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Music / Ogdens' Nut Gone Flake

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I will sing it a deep joy of a songload in your eardroves

"The Small Faces had already shown a surprising adaptability to psychedelia with the single "Itchycoo Park" and much of their other 1967 output, but Ogdens' Nut Gone Flake pretty much ripped the envelope."
Bruce Eder, Allmusic

Ogdens' Nut Gone Flake is the third studio album by The Small Faces, released in 1968. This album has become one of the seminal works of Psychedelic Rock, breaking new ground with the innovative, if impractical, circular sleeve and in turning the whole of the second side to a whimsical Fairy Tale with spoken narrative interspersed with song, telling the tale of Happiness Stan and his search for the missing half of the moon. The band originally approached Spike Milligan to speak the narrative but when he turned them down they turned to the veteran radio entertainer "Professor" Stanley Unwin whose trade mark was Unwinese, or "Basic Engly Twenty Fido", a surreal and mangled form of English inspired by Lewis Carroll's Jabberwocky. The first side is a mixture of hard rocking, Music Hall and East End pub knees-up.


It is also their final studio album before the band's break-up in early 1969, and is their final studio album to feature Ronnie Lane. The band would release a further two album in a late-70's reunion, although these are often left out of the band's discography.


Side One

  1. "Ogdens' Nut Gone Flake" (2:26)
  2. "Afterglow" (3:31)
  3. "Long Agos And Worlds Apart" (2:35)
  4. "Rene" (4:29)
  5. "Song Of A Baker" (3:15)
  6. "Lazy Sunday" (3:05)

Side Two

  1. "Happiness Stan" (2:35)
  2. "Rollin' Over" (2:50)
  3. "The Hungry Intruder" (2:15)
  4. "The Journey" (4:12)
  5. "Mad John" (2:48)
  6. "Happydaystoytown" (4:17)


Principal Members:


  • Big Creepy-Crawlies: "The Fly". After Stan has worked his magic. Big enough to carry Stan on its back for seven days.
    And Stan, having the possey power of the Magicold, ah, standed over, roley out the sleevey, wavely hand, hovery hovery hovery hovery and out with these magic wordy. If all the flies were one fly, what a great enormouse flyfelolifer that would bold, oh. And there, incredible but oh dear, hovery hovery.
  • Character Title: "Rene", "Happiness Stan", "Mad John".
  • Concept Album: Featuring the tale of Happiness Stan and his search for the missing half of the moon.
  • Cranky Neighbor: "Lazy Sunday"
    Wouldn't it be nice to get on with me neighbours
    But they make it very clear they've got no room for ravers
    They stop me from groovin', they bang on me wall
    They're doing me crust note  in, it's no good at all
  • Design Student's Orgasm: The cover design replicates, with small but significant variations, an Edwardian tobacco tin.
  • Face on the Cover: Done very subtly; the band members are drawn in profile on the four exhibition medals on the right-hand side.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar:
    • "Rene", making effective use of Cockney rhyming slang.
    If you can spare the money, you'll have a ball
    She'll have your oars note  out!
    • In Stanley Unwin's narrative
    Gnomespain, Huckleberry fickle tickle my fingold, huh, boy blue left his horn stuffin under the settee and brought his melotrone, and freaked them all out.
  • Hooker with a Heart of Gold: "Rene"
    She's Rene, the docker's delight, and a ship's in every night
    Gropin' wiv a stoker from the coast of Kuala Lumpur
  • Instrumental: "Ogdens' Nut Gone Flake".
  • Intercourse with You: "Afterglow"
    I'm happy just to be with you
    And loving you the way I do
    It's everything I need to know
    Just resting in the afterglow of your love
  • Job Title: "Song of a Baker"
  • MacGuffin: In the tale of Happiness Stan, the whereabouts of half of the moon.
  • Neologizer: Stanley Unwin's narration on side 2:
    Now after a little lapse of time, Stan became deep hungry in his tumbload. Oh, after all he struggly tricky out several milode, and anyone would suffer under this. So suddenly he dood a deep thoucus, out with his lunchy bag, just about to do a little nibbload of his mincy meaty, when...
  • Mama's Baby, Papa's Maybe: Somewhat inverted with "Rene"
    Well, there's a kid of every shape and colour
    Safely hid in coal-sheds, double-locked
    Where it's been said that Rene is the mother
    I wonder - well, there you go!
  • Moral Guardians: Immediate Records took out an advertisement to publicise the album which took the form of a parody of the Lord's Prayer. This prompted outrage in the press.
  • Non-Appearing Title: "Song Of A Baker", "The Hungry Intruder", "The Journey". The album title is represented by the instrumental Title Track but doesn't appear in any of the lyrics.
  • Obfuscating Insanity: "Mad John"
    John had it sussed he was living the life of a tramp note 
    Yes his bed was the cold and the damp but the sun was his friend
    He was free
    So here was a wise one who loved all the haters
    He loved them so much that their hate turned to fear
    And shaking from behind their curtains the loved ones would hear.
  • Once Upon a Time: "Happiness Stan"
    Now of course like all real life stories this also begins, once upon a ti-to.
  • One-Woman Song: "Rene"
  • One-Word Title:
    • "Afterglow", although in some versions this appears as "Afterglow of Your Love" or parenthesised as "Afterglow (of Your Love)"
    • "Happydaystoytown"
  • Packaged as Other Medium: The album was originally packaged in a circular metal container like a very large tobacco tin. When this proved Awesome, but Impractical the packaging was was changed to a circular cardboard gatefold sleeve. A limited number of the CD version was sold in metal tins.
  • Pep-Talk Song: "Happydaystoytown"
    Life is just a bowl of All-Bran
    You wake up every morning and it's there
    So live as only you can
    It's all about enjoy it 'cos ever since you saw it
    There ain't no one can take it away.
  • Product Placement:
    • "Happydaystoytown"
    Life is just a bowl of All Bran
    • Almost, but not quite, with the album title. Nut-Brown Flake was a pipe tobacco made by Ogden's of Liverpool from 1899.
  • Shout-Out:
    • To Greek mythology via an operetta by Jacques Offenbach ("Orpheus in the Underworld") in the inimitable style of Stanley Unwin
    Like August in the undergrowth, there it was
    • To Listen With Mother, a BBC radio show for small children in the 50s and 60s which always began the story with "Are you sitting comfortably? Then I'll begin". Stanley Unwin again.
    Are you sitty comftybold twosquare on your botty? Then I'll begin
  • Special Guest: "Professor" Stanley Unwin narrates this album.
  • Step Up to the Microphone: Ronnie Lane sings lead vocals on "Song Of A Baker", "The Journey" and "Happydaystoytown". Ian McLagan sings lead vocals on "Long Agos And Worlds Apart".
  • Weird Moon: Happiness Stan wants to know where half the moon has gone. His quest takes him seven days, so by the time he's able to consult Mad John, John is able to point to the full moon. Unwin's telling it makes it really weird.
    And John linked arms with him and, walking out steppa by steppa, and he pointed with a Cockney forefingold, there, up in the heavenly bode, what! Stan realized, now, which it struck him like a smacker o'blueidy, which coming out ffst turn you never thoucus before. As the sun rise in the early morny, so the recall of the moon in the eve, ah, and he thought.


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