carried on and became even more politically active (they played PLO refugee camps in the Lebanon in '80) but this was largely as an acoustic outfit.

They continued to record right up until Koppel's sudden death in 2006.

But it was their early progressive period which is of most musical interest: "The engaging psychedelic lightness balanced by glimpses of darker visions underneath" as Unterberger wrote.

For more one-offs, songs with an interesting backstory or just plain odd things see From the Vaults.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   From the Vaults articles index

David Bowie: This Is Not America (1985)

David Bowie: This Is Not America (1985)

Accidentally catching David Bowie in Labyrinth on television recently reminded just how much he put himself about for a while there. Recording Peter and the Wolf, singing the Little Drummer Boy... > Read more

Billy Brooks: The Jagged Edge (1974)

Billy Brooks: The Jagged Edge (1974)

Not a lot of people could say they were signed to Ray Charles' label and had the great man himself there co-producing with them. Enter longtime trumpeter Billy Brooks who could not only claim... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

TOY LOVE: PULL DOWN THE SHADES (Real Groovy DVD)

TOY LOVE: PULL DOWN THE SHADES (Real Groovy DVD)

Anyone still wondering why all the fuss over thirtysomething years gone Toy Love -- the legacy award induction, double albums on vinyl, one of which has been the first New Zealand vinyl album to... > Read more

THE BARGAIN BUY: Radiohead; OK Computer (EMI)

THE BARGAIN BUY: Radiohead; OK Computer (EMI)

Just as Achtung Baby and Zooropa represented a watershed period for U2, so The Bends of '95 and especially OK Computer of two years later marked a turning point in Radiohead's still-young career.... > Read more