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The Invisible Opera Company of Tibet

Tried So Hard single

Dakini Records DKR701 (2013) 7-inch 45RPM

The Invisibles with daevid allen. Camembert Electrique's 'hit' single in a parallel universe? One pressing of 500 heavy vinyl with a protective inner sleeve inside the card pic sleeve. Individually numbered on the inner sleeve. The A-side also appears on Songs From The Temple Of Now.

'Tried So Hard' is such a perfect pop song that had it been released as a single back in 1971 it could maybe have flown up the charts, with the right 'support' - what on earth would Gong's history have been if that had happened… probably best not to dwell on that. However 42 years on the Invisible Opera Co. of Tibet decided to give it the 7" vinyl single treatment and they have come up with something really rather tasty.

The Invisibles have of course always included Gong tunes in their live set and played with daevid allen often enough to be completely comfortable together, so they were ideally placed to record a version of one of the best 'classic' songs on Camembert Electrique. I think they have come up with a very finely tuned beast, one that ticks all the boxes.

It has the powerful rocky edge of the Camembert original, but is perhaps even more meaty, as well acknowledging, and more than ably bringing out the lighter, aspirational, psychedelic and almost whimsical areas the song explores. The production is clean, crisp and dynamically solid in a very pleaseing way and daevid is in great vocal form. As with any good new version of a well loved track it encourages and enables you discover overlooked dimensions and forgotten corners of what is a wonderful song.

The whole release was inspired by and is a homage to the late Kevin Ayers, (little know fact alert) whom the song was written about. The B side is a charged live version recorded by the same line-up at the 'Up Close with daevid allen' event in May 2013.

It's been almost 25 years since the last Invisible vinyl 7", 'Trial By Headline', by the Australian Invisibles Opera band. It too was a pressing of 500, all of which are long since sold, and are sighted very rarely on e-bay.


side 1

  • Tried So Hard Tritsch/Allen

side 2

  • Tried So Hard (live) Tritsch/Allen


  • daevid allen lead vocals
  • Brian Zero Abbott Guitars, backing vocals
  • Jackie Juno Backing vocals
  • Phil O'Sophical Curtis Bass
  • Clive Kinski Buckland-Bork Keyboards
  • Trina McTeabag Backing vocals
  • Dan'tastic Barber Drums - Side A
  • AJ Shaw Drums - Side B