A double-length live set from the legendary Modern Jazz Quartet – recorded in Scandinavia in 1960, almost as a summation of the group's growing genius in the 50s! The tunes are a mix of John Lewis and Milt Jackson originals, plus other songs all given the wonderful MJQ twist – distilled into a sublime blend of piano, vibes, bass, and drums – all delivered with a sense of class, but never too much polish. The album is live, but still has that sophisticated composure that made the group so unique at the time – and the whole thing's a perfect complement to their famous studio albums on Atlantic!
Matthews Southern Comfort is a transitional album for Matthews. Having recently exited Fairport Convention, this record pays tribute to that period of his career in both material ("A Castle Far") and in the choice of musicians who back him (many of them from Fairport Convention). At the same time, songs like "A Commercial Proposition" indicate where Matthews' future work is headed. With Second Spring, the other album included on this two-fer, Southern Comfort is a real band, and in addition to Matthews also includes Roger Swallow (ex-Marmalade) and Marc Griffiths (ex-Spooky Tooth). Although there is really nothing that makes this a memorable record, it's still quite nice overall.
Michael Joseph Jackson (August 29, 1958 – June 25, 2009) was an American singer, songwriter and dancer. Dubbed the "King of Pop", he was one of the most popular entertainers in the world, and was the best-selling music artist at the time of his death. Jackson's contributions to music, dance, and fashion along with his publicized personal life made him a global figure in popular culture for over four decades…
This two-fer from the Australian Raven label is a part of a series of Delbert McClinton reissues. All of them come with new liner notes, session photos, and bonus tracks. These two albums, from 1980 and 1981, respectively, represent a renaissance for McClinton of sorts. While he never had a fallow period creatively, The Jealous Kind allowed him a renewed commercial viability even if it was short-lived. Both records were issued by the Muscle Shoals Sound imprint of Capitol Records and were produced by Barry Beckett with the Muscle Shoals rhythm section and horns. While the first disc is centered around diversity in its song choices – by everyone from Larry Henley to Bobby Charles to Van Morrison to Al Green to Jerry Williams – and took radical approaches to reinterpreting the material through soul, blues, funk, rock, and country, the latter chose hard-driving Southern-fried funk and R&B and a relatively close-to-the-vest approach in terms of material – most notably covers of "In the Midnight Hour" and Naomi Neville's "Lipstick Traces (On a Cigarette)".
The impeccable steel guitar sound of the great Russ Hicks is the driving force behind Barefoot Jerry, whose 1971 debut Southern Delight and self-titled 1972 follow-up make up this welcome reissue.
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection
Year 1979, controversial year, the end of the golden decade of the seventies (musically speaking). It’s not only because I say it, but surprisingly, this is one of Renaissance’s best albums and last. We should have thought that because they gave up their classic and epic 10 minute long songs, it was the end of the band.
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection
Yes, another outstanding Renaissance album, AMONG THEIR BEST ONES! On this one, the omnipresent & OUTSTANDING classical arrangements are really in the foreground, really participating to the melody! Clearly, Renaissance is a band that is better when having an accompanying orchestra! Again, the style is still strongly baroque symphonic. Just hear this combination of relatively modern keyboards and strings+horn arrangements: SUBLIME! Annie’s lead vocals are very loud, pure and never bland.
The eighth and ninth studio albums (there was a live recording between them) from the Atlanta Rhythm Section got a belated U.K. CD release in 2010. These closed out the act's affiliation with Polydor Records and are condensed onto a single CD here, as well as digitally remastered. It's another in the classy series of ARS reissues from BGO, which has treated the Southern pop act's catalog with utmost respect on four previous discs that bring the group's original albums back in print for collectors and music fans who want more than the 17 hits on Polydor's well-chosen 1982 vintage Best Of. Liner notes from Campbell Devine tend to be fawning but include a comprehensive history of the band, recounting its story leading up to and even after the recording of these tunes. Musically, ARS captured a unique style halfway between the smooth West Coast pop of the late '70s and the Southern rock of the era.
Although former New Christy Minstrels singer Barry McGuire scored a fluke novelty hit with the Bob Dylan-styled folk-rock protest anthem "Eve of Destruction" in the summer of 1965, neither he nor producer Lou Adler's startup label Dunhill Records seems to have had a long-term plan for his solo career beyond trying to score another hit single. Naturally, Dunhill quickly issued an Eve of Destruction LP, filling the tracks with McGuire covers of recent folk hits and more originals by P.F. Sloan, who'd penned the hit. Sloan also wrote the follow-up singles "Child of Our Times" and "This Precious Time," neither of which made the Top 40. By the end of the year, Dunhill had another McGuire LP, This Precious Time, again mixing Sloan songs with other people's hits like "Do You Believe in Magic" and "Yesterday." That is the first of two McGuire albums combined on this two-fer CD reissue.
Bruce Cockburn's self-titled debut's blend of diversity, enthusiasm, and innocence never quite resurfaced again in his work, especially in his more clinical, politically inclined tracts of later decades. The opening number, "Going to the Country," still evokes that hippie-esque, back-to-the-earth movement as well as any song ever recorded, complete with a sly wink that keeps it fresh to this day. And since this was 1970, the album also comes equipped with some of those quaint excesses of the period; try the nasal tone poem gracing "The Bicycle Trip." "Musical Friends" remains a lively, happy-go-lucky classic with piano signature lifted from Paul McCartney's playbook; it's difficult to picture the dour Cockburn of more recent years ever having this much fun. In contrast, "Thoughts on a Rainy Afternoon" offers a trance-like, introspective atmosphere reminiscent of British folkie legend Nick Drake.