Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection.
Although admittedly a posthumous release, I was very surprised at the rather dismissive tenor of many of the reviews of this album to date. Hopefully this record will be reappraised soon as being a release worthy of anyone's consideration as I feel it does enhance an already rich legacy left behind by this very fine and innovative band. (So what if Charisma wanted to ride the slipstream of the lucrative ELP juggernaut?)
Cat Stevens virtually disappeared from the British pop scene in 1968, at the age of 20, after a meteoric start to his career. He had contracted tuberculosis and spent a year recovering, from both his illness and the strain of being a teenage pop star, before returning to action in the spring of 1970 — as a very different 22-year-old — with Mona Bone Jakon.
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music
After the lacklustre Unfortunate Cup of Tea, the next album was going to be a watershed for Horslips. In the end, they returned broadly to the formula that had brought them so much acclaim for The Tain and produced a concept album based on Irish mythology and full of great songs based on Irish traditional tunes. And it works just as well as The Tain, having brought them enormous critical acclaim. If anything, they show their amazing musicianship off even more, with Charles O’Connor’s fiddle and mandolin swopping riffs with Johnny Fean’s scything lead guitar and Jim Lockhart’s flute,whistle, pipes and keyboards.
In retrospect, it is not hard to find hints of a coming change in the final album Cat Stevens made before a near-death experience and a religious conversion.
A great album recorded in 1963 for Atlantic – one of our favorite ever! Jack Wilson's one of our favorite piano players, and we rave about him all the time on these pages – and one of the reasons why we love him so much is that he was often accompanied by Roy Ayers, who started out his career playing vibes in his group! The pair together are a dream, and this album is arguably their best effort – filled with moody modal cuts, and lots of lyrical interplay that hits these beautiful high points, then dives into pits of darkness. Titles include "Harbor Freeway", "De Critifeux", "Corcovado", "Jackleg", and "Nirvana & Dana".
Features 24 bit remastering and comes with a mini-description. The 27 trombones that earned one of Down Beat's rare 5***** review. Each of the selections on this set has between seven and a dozen trombonists along with a rhythm section. The first five selections were recorded with East Coast musicians and the next six with players from the West Coast but, truth be told, there is no real difference in the style of music.
Features 24 bit remastering and comes with a mini-description. Saxes Inc – a unique sax-heavy session done by Warner Brothers, and a blaring batch of tracks played by an all-star all-sax group that includes Herb Geller, Phil Woods, Gene Quill, Al Cohn, Zoot Sims, Seldon Powell, Hal McKusick, and Georgie Auld! Bob Prince arranged and conducted, and the approach is surprisingly modernist, with the saxes carrying the bulk of the rhythm and melody, as well as the solos – a really great approach that makes for plenty of unique moments – all handled with a sound that's a lot more fluid than you might expect! Titles include "Four Brothers" (of course!), "The Gypsy", "Night In Tunisia", "Jumpin With Symphony Sid", and "Axmobile".
Dire Straits emerged during the post-punk era of the late '70s, and while their sound was minimalistic and stripped down, they owed little to punk. If anything, the band was a direct outgrowth of the roots revivalism of pub rock, but where pub rock celebrated good times, Dire Straits were melancholy…