FM is the original soundtrack to the 1978 film FM. The soundtrack won the 1979 Grammy Award for Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical. FM is a double LP loaded with some of the biggest names in rock music. The artists include , and more.
Time Life collections are usually rock-solid groupings of classic songs presented carefully and lovingly, and the FM Rock series is no exception. The theme seems to be songs you might find on a free-form FM station, because each volume contains songs that no commercial program director would come close to allowing on the air. Mixed in with these selections are some classic FM tunes as well, making for a wild and unpredictable listen. For example, Vol. 2 has hit tracks by the Doobie Brothers ("Rockin' Down the Highway"), Rod Stewart ("Every Picture Tells a Story"), and Little Feat ("Willin'"), but also obscurities like Crazy Horse's "Gone Dead Train" and Fleetwood Mac's "Jewel Eyed Judy," as well as oddball choices like Moby Grape's "Gypsy Wedding" and Jimmy Cliff's "The Harder They Come." Beyond being entertaining listening, all the entries in the series could turn listeners on to bands they missed the first time around, and are fine additions to the collection of someone who wants to delve deeper into the music of the '70s.
Heavy on the kind of blues-rock favored by Humble Pie, this is a live outing in front of a too-loud New York audience. Sax player Colin Cooper helps to separate these English midland lads from the heads-down no-nonsense boogie competition, although the emphasis is squarely on guitarist Peter Haycock. His solo electric slide showcase "Country Hat" is a marvel. The band's pop leanings featured so strongly on their studio recordings come through in "I Am Constant." It's a solid outing, and much meatier than subsequent offerings.
'Artaxerxes is a rare beast, perhaps a unique one: an 'opera seria' composed to English words. Almost all of the numbers are solo arias; there are two duets, and an ensemble Finale newly composed by Duncan Druce to replace the missing ending. Arne owes much to Handel, but he tends to write more concisely. This studio recording is based on a staged production, and it shows in the natural way in which the characters interact. The recitatives—also new, composed by Ian Page—are delivered with conviction, flowing seamlessly into the arias. Christopher Ainslie as Artaxerxes woos with honeyed tone, while Caitlin Hulcup as his friend Arbaces impresses with her coloratura. 'The soldier, tir'd of war's alarms', recorded years ago by Joan Sutherland, goes to the excellent Elizabeth Watts as Arbaces' lover. There's much delectable writing for the woodwind and horns, all beautifully played. This lively account of a charming work will give much pleasure' (Classic FM)