30 December 2019

Rock-Pop Review: Elvis Presley-Live 1969

Release Date: August 9, 2019
Label: RCA/Legacy Recordings
Elvis, Elvis, and more Elvis! Live 1969 is a comprehensive 11 CD set for the ultimate fan base that exists and is continually growing.

Live 1969 features the release of eleven complete sets from Elvis’ August 1969 engagement at Las Vegas’ International Hotel. Of these performances, four are being released in full for the first time. That fact alone should raise some eyebrows in the worldwide community of supporters of the King’s legacy.

This also marks the 50th anniversary of Elvis Presley’s return to the stage to perform after an eight-year absence fulfilling his movie obligations.  His Las Vegas residency at the International Hotel featured 57 sold-out shows and the live debut of his signature #1 hit “Suspicious Minds.” That track happens to be my personal all-time favorite as it captured the excellence of the band backing Elvis and his ability to command an audience and own the song. He also was able to cover other popular songs in his way giving an audience a complete view of his tremendous talents.

This deluxe package also includes a 52-page booklet with rare photos, memorabilia, and an oral history by Ken Sharp curated from historic interviews with Elvis, Colonel Tom Parker, Tom Jones, Jerry Schilling, James Burton, Cissy Houston, Terry Blackwood, George Klein, Fats Domino, etc. That is the icing on the cake for the live music fan and you have an opportunity to reap the benefits of first-hand discussions from his peers while taking in this massive collection.

I appreciate the music of Elvis Presley and to hear him come to life on this set gave me a new perspective of what a great performer he was. Even after being away for eight years he just picked up where he left off and thrilled every audience he performed for. 

There is some repetition in this set but I think most people would expect that with this much music. He did have his act and storytelling that went into his set but you will get some different setlists to enjoy and a bird’s eye view of what it was like to be there interacting with him. 

Live 1969 may very well be the ultimate live Elvis recording however I think you need to be a superfan to enjoy this to the fullest otherwise if you are a casual listener, that genuinely appreciated the artistry of The King, you would be well advised to listen to this over some time.

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
December 29, 2019

Founder of:

Review Provided By MuzikMan.net

23 December 2019

Prog Rock Review: King Crimson-In the Court of the Crimson King 50th Anniversary Reissue

Release Date: October 25, 2019
Label:  Panegyric
Website
  
The beauty of the current wave of 50th Anniversary box set releases is that they are entering the golden age of modern rock music— the 1970's. If In the Court of the Crimson King foretells a string of influential 50th Anniversary reissues to follow, music fans have cause for celebration. 

In 1969, there was the crisp, airy resonance of vinyl. In the 1980s, Compact Discs sucked out all the air and antisepticised the sound. In the late 1990s, clarity and depth were eliminated altogether through compression to fit on portable digital devices and streaming services. Only recently have we begun to move in the opposite direction. More storage and bandwidth mean larger digital files with "less loss" and high-quality sound has come full-circle and is attainable once again. Herein lies the opportunity to bring these 50th Anniversary reissues back to life by leveraging modern technology to restore the sound to its organic, multi-dimensional form.

This Blu-Ray disc in this collection does just that, featuring all-new 5.1 & stereo mixes by Steven Wilson, approved by Robert Fripp in 24/96 resolution. Wilson not only remixed the original album; he also remixed much of the bonus material that he had mixed initially in 2009. This 4-disk set includes 3 CDs of the original remixed album by Steven Wilson plus instrumental versions, an expanded edition of the alternate album from the Blue-Ray, the original master edition of the 1969 mix, plus additional tracks. Suffice to say, the sound will overtake you and force you to surrender to its majesty.  

I distinctly remember the first time I heard this album. I bought it from a used record store based solely on the bizarre artwork of the Schizoid Man himself, which resembles a modern-day Edvard Munch Scream. On a warm spring day on the porch of my college apartment, I poured myself some Carlo Rossi wine from a jug, scraped enough resin for a decent bong-hit, dropped the needle, and surrendered. "Said the straight man to the late man, where have you been?" I was indeed the late man who had "been here and there and in-between." The album went immediately into heavy rotation and to this day, I can't listen to this seminal masterpiece without thinking back to that afternoon.

To think that In the Court of the Crimson King was King Crimson's debut album boggles the mind. Typically, bands need a few throwaways before finding their identity. King Crimson came out of the gates with unadulterated rawness and a sound much like truth, which hadn't been spoken very loudly until then. Not only did the music illuminate the chaos of the times, so did the lyrics. 1969 is when the walls of establishment crumbled at the hands of the counter-culture, songs such as "21st Century Schizoid Man" conveyed the angst of the dissociative and marginalized youth of the time. Images of burning politicians and starving children shed light on the mental and physical destruction of the Vietnam War and deepened the divide between generations.

Standout tracks include the original studio instrumental take of "21st Century Schizoid Man," which has been completely remixed and re-imagined by David Singleton. It adds Greg Lake vocals from later studio sessions as well as Saxophone and guitar overdubs, creating a juggernaut of a song that infuses energy amidst bravado, leaving the listener's consciousness forever altered. The instrumental closing version of "The Court of the Crimson King" strips the vocals exposing deeper-layered intricacies of sound evoking an entirely different atmosphere.

The dissection and reverse-engineering of this masterpiece provide a bounty of tracks for King Crimson and progressive music fans to sink their teeth into. "Epitaph," for instance, appears in five different forms. The "Isolated vocal, 2019 mix" is the most provocative as it isolates Greg Lake's vocals for three minutes and forty-four seconds before elevating the instrumental tracks to carry the song to its dramatic, yet gloomy conclusion.

Over the years, the band's lineup has evolved with its sound. Their 2019 tour featured eight musicians, including three drummers. They remain highly influential, and their live shows have garnered the highest of accolades. This collection falls between the 40th Anniversary Series remixes a decade ago, the earlier 2019 remastered release, and the planned 2020 box set release (which will include all of this material). What it offers collectors and fans alike is a more affordable package of Steven Wilson's remixes plus rare bonus material. Most importantly, this thoughtfully mixed and packaged release serves as a 50th Anniversary tribute, a genuflection and a gift left at the altar in the Court of the Crimson King.


Tom Endyke - Prog Rock Music Talk Staff
December 21, 2019


REVIEWS PROVIDED BY:



Tracks:
CD 1 - 2019 stereo & instrumental stereo Steven Wilson mixes
01. 21st Century Schizoid Man
02. I Talk to the Wind
03. Epitaph
04. Moonchild
05. The Court of the Crimson King
06. 21st Century Schizoid Man (Instrumental)
07. I Talk to the Wind (Instrumental)
08. Epitaph (Instrumental)
09. Moonchild (Instrumental)
10. The Court of the Crimson King (Instrumental)


CD 2 - Alternate album, expanded edition
01. Wind Session (2019 Stereo mix)
02. 21st Century Schizoid Man (Morgan Studios June 1969 take)
03. I Talk to the Wind (Alternative 2019 mix)
04. I Talk to the Wind (Duo version, full-length master, 2019 mix)
05. Epitaph (Isolated vocal, 2019 mix)
06. Epitaph (Alternate take, 2019 mix)
07. Moonchild (Take 1 2019 mix)
08. The Court of the Crimson King (June 1969 take, 2019 mix)
09. 21st Century Schizoid Man (Trio version, 2019 mix)
Mixed by Steven Wilson except 2 & 5, mixed by David Singleton


CD 3 - Original master edition, expanded
01. 21st Century Schizoid Man
02. I Talk to the Wind
03. Epitaph
04. Moonchild
05. The Court of the Crimson King
06. 21st Century Schizoid Man (Morgan Studios instrumental take, 1969)
07. I Talk to the Wind (Studio run through, 2019 mix)
08. Epitaph (Backing track, 2019 mix)
09. The Court of the Crimson King (Part 1, single a side)
10. The Court of the Crimson King (Part 2, single b side)


Blu-Ray
* 2019, 5.1 and stereo mixes by Steven Wilson in 24/96 resolution (for the first time)


* Original master edition of the 1969 album mix in 24/96 stereo.


* A complete alternate album comprising 2019 mixes by Steven Wilson including a much extended duo version of I Talk to The Wind, a June 19th version of ‘The Court of the Crimson King’ from the band’s final day at Morgan studios in June 1969, an isolated voice dominant version of ‘Epitaph’ & a version of ‘21st Century Schizoid Man’ which combines the Morgan studios instrumental with Greg Lake vocals from Wessex studios and August 2019 overdubs by Mel Collins & Jakko Jakszyk – the latter two mixed by David Singleton.


* A further album’s worth of additional material drawn from studio takes – much of it mixed by Steven Wilson & including extracts from the ‘wind session’ that produced the intro to 21CSM in stereo for the first time, the single a/b sides of the album title track drawn, for the first time since on disc, from the original master tapes & more are also included.


* The Blu-Ray is completed by a set of 2019 instrumental mixes and the surviving fragment of black & white footage from Hyde Park in 1969.

19 December 2019

Rock Review: Laura Cox-Burning Bright

Release Date: November 8, 2019
Label:  Verychords
French guitarist and vocalist, Laura Cox’s sophomore release, Burning Bright, does not presume to blend, overlap, or invent genres. It is Rock and Roll straight, no chaser. There is no trickery here, no curveballs, sliders or screwballs. Burning Bright is a blues-based rock and roll fastball right down the middle. 

Laura Cox’s rise to fame came about via social media when homemade videos of her classic rock covers on YouTube went viral back in 2008. After accumulating over 60 million views, she assembled “The Laura Cox Band,” and this lineup spawned 2017’s critically acclaimed Hard Shot Blues and has stayed intact for Burning Bright. Her playing pays homage to Jimmy Page, Toni Iommi & Billy Gibbons, yet leaves enough room to blaze a path all her own. Her vocals blend the badassery of Lzzy Hale with the soulfulness of Melissa Etheridge.  

Since Laura Cox is bearing the torch of the New Classic Rock movement, it is difficult not to call these tracks derivative. After all, that’s the bus she rode in on. The lyrics on songs such as “Fire Fire” and “Freaking out Loud” are as simple as anything you might hear from the mid-80’s metal bands such as Motley Crue, and Bon Jovi. Yet, the underlying musicianship is far more complex, and the shredding more extraordinary. 

This reviewer gravitated more towards the less in-your-face rockers and the slower blues-based tracks such as “Bad Luck Blues,” “Looking Upside Down,” and “As I Am.” These tracks inject some space into the songs allowing Ms. Cox’s guitar and vocals to breath. The result is that the listener breaths as well, taking in and appreciating the entirety of each song.

With her Les Paul Bacchus Duke guitar, Laura Cox is defibrillating the heart of Rock and Roll, which some have prematurely written off as dead. So, if you like your Rock hard, heavy and heartfelt, Burning Bright will burn brightly for you. 

Tom Endyke - MuzikMan.net Staff
December 14, 2019

REVIEWS PROVIDED BY:
Rate the Tracks

Tracks:
01.  Fire Fire
02.  Bad Luck Blues
03.  Last Breakdown
04.  Looking Upside Down
05.  Just Another Game
06.  Here’s to War
07.  Freaking Out Loud
08.  As I am
09.  River
10.  Letters to the Other side
 

18 December 2019

Robert Fripp’s Introduction To The Guitar Circle Four-Day-Long Event For Guitar Players and Music-Lovers To Be Held in Saratoga Springs, NY - October 22nd - 26th, 2020

For Immediate Release

Robert Fripp’s Introduction To The Guitar Circle Four-Day-Long Event For Guitar Players and Music-Lovers To Be Held in Saratoga Springs, NY - October 22nd - 26th, 2020  


AN INTRODUCTION TO THE GUITAR CIRCLE
October 22-26th. 2020

If music is to enter our world, the role of the audience is as necessary as the role of the musician.

So, for the first time in the life of Guitar Craft and the Guitar Circle, we are inviting audients to this Intro, to learn the techniques and approaches available to Crafty Guitarists.

Music has its own intelligence, but can music change the world? If so, how? How does a musician become present in the place within them where music lives, or visits for a while? How is an audient present within themself when music visits? How does music come into our lives? What is involved in the process of musical performance?

For those interested in guitar playing, work will be on acoustic guitars in the New Standard Tuning – CGDAEG. Guitar meetings / workshops will be in groups of all sizes, including individual meetings with the Guitar Buddies.

This Introduction to the work of the Guitar Circle will also include classes in Alexander Technique, Orchestral Maneuvers, T’ai Chi, Zen meditation, The Process Of Performance, and Doing Nothing – As Much As You Can!

There is nothing solemn about any of this, and I’m intending to have a good time. This is an approach to play, playing, serious play and playing seriously.

I recommend that everyone come with an aim.

You are invited.

Robert Fripp
Friday 8th. November, 2019;
Middle England.

Click below for full details...
https://robertfrippsguitarcircle.com/

An Introduction to the Guitar Circle with Robert Fripp


4 DAYS AND NIGHTS OF ZEN AND THE ART OF GUITAR!
Robert Fripp’s Introduction To The Guitar Circle is a four-day-long event for guitar players and music-lovers of all levels, interests, and tastes. Whether you are a master player, a beginner, or just an enthusiastic fan, our four-day programs offer activities and workshops for you. The environment is strictly non-competitive and is about immersing oneself in the joys of music and our lovely Fall Foliage surroundings of Saratoga Springs, NY! Robert Fripp’s Introduction To The Guitar Circle will only be open to participants who are 18 or older.

Some of the activities at this event will include:

Introduction to the New Standard Tuning
Working in a Guitar Circle
How to Play Schizoid Man!
The Right Hand
The Left Hand
Fingerboard Exercises
Counting and Rhythm
How to Make and Recover from Mistakes
Proper Posture
The Practice of Doing Nothing
The Alexander Technique
Tai Chi
Meditation and Mindfulness
Walking Meditation
Audience Craft

SCHEDULE & ITINERARY
Our full schedule will be announced in the spring, but every day will be filled with classes, workshops, concerts, and personal instruction led by Robert and his team of coaches and musicians. Listed below is an example of a typical day.

TYPICAL DAY

7:00am – 7:45am
Morning sitting (led by Robert)

8:00am – 9:30am
Breakfast and Q&A (for Robert and staff)

10:00am – 11:00am
Multiple Breakout Sessions #1

11:15am – 12:15pm
Multiple Breakout Sessions #2

12:30pm – 1:00pm
Tai Chi or wellness workshop

1:00pm – 2:30pm
Lunch and Q&A (for Robert and staff)

3:00pm – 4:00pm
Multiple Breakout Sessions #3

4:00pm – 5:00pm
Tea time and Q&A (for Robert and staff)

5:15pm – 6:15pm
Multiple Breakout Sessions #4

6:30pm – 7:00pm
Tai Chi or wellness workshop

7:00pm – 8:30pm
Dinner and Q&A (for Robert and staff)

9:00pm – 11:00pm
House of Guitars, Concert or some other activity involving everyone

During Robert Fripp’s Introduction to the Guitar Circle, nothing is compulsory but some things are necessary. Robert feels strongly that alcohol and drug use are incompatible with this work and are strongly discouraged. Hey, the anticipated polyrhythms* alone are enough to deter anyone from even thinking about drinking! So, any participant who partakes in drugs or alcohol during the event may be asked to forego participating in our activities. Thank you for your cooperation.

*Polyrhythms: The simultaneous combination of contrasting rhythms in a musical composition. Rhythmic conflicts, or cross-rhythms, may occur within a single metre (e.g., two eighth notes against triplet eighths or worse!) and may even be reinforced by simultaneous combinations of conflicting metres. You will happily experience some of these during Robert’s event!

FEATURED ARTISTS

ROBERT FRIPP
Guitarists and More
Featuring members of the League of Crafty Guitarists, Orchestra of Crafty Guitarists, The California Guitar Trio, a host of wellness and lifestyle coaches and more!

For more information: https://robertfrippsguitarcircle.com/

17 December 2019

Progressive Jazz Review: Bill Bruford’s Earthworks-Heavenly Bodies – The Expanded Collection

Release Date: November 15, 2019
Labels: Summerfold Records via Cherry Red


Not to offend anyone, but I am not the biggest fan of jazz music. I usually only put it on for background noise. I don’t like how there aren’t any lyrics, and I think it’s a chore to have to sit through jazz music. With that being said, I know how complicated it is to arrange and play a jazz piece. Based on the artwork alone, I would have no interest in this album. With an album title of Heavenly Bodies, combined with what looks to be a bad collage of different pictures as the art, this album seems like some kind of religious experience. Jazz gets a bad reputation for being the “boring old man” music. Unless I am listening to this genre of music live, I would have to agree with the statement. I like jazz that isn’t your typical jazz classic, so this album should be a good discovery for the person who is new to jazz, or never really liked it to begin with.

Now Bill Bruford and his band called “Earthworks” set out to create a style of jazz that pushes the boundaries of the genre. These incredibly talented musicians showcase their playing skills with complicated techniques and difficult-to-play progressions. The names of the songs are oddly specific, but I guess you get to have fun with them when they’re the only words on the track.

“Stromboli Kicks” is the first track on disc one. It sounds like something that could be released today, in 2019. The synth is very prominent in the intro and throughout. The rhythms and notes being played are complex, and I think you would appreciate everything happening if you know anything about music theory. Otherwise, it’s just a cool jazzy song that will make you feel like you’re traveling through space. The ending is an unexpected percussive section that then builds into a big production with multi-cultural elements.

“Up North” is a milder song from disc one. It has the classic jazz sound to it, with some extra added flair from the percussive instrument that sounds like a fork tapping on a glass jar. Halfway through the song, there seems to be a pick-up in rhythm/tempo, which changes the vibe of the song into something you could dance to. “Pigalle” is named after the French neighborhood. It’s the equivalent of naming a jazz song “New Orleans.”  I would say that this is a fitting title. The accordion is what gives it that French feel. I’m not sure if any production editing was done post-recording, but the intro is very intriguing in this song. Somewhere in the middle of listening to “Nerve,” I found the perfect description for the song. It sounds like something off of an older cartoon. For example, the episodes of Tom and Jerry, where the cartoon takes place in space, is the perfect example of what I feel from this song. The clipping and chirping sounds bring out that strong outer space element. Okay, now that I mentioned this cartoon, I can’t get the idea out of my head when listening to the album.

Moving to disc two, “Dewey Eyed Then Dancing” is a good holiday song. It is romantic and uplifting at the same time. It’s a song that any hopeless romantic would dream of dancing to under a lit-up pavilion at night. I could see this song being a soundtrack in a lot of Valentine's movies. I was curious to know what surprise sounded like, and I think that “The Sound Of Surprise” didn’t do it for me. There weren’t as many fun elements as I would have hoped for. Even listening through to the very end, I still was underwhelmed by the song. "Youth" takes me back to the '20s swing era. I feel like dancing during this track, and I could see it being a good track for a '20s themed New Year's Eve party. "Thud" is cluttered with a bunch of moving melody parts. It takes me to the hustle and bustle of New York City. This song is fresh, and the sax solo is not for the faint of heart. Compared to disc one, I would say that disc two was less interesting.

Now, this is an album that you can’t just search for on Spotify. The box set is 24 discs total and will cost $94 on Amazon. It breaks down the cost to less than $4 per disc. That’s an unbeatable deal for the band’s 20 years of work. I think this album is impressive because it puts a new spin on a somewhat boring genre. The holiday season will be here in a week, so take that gift money and get your hands on this album. Any musician would like this album set, and maybe it is just something that you put on in the background, but you’ll have hours of productivity-music with the set. As I said, I wouldn’t have listened to this album, if I wasn’t reviewing it, but I’m glad that I got the opportunity to hear all the greatness contained on it.

Lily Clark – Berklee College of Music Intern
December 14, 2019

Reviews Provided By:
 
Tracks:
Disc 1:
01. Stromboli Kicks
02. Making A Song And Dance
03. Up North
04. Candles Still Flicker In Romania’s Dark
05. Pigalle
06. My Heart Declares A Holiday
07. Temple Of The Winds
08. Nerve
09. Gentle Persuasion
10. It Needn’t End In Tears
11. Libreville
12. Dancing On Frith Street
13. Bridge Of Inhibition

Disc 2:

01. No Truce With The Furies
02. Dewey Eyed Then Dancing
03. A Part And Yet Apart
04. Reveal Without A Pause
05. The Sound Of Surprise
06. White Knuckle Wedding
07. Youth
08. Rosa Ballerina
09. Thud
10. Blues For Little Joe
 

08 December 2019

Various Artists-A Prog Rock Christmas

Release Date: November 1, 2019
Label:  Purple Pyramid

Imagine looking forward to eating at a hyped new restaurant, only to have them lose your reservation, serve you an undercooked entrĂ©e, and an overcooked side. Such is the experience of listening to A Prog Rock Christmas. I had hoped this collection would deliver a progressive twist of sonic experimentation to these seasonal standards. What it provides is ordinary fare minus any prog-rock flights of fancy I had anticipated.

Producer Billy Sherwood, currently of Yes, would have been well served with advice to focus on quality over quantity. Six or eight tracks that elevate and push the boundaries of these classics would have been preferable to the thirteen tracks, which offer little to no such exploration. 

Leslie Hunt and Robin McAuley attempting to cover “Fairytale of New York” is either brave or ill-advised. I’d side with the latter as no version will ever come close to the bittersweet growling of the Shane MacGowan & Kirsty MacColl rendition. Malcolm McDowell as the mean one, Mr. Grinch is so pedestrian and dull, I forgot I was even listening to it and walked out of the room. 

While as a whole, the offering is tepid at best, there are a few individual gems hidden in the rough, which would serve the listener well by adding to a holiday playlist. “Carol of the Bells” by Steve Morse is one such track that actually sounds progressive. “Linus & Lucy” by Geoff Downes is a much-needed playful number. The jazz-fused piano bounces in your ears and sounds fresh. “Happy Christmas (War Is Over) by John Wetton” is soulful and hearty, yet comes across as more country-western than progressive. 

All in all, there is very little “prog” in A Prog Rock Christmas. If you’re looking for some standards interpreted by apt musicians for your office holiday party, this album will serve you well. If you’re looking for an envelope-pushing take on these classics, you’d be better served looking elsewhere. One such place might be The Jethro Tull Christmas Album. It is a season’s celebration with original material mixed with Ian Andersen-interpreted traditional arrangements. It will leave you feeling like Scrooge after his journey with the ghosts of Christmas past, present, and future, full of hope and cheer at the promise of redemption and the essence of Christmas itself.

Tom Endyke - MuzikMan.net Staff
December 4, 2019

REVIEWS PROVIDED BY:

Tracks:
01.  Run with the Fox (Jon Davidson)
02.  Christmas Lights (Kasim Sulton
03.  Carol of the Bells (Steve Morse)
04.  The Twelve Days of Christmas (Annie Haslam)
05.  Wonderful Christmastime (Billy Sherwood, Patrick Moraz)
06.  I Believe in Father Christmas (Martin Turner)
07.  Fairytale of New York (Leslie Hunt, Robin McAuley)
08.  O Come All Ye Faithful (Sonja Kristina)
09.  A Christmas Song (Thijs van Leer)
10.  You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch (Malcolm Mcdowell)
11.  Linus & Lucy (Charlie Brown Christmas Theme) (Geoff Downs)
12.  Silent Night (Nik Turner, Simon House)
13.  Happy Christmas (War is Over) (John Wetton)

04 December 2019

Book Review: The Ballad of Jethro Tull

Product Details
Title: The Ballad of Jethro Tull (Hardcover)
Release Date: November 15, 2019
Hardcover: 224 pages
Publisher: Rocket 88
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1910978426
ISBN-13: 978-1910978429
Product Dimensions: 9.7 x 1 x 11.3 inches


The iconic prog-rock band Jethro Tull is immortalized through their music. There are other ways to achieve that status if you have been around for over 50 years. One way is to provide your fan base with a lavishly bounded hardcover book covering the history of the band. 

We now have The Ballad of Jethro Tull. It is quite an overview from Ian Anderson the band’s originator and leader, and other members of the band over the years.

I had the opportunity to speak to Ian about the book but unfortunately, the audio for my podcast did not transfer over. It was a sad day for this music fan and lifetime JT fan. But such is life and I did retain what was said. What I garnered from our conversation was that Ian was approached by the folks at Rocket 88. It was not his idea nor was he thinking of such a project. 

It all turned out wonderfully as the book is a beautiful documentation of the band with some colorful commentary from Ian and the band members that were involved with the albums that were covered to the point when Ian cut his ties with band and went solo then subsequently got a lineup capable of covering all of the JT catalog and his solo projects. I was amongst the many that saw him and that band on the 2018 50th anniversary tour.

I have to say I have never received anything quite like this book covering a band. The quality of the cover and all the pages and photos are superb! And it is definitely worth the price of $50 on the book’s website. It is going for $70 on Amazon so the choice is yours depending on what shipping costs add up to. Now that is for the classic version. If you want to go with signature version at $350 and claim one of the 500 limited edition copies, Ian’s autograph, a 7” single created by Ian for the book’s title b/w “Marmion,” original art prints by cover illustrator Peter Klucik, all in a clamshell box, then go for it. But you better make your move now as I am sure it will sell out quite quickly. That is quite the gift to put under the tree for your Jethro Tull superfan. 

I had a lot of fun reading all the stories and viewing all the pictures. If you are a fan you will go through this book quickly compared to others you may have hanging around in a box somewhere collecting dust. I admit I am one of those people. If I find a book I have a great interest in like this one, then it is a complete joy taking in every visual and every word and varying viewpoints of all the different band members.

The Ballad of Jethro Tull is an up-close look inside one of the most successful band’s in the world. I think what is so incredible was how it all started and where it all went. It is an amazing story of determination, wit, and persistence getting to the top of the heap in the world of prog-rock and music in general. From the humblest beginnings to superstardom and multi-millionaires is always a great story!

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
December 3, 2019

Founder of:

Review Provided By Prog Rock Music Talk

Eric Burdon & The Animals "When I Was Young – The MGM Recordings 1967-1968" Deluxe 5CD Boxed Set Released February 21, 2020


• A DELUXE BOXED SET FEATURING ALL OF THE CLASSIC ALBUMS BY ERIC BURDON & THE ANIMALS
• FEATURING THE ALBUMS “WINDS OF CHANGE”, “THE TWAIN SHALL MEET”, “EVERY ONE OF US”, “LOVE IS” & THE RARE MONO VERSION OF “WINDS OF CHANGE”
• ALL NEWLY REMASTERED FROM THE ORIGINAL MASTER TAPES
• WITH TEN BONUS TRACKS TAKEN FROM SINGLES, ALL RE-MASTERED FROM THE ORIGINAL MASTER TAPES FOR THE FIRST TIME
• INCLUDES AN ILLUSTRATED BOOKLET WITH NEW ESSAY AND A POSTER

Esoteric Recordings is pleased to announce the release of a new boxed set featuring all of the albums recorded by ERIC BURDON & THE ANIMALS for the MGM Records label issued between October 1967 and December 1968. ERIC BURDON & THE ANIMALS came together in December 1966 when the original Animals had ground to a halt. Vocalist Eric Burdon recruited Vic Briggs (guitar, piano), John Weider (guitar, violin, bass), Danny McCulloch (bass) and Barry Jenkins (drums) to form a new group which changed direction away from raucous Rhythm and Blues and embraced Psychedelic rock and the influences of the emerging counter-culture. Signing to MGM Records in the USA (where he became based) and teaming up with producer TOM WILSON (also famed for his work with BOB DYLAN, THE MOTHERS OF INVENTION & THE VELVET UNDERGROUND), the band’s debut single “WHEN I WAS YOUNG” was released in April 1967 and was a powerful statement, featuring Weider’s violin and Briggs’ fuzzed guitar, becoming a hit in Europe, Australia and the USA. The B-side of the single A GIRL NAMED SANDOZ was a psychedelic ode to the Swiss pharmaceutical company which developed LSD. The follow-up single, SAN FRANCISCAN NIGHTS, issued in August 1967, came on the heels of the band’s famed appearance at the MONTEREY POP FESTIVAL in June 1967 and would be the band’s biggest hit, breaking the top twenty in the UK, Europe and the USA. The band’s debut album, WINDS OF CHANGE was issued in October 1967 and featured the singles SAN FRANCISCAN NIGHTS and GOOD TIMES, along with an inventive cover version of PAINT IT BLACK and the psychedelic rockers YES, I AM EXPERIENCED (a tribute to Burdon’s friend Jimi Hendrix) and IT’S ALL MEAT.

The album “THE TWAIN SHALL MEET” was recorded in December 1967 but not issued until May 1968 and featured two further singles, MONTEREY and SKY PILOT (Parts One & Two). Incredibly 1968 would see a further two album releases by the group in the USA and Europe; “EVERY ONE OF US”, recorded in June and issued in August of that year, was a fine album which saw ZOOT MONEY join the band on organ and piano, but inexplicably the album failed to gain a release in the UK. By the time of its release, Vic Briggs had departed to be replaced by ANDY SUMMERS (formerly with Zoot Money in the band DANTALIAN’s CHARIOT) on guitar. This line-up recorded the double album “LOVE IS” in Los Angeles in October 1968, issued only as a single LP in the UK, which featured imaginative cover versions of RIVER DEEP, MOUNTAIN HIGH, RING OF FIRE (also a hit single in many countries) and Traffic’s COLOURED RAIN. The album also featured the song GEMINI which segued in to a fine re-make of the DANTALIAN’s CHARIOT classic THE MADMAN (RUNNING THROUGH THE FIELDS). Released in December 1968, it was to be the final album by the group. Burdon remained in the United States and joined forces with the group WAR in 1969.

The set features the albums “WINDS OF CHANGE” (both stereo and mono versions), “THE TWAIN SHALL MEET”, “EVERY ONE OF US” and “LOVE IS”, all newly re-mastered from the original master tapes, along with ten bonus tracks drawn from the band’s single releases, including the classic B-sides A GIRL NAMED SANDOZ, AIN’T THAT SO and GRATEFULLY DEAD, all remastered from recently located original master tapes. Also included is an illustrated booklet with new essay and a replica poster. “WHEN I WAS YOUNG – The MGM Recordings” is a fine tribute to the music of Eric Burdon & the Animals.

TRACK LISTING

DISC ONE

WINDS OF CHANGE
(RE-MASTERED STEREO MIX)
RELEASED IN OCTOBER 1967

1. WINDS OF CHANGE
2. POEM BY THE SEA
3. PAINT IT BLACK
4. THE BLACK PLAGUE
5. YES, I AM EXPERIENCED
6. SAN FRANCISCAN NIGHTS
7. MAN – WOMAN
8. HOTEL HELL
9. GOOD TIMES
10. ANYTHING
11. IT’S ALL MEAT
BONUS TRACKS
12. WHEN I WAS YOUNG
13. A GIRL NAMED SANDOZ

A & B-SIDES OF SINGLE –
RELEASED IN MAY 1967

14. AIN’T THAT SO

B-SIDE OF SINGLE –
RELEASED IN AUGUST 1967

15. GRATEFULLY DEAD

B-SIDE OF SINGLE –
RELEASED IN OCTOBER 1967

16. ANYTHING (SINGLE VERSION)

B-SIDE OF SINGLE –
RELEASED IN MAY 1968

DISC TWO

THE TWAIN SHALL MEET
(RE-MASTERED EDITION)
RELEASED IN MAY 1968

1. MONTEREY
2. JUST THE THOUGHT
3. CLOSER TO THE TRUTH
4. NO SELF PITY
5. ORANGE AND RED BEAMS
6. SKY PILOT
7. WE LOVE YOU LIL
8. ALL IS ONE
BONUS TRACKS
9. SKY PILOT (PART ONE) (MONO SINGLE)
10. SKY PILOT (PART TWO) (MONO SINGLE)

A & B-SIDES OF SINGLE –
RELEASED IN JANUARY 1968

11. MONTEREY (MONO SINGLE VERSION)

A-SIDE OF SINGLE –
RELEASED IN MAY 1968

DISC THREE

EVERYONE OF US
(RE-MASTERED EDITION)
RELEASED IN AUGUST 1968

1. WHITE HOUSES
2. UPPERS AND DOWNERS
3. SERENADE TO A SWEET LADY
4. THE IMMIGRANT LAD
5. YEAR OF THE GURU
6. ST. JAMES INFIRMARY
7. NEW YORK 1963 –
AMERICA 1968
BONUS TRACK
8. WHITE HOUSES (SINGLE VERSION)

A-SIDE OF SINGLE –
RELEASED IN NOVEMBER 1968

DISC FOUR

LOVE IS
(RE-MASTERED EDITION)
RELEASED IN DECEMBER 1968

1. RIVER DEEP, MOUNTAIN HIGH
2. I’M AN ANIMAL
3. I’M DYING, OR AM I?
4. RING OF FIRE
5. COLOURED RAIN
6. TO LOVE SOMEBODY
7. AS THE YEARS GO PASSING BY
8. GEMINI
9. THE MADMAN (RUNNING THROUGH THE FIELDS)
BONUS TRACK
10. RIVER DEEP, MOUNTAIN HIGH (SINGLE VERSION)

B-SIDE OF SINGLE – RELEASED IN NOVEMBER 1968

DISC FIVE

WINDS OF CHANGE
(RE-MASTERED MONO MIX)
RELEASED IN OCTOBER 1967

1. WINDS OF CHANGE
2. POEM BY THE SEA
3. PAINT IT BLACK
4. THE BLACK PLAGUE
5. YES, I AM EXPERIENCED
6. SAN FRANCISCAN NIGHTS
7. MAN – WOMAN
8. HOTEL HELL
9. GOOD TIMES
10. ANYTHING
11. IT’S ALL MEAT

To pre-order: https://www.cherryred.co.uk/product/eric-burdon-the-animals-when-i-was-young-the-mgm-recordings-1967-1968-5cd/



Press inquiries (North America): Glass Onyon PR, PH: 1-828-350-8158, glassonyonpr@gmail.com

03 December 2019

Crossover Prog Review: Be-Bop Deluxe-Modern Music Reissue (4 CD/1 DVD)

Release Date:  December 6, 2019
Label:  Esoteric Recordings


Born out of the blues-based British rock scene of the late 1960s, Be-Bop Deluxe are part glam, part pop, part punk, and part prog. This limited five disk (4 CD/1 DVD) reissue of their 1976 classic Modern Music is a complete remaster from the original tapes. The box set contains unreleased out-takes, a BBC Radio concert performance, A TV session from BBC’s Old Grey Whistle Test, and a previously unreleased bootleg of a performance at the Riviera Theater in Chicago. These recordings were all captured during the height of the band’s creativity in 1976.

Founder Bill Nelson’s vocals conjure the earthiness of Billy Joel mixed with the gravitas of David Bowie. Lyrically, the album was inspired by the disillusionment Nelson felt toward the music business after touring the U.S. and a longing for home. Far ahead of their time, one doesn’t have to listen too carefully to hear the influence they had on post-punk English bands such as The Jam, XTC & Joy Division.

Disc 1 contains the remastered album in its entirety. “Kiss of Light” is chockfull of catchy hooks amplified by screaming guitar. It is but one side of the band as they switch gears with a softer, multi-textured beauty in “The Gold at the End of My Rainbow.” “Shine” is an extended seven-minute rock and funk jam initially released as the B side to “Kiss of Light” and this reviewer’s personal favorite.

Disc 2 is the real gem of the collection with “First Versions” and “New Stereo Mixes” of the entire album.  Those that stand out are: “The Bird Charmer’s Destiny” and “Forbidden Lovers.” Free from the sanitization of heavy production, these tracks are sharp, organic renditions, and the heart and soul of the collection. The “New Stereo Mixes” give the listener a feel for how alternative arrangements may have affected the final song.

Disc 3 gives the listener a taste of Modern Music live, with select tracks from a live show at the Hammersmith Odeon in London. “Blazing Apostles” is an extended twelve-minute sojourn where the progressive runs of Nelson’s concise guitar work are met with Simon Fox’s deep rhythms and Andrew Clark’s dancing piano riffs. This respite rings a bell in the harbor of your mind, clearing the fog and guiding you safely to shore.

While Disc 3 constrains itself to Modern Music, Disc 4 reaches back with music from the band’s first three albums, Axe Victim (1974), Futurama (1975), and Sunburst (1976) live from Riviera Theater in Chicago. Previously unreleased, the live guitar work of Bill Nelson on this disk is exceptional and will leave you wondering how he flew under the radar for so long and never reached the commercial success he so deserves. On this disc, you’ll hear the unrestrained sounds of the band breathing new life into their most popular hits at the time.

Be-Bop Deluxe is a sound you’ll feel you’ve heard before, yet it is unlike anything you’ve heard before. Textures, even within the same songs, are interspersed to produce a profound effect. You’ll hear T-Rex-like rock riffs followed by Genesis-like playful explorations followed by Jeff Buckley-like resonant vocals. If you’re discovering Be-Bop Deluxe for the first time, you’ll be pleasantly surprised and feel as if you’ve unearthed a real gem.  If you’ve known them all along, this reissue, especially Disc 2 and 4, will take your appreciation to new heights.
 
Tom Endyke - MuzikMan.net Staff
November 22, 2019

REVIEWS PROVIDED BY:


TRACKS:
Disc 1: CD
Modern Music
The Original Stereo Mix:

01. Orphans of Babylon
02. Twilight Capers
03. Kiss of Light
04. The Bird Charmers Destiny
05. The Gold at the End of My Rainbow
06. Bring Back the Spark
07. Modern Music
08. Dancing in the Moonlight (All Alone)
09. Honeymoon on Mars
10. Lost in the Neon World
11. Dance of the Uncle Sam Humanoids
12. Modern Music (Reprise)
13. Forbidden Lovers
14. Down on Terminal Street
15. Make the Music Magic
16. Shine (B-Side of Single)

Disc 2: CD
Modern Music
The New Stereo Mix:

01. Orphans of Babylon (New Stereo Mix)
02. Twilight Capers (New Stereo Mix)
03. Kiss of Light (New Stereo Mix)
04. The Bird Charmers Destiny (New Stereo Mix)
05. The Gold at the End of My Rainbow (New Stereo Mix)
06. Bring Back the Spark (New Stereo Mix)
07. Modern Music (New Stereo Mix)
08. Dancing in the Moonlight (New Stereo Mix)
09. Honeymoon on Mars (New Stereo Mix)
10. Lost in the Neon World (New Stereo Mix)
11. Dance of the Uncle Sam Humanoids (New Stereo Mix)
12. Modern Music (Reprise) (New Stereo Mix)
13. Forbidden Lovers (New Stereo Mix)
14. Down on Terminal Street (New Stereo Mix)
15. Make the Music Magic (New Stereo Mix)
16. Shining (New Stereo Mix)
17. Forbidden Lovers (First Version)
18. The Bird Charmer’s Destiny (First Version)

Disk 3: CD
BBC Radio One “In Concert” October 2, 1976 at Hammersmith Odeon London

01. Made in Heaven
02. Bring Back the Spark
03. Kiss of Light
04. Adventures in a Yorkshire Landscape
05. Fair Exchange
06. Ships in the Night
07. Twilight Capers
08. Modern Music
09. Blazing Apostles

Disk 4: CD
Live at the Riviera Theatre, Chicago, March 1976.

01. Fair Exchange
02. Stage Whispers
03. Life in the Air Age
04. Sister Seagull
05. Adventures in a Yorkshire Landscape
06. Maid in Heaven
07. Ships in the Night
08. Bill’s Blues
09. Blazing Apostles

Disk 4: DVD