Album Review

ARTICLE ABOUT Deep Purple FROM SOUNDS, October 25, 1975

Time would definitely tell for this record. A very interesting perspective from the time it was released here. Do you agree with Mr. Barton?
Read on!

IMG_3574

Purple: tastes good, but…

Deep Purple: `Come Taste The Band` (Purple TPFA 6715) 39 mins.

Album review by Geoff Barton

Deep Purple have undergone personnel changes in the past and have always successfully pulled themselves through. Happily, `Come Taste The Band`, featuring guitarist Tommy Bolin in Ritchie Blackmore`s stead, brings the band out of their most recent crisis – although not as thoroughly nor as completely as you may have hoped.
This is a particularly fine rock album – but is that really enough? Although `Come Taste The Band` is on a rung above both `Burn` and the jaded `Stormbringer`, it`s not quite up to the required height. To justify their position as one of the world`s top bands and to quell the somewhat cynical rumours that they`ll never be able to fully recover from Blackmore`s departure. Purple needed to come up with a killer LP, something that would stand up proudly alongside the likes of `In Rock` and `Machine Head`. This isn`t it.
Tommy Bolin is an accomplished guitarist; of that there`s no doubt. He`s slotted into the band as neatly as a well-worn key into its lock. He`s injected a heavy dose of fresh energy – I haven`t heard Purple play with such boyish enthusiasm in a long time. His guitar work is succinct, immensely fluid, but never overbearing – indeed, `CTTB` displays a much freer, give-and-take musical attitude than even several early Purple albums.
The problem lies with the quality of the songs. Bolin`s songwriting prowess (he`s contributed eight numbers) is OK – yet he`s a long way from being able to write numbers of the calibre of `Space Truckin“, `Smoke On The Water`, or even (to switch to `RB`s Rainbow album) `Man On The Silver Mountain`.
Even so, they`re not appreciably different from the band of old, here – if anything, they seem to have consciously adhered to tradition, with numbers like `Comin` Home` (even though it has brief `Quadrant Four` guitar) and `Drifter`.
There are snatches, however, that may serve to betray the direction in which Purple may move in the future: the initially punchy `Love Child` has an incongruous funky section, together with what could well be Billy Preston`s moog. `Gettin` Tighter` and `I Need Love` have brief funk passages, as well.
Still, before I get too tied up in (minor) criticisms, let it be said that there is a lot to get excited about, here: notably the rampant `Dealer`, with its `Purple Haze`- like opening, timely ballad section and Hughes` meaty vocals more than making up for its hackneyed lyrical theme, and `Lady Luck`, a potential single.
`Come Taste The Band` is an album that stands head and shoulders above your normal mundane rock release, but at the same time the question must be asked: does it show enough potential and promise to ensure the new Purple a safe passage into the future? Time will tell.

Deep Purple

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!
1. Send me an e-mail if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
2. The offer should be 20 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.

 

 

Advertisements

ARTICLE ABOUT Pink Floyd FROM SOUNDS, September 6, 1975

Now, this review is a surprise! First hand reaction to this album is baffling, seeing as it today may be counted as one of rock history`s greatest albums ever.
Read on!

IMG_3310

Album review:

Pink Floyd: `Wish You Were Here` (Harvest) (35:30)

Is two and one half years too long for any rock band to spend between albums? Was Rome built in a day? Architecture is, after all, as important to the Floyd as music. Not that they`ve lain idly around since `Dark Side Of The Moon`. There has been steady touring to consolidate their new-found position, the abandoned recording of an album that did away with all musical instruments, and the composition of songs – some have ended up on this platter. But two and a half years? This album is light years better than `DSOTM`. That album was patchy, a first attempt to formulate all the bits and pieces of ideas from previous works into one coherent whole, presenting an album rather than a series of songs. It was also a bit light in inspiration. This record achieves all those aims, synthesising nearly all their post-`Umma Gumma` thinking into one melange, from `One Of These Days` to `Atom Heart Mother` to `Alan`s Psychedelic Breakfast`. The record opens with an almost Mahler like overture, all sounds courtesy of Rick Wright, sequelling into a long, guitar dominated intro to `Shine On Crazy Diamond`. At times Gilmour repeats himself from `Echoes` and he is never unpredictable, though I don`t mean to belittle his limitations – with the exception of Wright, virtuosity isn`t important within the confines of the Floyd. Like good architects they`re concerned with form, with structure. That`s all this album is. `Diamond` is a measured homage to Syd Barrett, the spectre they can`t shake off, a (lack of) presence that seems to be felt more and more as they continue to add increasingly refined arabesques to the niche they have carved since his departure. The lyrics aren`t the most inspired, but fit the bill. A boozy sax solo undercut by a nicely juxtaposed repeating guitar figure takes us out to the corridor, through a series of doors, into the engine room and `Welcome To The Machine`, which is downright weird.

Apart from a 12-string, Wright is the only man present, providing great sound effects throughout, perfectly punctuating the lyrics. This is his showpiece, though his work throughout makes him the hero of the platter – no idle fingers on his hands. The lyrics could almost be about Syd again. `Have A Cigar` is a conversation from manager to group. The one track that sets no higher pretension than to boogie down, in three short verses its scalpel sharp lyrics expose the exact philosophy of Seventies rock. Certainly the chorus deserves to become this decade`s anthem. The tune is cut short by a blast of synth, reappears on a radio, someone twists the dial and then we`re lifting into `Wish You Were Here`, all multitracked acoustics and French horns and piano. The scouring pad vocal is back, singing Dylan via Ian Hunter. Cosmic wind moves into a long passage that could be either the outro to the previous song or the intro to a reprise of `Shine On Crazy Diamond`. Building from a bouncing synthi bass line we soon find ourselves, engulfed in echo, in a typical Floyd construction. Mason and Waters hold down a remarkably funky rhythm line while Wright and Gilmour go quietly crazy. Although Gilmour`s lead work is fairly standard his rhythm is terrific, constantly weaving and interacting with Mason-Waters Overdrive. From `Shine On` they move into another instrumental piece which features a moderately funky clarinet solo – you can even bump to parts of it – and then the epilogue leaves us much as we entered. There isn`t the grandiose pomposity of `Moon`, nor is there the same bombastic power. Things have been tightened up, surfaces smoothed, interfaces blurred. That there are only four skeletal songs is irrelevant; we`re not dealing with songs on a record anymore but environments, creations of mood through specific textures of sound. Ultimately, this album forces the question: where do they go from here? Although slow, are they moving into a new realm of music? Or are they just running out of ideas?

IMG_3346

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!
1. Send me an e-mail if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
2. The offer should be 20 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.

 

ARTICLE ABOUT David Bowie, Alice Cooper, Kansas and Argent FROM BILLBOARD, March 15, 1975

I thought that these record reviews from Billboard would be fun to share with you. It is especially interesting to read these because of their recommendations to dealers. You`ll see what I mean.
Read on and enjoy!

IMG_3001

Record reviews

david-bowie-young-americans-cd

DAVID BOWIE-Young Americans, RCA APL 1-0998.

David Bowie is back with his latest musical look, this time an excursion into the land of soul. It works well. The key here is that Bowie’s sophisticated soul sound (with strings, big arrangements and lots of soulful backup voices) does not sound the least bit put on. He sounds as at home here as he has in all his other musical changes, and in parts, more so. The vocals do not sound nearly as strained as they have on some of his more raucous rockers, nor do they sound as camp. Guest artists John Lennon, Willy Weeks, Andy Newmark and Jean Millington add a fine touch to the set, which should not only endear Bowie even more to his current fans but should open up an entirely new avenue of fans for him. Expect soul play on this set, for he is truly handling the music, not copying. Some non-soul oriented cuts are also included.
Best cuts: “Young Americans,” “Fascination,” “Right,” “Across The Universe,” “Can You Hear Me.”
Dealers: Bowie is one of the major superstars in pop. All you have to do is display the set.

Alice

ALICE COOPER-Welcome To My Nightmare, Atlantic SD 18130.

Solo set from Alice is by far the best musical project he has yet undertaken. LP is soundtrack to upcoming TV special, and is vastly different in parts from his group efforts, but similar enough to retain old fans. Fine use of horns and strong arrangements throughout, as well as the powerful metallic sound (Dick Wagner on guitar) and razor sharp vocals Alice is associated with. More universally appealing than previous LPs, with the vocals simply better than on recent LPs, the arrangements more interesting and sophisticated and the package more commercial. There’s a John Lennon type song here that is beautifully arranged and sung, some material reminiscent of “School’s Out,” and a variety of other things. Alice has always been recognized as a masterful rocker, but we see here there is far more to him than that. He proves himself able to handle many kinds of music, though the rock is still dominant. A truly superb effort.
Best cuts: “Devil’s Food,” “Some Folks,” “Only Women Bleed” (the Lennon styled cut), “Department Of Youth” (like “School’s Out “), “Cold Ethyl.” “Steven” (a truly frightening piece of rock theater), “Escape.”
Dealers: First new product in over a year from this superstar, and he and his group are set for an 80-city world tour this spring.

Kansas

KANSAS-Song For America, Kirshner PZ 33385 (CBS).

The group whose debut LP caught a lot of people by surprise with strong sales offers a much stronger effort this time around, mixing the kind of synthesizer oriented /harmonic vocal sounds that characterize groups like Yes with some more standard sounding blues-oriented rock and a touch of country added to both, courtesy of an electric violin. The long, electronic cuts lend themselves best to FM exposure. The mix of electronics and more familiar rock is a clever one which should broaden the base appeal of the band, and while there are touches of several other groups here, the set is undoubtedably the property of Kansas.
Best cuts: “Song For America,” “Lamplight Symphony,” “Lonely Street,” “The Devil Game.”
Dealers: Band built a loyal and strong following with first effort and this is a musically superior set. Expect this to be a big album.

Argent

ARGENT-Circus, Epic PE 33422 (CBS).

Back within several months of their charted live LP, veteran British rockers change format a bit and move from the metallic rock they are best known for to a concept type LP that is dominated by Rod Argent’s work on a variety of keyboard instruments and solo and harmony vocals that dart in and out of long instrumental solos. A general feeling of “flow” throughout the LP featured by the Yes school of bands. The change for Argent works well, for they are skilled musicians and vocalists, and the concept is present without being overbearing. Set should surprise fans, but will not alienate them. Several ballads help break up the LP’s general focus. FM should be the launching pad here.
Best cuts: “Highwire,” “Trapeze,” “Shine On Sunshine,” “Clown.”
Dealers: Another band with a strong following. You might want to display this with first solo effort of departed guitarist Russ Ballard, also on Epic.

ARTICLE ABOUT Ken Hensley FROM SOUNDS, May 31, 1975

Ken Hensley was an very important figure in the earliest incarnation of Uriah Heep. Without him I`m not sure they would have become as great as they did. But, then again, being a great and important band member doesn`t necessarily mean that you will do success as an solo artist. The sum of the parts and all that…
There is nothing wrong with this album, but I agree with the reviewer in that it lacks the originality to keep your attention. A Box or a Byron would have spiced things up in my opinion.
Read on.

IMG_2946

Ken Hensley: `Eager To Please` (Bronze ILPS 9307) (37.00).

Record review by Pete Makowski

There is no doubt that this is an improvement on Hensley`s debut offering, `Proud Words On A Dusty Shelf`. It`s a more relaxed confident effort that shows a melodic side to Uriah Heep`s keyboardsman. It still contains some of the dramatic musical intensity that is prominent in Heep`s music but that`s about the only similarity detectable. Here Hensley is backed by ex-Heep bassist Mark Clarke, a very capable musician who holds back or lets forth when necessary. Clarke has also contributed one of the compositions, `In The Morning`, which is easily the best song on the album. It`s screaming with commercial potential, bouncing along merrily with some soulful sax from Ray Warleigh. The closest competitors to this are `Eager To Please` and `Winter Or Summer` which ride on a backbone of brash chord work and strong harmonies. Hensley seems to write his material around the limitations of his voice which is powerful but not very versatile. Drummer Bugs Remberton holds tight with Clarke`s bass playing which anchors the solidity and strength of the band`s sound. Hensley`s repertoire is varied from the heavily orchestrated almost schmaltzy tones of `How Shall I Know?` and the floaty acoustic ballad `The House On The Hill` to the brash supercharged humdingers like `Stargazer`. It`s a shame that Hensley doesn`t explore his keyboard playing a little more. The album could have done with some more guest guitarists, competent as Hensley is, his playing doesn`t have enough style, individuality or originality to keep your attention. A fair offering.

Hensley

I have personally transcribed this from the original paper. Any errors in the text from the original magazine may not have been corrected for the sake of accuracy. If you have a music-related web-page where this fits – please make a link to the article. With credits to the original writer of the article from all of us music fans!
The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!
1. Send me an e-mail if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
2. The offer should be 20 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.

ARTICLE ABOUT Journey FROM SOUNDS, April 26, 1975

I am afraid that the reviewer hit the nail fairly right on the head with this one. Journey started out with an album that didn`t exactly set the world on fire. This album is never mentioned in any top 100 albums in rock or hard rock for a reason. I think it would be lucky to even end up in a Top 1000 poll. But in the interest of history, here is the original record review.
Read on.

IMG_2731

Album Review:

Journey: `Journey` (CBS 80724).

By Rob Mackie

A couple of ex-Santana journeymen meet up with the mighty biceps of Aynsley Dunbar and the result is kind of predictable. The drumming is as dynamic as ever, coming over as the dominant instrument at times. On occasions, the interplay with a spacey lead guitar can suggest the understanding of McLaughlin and Cobham, but Journey seem to have a far less clear idea of where they`re headed than the Mahavishnu had. Too often there`s no centre to this band – the musical ability is there all right, but the vocals and the singing sound equally muzzy and unappealing. Attempting a spacey concept, Journey come over sounding a little old-fashioned. Competent. Uninspired.

Journey_self_titled

I have personally transcribed this from the original paper. Any errors in the text from the original magazine may not have been corrected for the sake of accuracy. If you have a music-related web-page where this fits – please make a link to the article. With credits to the original writer of the article from all of us music fans!

This number of Sounds also contains articles/interviews with these people: Frank Zappa, Gladys Knight, Women In Rock, Betty Wright, Steve Harley, Peter Frampton, Labelle, Peter Skellern, Ray Davies, Larry Uttal, Chris Spedding, Anne Murray, Sweet Sensation, Bernard Purdie, Mike Harding, Ronnie Lane, Yes.

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!
1. Send me an e-mail if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
2. The offer should be 20 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.