Mahavishnu Orchestra – Mahavishnu (1984)

FrontCover1Mahavishnu Orchestra was an American jazz fusion band formed in New York City in 1971, by the English guitarist John McLaughlin. The band underwent several line-up changes throughout its history across two stints from 1971 to 1976 and 1984 to 1987.[2] With its first line-up consisting of musicians Billy Cobham, Jan Hammer, Jerry Goodman and Rick Laird, the band received its initial acclaims for its complex, intense music consisting of a blend of Indian classical music, jazz and psychedelic rock, and their dynamic live performances between 1971 and 1973.

Mahavishnu is an album by the Mahavishnu Orchestra, released in 1984 by Warner Bros. Records. During the 1980s, John McLaughlin reformed the Mahavishnu Orchestra for release of the two albums Mahavishnu and Adventures in Radioland. This band’s overall sound was radically different from the original Mahavishnu Orchestra, in particular because of McLaughlin’s extensive use of the Synclavier synthesiser system. This album features original Mahavishnu Orchestra drummer Billy Cobham. (by wikipedia)

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1984’s Mahavishnu was supposed to mark the return of drummer Billy Cobham to John McLaughlin’s side. Although the reunion ended badly behind the scenes, the record did manage to display some of the historic interplay these musician’s had shared in the past. The album does suffer from a lack of focus which could be blamed on McLaughlin’s new guitar synthesizer, which he tended to use too much. Many times the listener is not aware John is even playing because the damn synth didn’t sound like a guitar at all ! But again, John was in the forefront of the technology at the time and his indulging can be forgiven. He would eventually find his voices on his acoustic-synth trio outings.

Mahavishnu consisted of Miles’ sax man Bill Evans, outrageous bassist Jonas Helborg, brilliant keyboardest Mitchel Forman and an ever-developing Danny Gottlieb, replacing Cobham on tour, on drums. This band would not realize its full potential until Adventures In Radioland.

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Still, Mahavishnu offers “Clarendon Hills”, a tune penned by Evans, which is a full-out sonic attack which is among the best compositions McLaughlin has ever recorded. Katia LaBeque, ex-girlfriend of John McLaughlin and wonderful pianist, once again adds her talents and very effectively so on the Indian piece “When Blue Turns Gold” which brings the album to a droning close. For those of you able to obtain this record, remember… “Too dark. Use flash”. (Walter Kolosky)

This album somehow seems to have offended the gods, in as much as it garnered fairly poor reviews and often seems to be omitted from the discographies of both John McLaughlin AND the Mahavishnu Orchestra. My personal view is that the disdain is undeserved.

Whilst the keyboard and guitar sounds make it very much of its time, the solid rhythm section of Billy Cobham and Jonas Hellborg mostly keep it driving along, and there are some beautiful moments along the way.

Personal favourite tracks are: the opener, “Radio-Activity”, which combines typically liquid lines from McLaughlin and saxophonist Bill Evans with some fiery work from Cobham on double bass drum; the second track, “Nostalgia”, which is a moody and contemplative ballad; and the penultimate track, “Pacific Express”, which sees McLaughlin in his usual rapid-fire mode.

All in all, it’s an album I return to every year or two, and I’m always reminded how much I like it! (by Patrick Moore)

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Personnel:
Billy Cobham (drums, percussion)
Bill Evans (saxophone, flute)
Mitchel Forman – Fender Rhodes, Yamaha DX7, Yamaha “Blow Torch” Piano on “Clarendon Hills”
Jonas Hellborg (bass)
John McLaughlin (guitar, synclavier II, digital guitar)
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Hari Prasad Chaurasia -(flute on 09.)
Danny Gottlieb (percussion)
Zakir Hussain (tabla on 09.)
Katia Labeque (synthesizer, piano on 09.)

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Tracklist:
01. Radio-Activity 6.47
02. Nostalgia 5.56
03. Nightriders 3.45
04. East Side West Side 4.47
05. Clarendon Hills 6.04
06. Jazz 1.43
07. The Unbeliever 2.47
08. Pacific Express 6.23
09. When Blue Turns Gold 3.15

Music compsoed by John McLaughlin,
except 05, which was written by Bill Evans

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More from The Mahavishnu Orchestra:
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Sammy Davis Jr. – Closest Of Friends (1984)

FrontCover1.JPGSamuel George Davis Jr. (December 8, 1925 – May 16, 1990) was an American singer, musician, dancer, actor, vaudevillian, comedian and activist known for his impressions of actors, musicians and other celebrities. At age three, Davis Jr. began his career in vaudeville with his father Sammy Davis Sr. and the Will Mastin Trio, which toured nationally.

After military service, Davis Jr. returned to the trio and became an overnight sensation following a nightclub performance at Ciro’s (in West Hollywood) after the 1951 Academy Awards. With the trio, he became a recording artist. In 1954, at the age of 29, he lost his left eye in a car accident. Several years later, he converted to Judaism, finding commonalities between the oppression experienced by African-American and Jewish communities.

After a starring role on Broadway in Mr Wonderful (1956), he returned to the stage in 1964’s Golden Boy.

Davis Jr.’s film career began as a child in 1933. In 1960, he appeared in the Rat Pack film Ocean’s 11.

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In 1966, he had his own TV variety show, titled The Sammy Davis Jr. Show. While Davis’ career slowed in the late 1960s, he did have a hit record with “The Candy Man” in 1972 and became a star in Las Vegas, earning him the nickname “Mister Show Business”.

Davis had a complex relationship with the black community and drew criticism after publicly supporting President Richard Nixon in 1972. One day on a golf course with Jack Benny, he was asked what his handicap was. “Handicap?” he asked. “Talk about handicap. I’m a one-eyed Negro Jew.” This was to become a signature comment, recounted in his autobiography and in many articles.

After reuniting with Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin in 1987, Davis toured with them and Liza Minnelli internationally, before his death in 1990. He died in debt to the Internal Revenue Service,[8] and his estate was the subject of legal battles. Davis Jr. was awarded the Spingarn Medal by the NAACP and was nominated for a Golden Globe Award and an Emmy Award for his television performances.

He was the recipient of the Kennedy Center Honors in 1987, and in 2001, he was posthumously awarded the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2017, he was inducted into the Rhythm & Blues Hall of Fame for being the Greatest Entertainer in the World, said founder Lamont “ShowBoat” Robinson. (by wikipedia)

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In 1982, Sammy Davis, Jr. made the musical move to Nashville. Perhaps the last place you would expect the diminutive wonder to turn up, but he cut ten songs there for the Applause label and the Closest of Friends album was the result. The songs assembled for Davis to sing come from some of the finest writers the town had to offer (“Oh Lonesome Me” by Don Gibson, “Come Sundown” and “Please Don’t Tell Me How the Story Ends” by Kris Kristofferson, “Smoke Smoke Smoke (That Cigarette)” by Tex Williams and Merle Travis) and while the aging Sammy did what he could vocally, the wooden arrangements and pedestrian playing really bring the album down.

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The best of the songs, like Sammy’s light bounce through “Hey, Won’t You Play (Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song)” and his knowing take on “Smoke Smoke Smoke (That Cigarette)” (which contains the cruelly foreshadowing lyric “I’ve smoked ’em all my life and I ain’t dead yet”) are miles away from his best work and have only the slightest glimmer of what made Davis so spectacular in his prime. Only a true Davis fanatic would ever want to hear these songs. It was one of his last forays into a recording studio and should probably just be forgotten. Unfortunately, it is one of the few Davis sessions that turns up time and time again on cheap reissue labels, often with mis-leading titles and cover shots. (by Tim Sendra)

In other words: A Sammy Davis trip into this sentimental Country music …

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Personnel:
Larry Butler (piano)
James Capps (guitar)
Jerry Carrigan (drums)
Stebve Chapman (guitar)
Sammy Davis Jr. (vocals)
Ray Edenton (guitar)
Bob Moore (bass)
Leon Rhodes (bass)
Hargus Robbins (piano)
Bily Sanford (guitar)
Jerry Shook (guitar)
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Sheldon Kurland Strings

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Tracklist:
01. What I’ve Got In Mind (O´Dell) 2.48
02. Come Sundown (Kristofferson) 3.22
03. Mention A Mansion (Hupp/Morrison) 2.19
04. You’re Gonna Love Yourself (In The Morning) (Fritts) 3.15
05. Smoke, Smoke, Smoke (That Cigarette) (Travis/Williams) 3.03
06. Oh Lonesome Me (Gibson) 2.24
07. We Could Have Been Closest Of Friends (Pippin/Slade) 3.15
08. Hey Won’t You Play (Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song) (Buitler/Moman) 3.23
09. Please Don’t Tell Me How The Story Ends (Kristofferson) 3.25
10. The River’s Too Wide (Morrison) 2.43

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Samuel George Davis Jr. (December 8, 1925 – May 16, 1990)

 

I got this album from greygoose … thanks a lot !!!

Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble – Live At Carnegie Hall (1997)

FrontCover1.jpgLive at Carnegie Hall is the ninth album (and third live album) by American blues rock band Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble, released by Epic Records in July 1997. The album consists of live selections from their sold-out October 4, 1984 benefit concert at Carnegie Hall for the T.J. Martell Foundation. Backed by a ten-piece big band for the second half of the event, Vaughan had celebrated his thirtieth birthday the night before, and called the concert his “best birthday ever, forever”. The band’s double-set performance, which included several blues and R&B standards, was highly successful, receiving mostly positive reviews from music critics.

Initially ranked as the top blues album of 1997, Live at Carnegie Hall peaked at number 40 on the Billboard 200, where it spent twelve weeks on the chart. The album was S.T.W01.jpgultimately certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) after selling over half a million units. Guests on the album include Vaughan’s brother Jimmie Vaughan (guitar), Dr. John (keyboards), George Rains (drums) and the Roomful of Blues horn section, along with vocalist Angela Strehli. Related to the album, two outtakes from the concert were released on the SRV box set in November 2000.

The album charted at #40 on the Billboard 200, and was the #1 blues album for eight weeks. Entertainment Weekly said that his “blistering fretwork is so technically formidable that it should awe even the most unflappable aficionados.” Stephen Holden from The New York Times described the concert itself as “a stomping roadhouse.” (by wikipedia)

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Live at Carnegie Hall captures Stevie Ray Vaughan on the supporting tour for his second album, 1984’s Couldn’t Stand the Weather. The Carnegie Hall concert was a special show, since it was the only time Vaughan and Double Trouble added the brass section from Roomful of Blues to augment their sound; in addition, the concert featured guest appearances from Stevie’s brother Jimmie and Dr. John. There might have been more musicians than usual on-stage, but Stevie Ray remains the center of attention, and he is in prime form here, tearing through a selection of his best-known songs which generally sound tougher in concert than they do in the studio. It’s the best live Stevie Ray record yet released. (by Thom Owens)

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Personnel:
Chris Layton (drums)
Tommy Shannon (bass)
Stevie Ray Vaughan (guitar, vocals)
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Porky Cohen (trombone)
Bob Enos (trumpet)
Dr. John (keyboards)
Doug James (saxophone)
Rich Lataille (saxophone)
Greg Piccolo (saxophone)
George Rains (drums)
Angela Strehli (vocals on 10.)
Jimmie Vaughan (guitar)

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Tracklist:
01. Scuttle Buttin’ (S.R.Vaughan) 2.43
02. Testify (R.Isley/K.Isley, Jr./R.Isley) 5.20
03. Love Struck Baby (S.R.Vaughan) 3.05
04. Honey Bee (S.R.Vaughan) 3.05
05. Cold Shot (Kindred/Clark) 4.45
06. Letter To My Girlfriend (Jones) 3.08
07. Dirty Pool (Bramhall/Vaughan) 6.40
08. Pride And Joy (S.R.Vaughan) 4.48
09. The Things That I Used To Do (Jones) 5.26
10. C.O.D. (Gooden) 5.32
11. Iced Over (aka “Collins’ Shuffle”) (Collins/S.R.Vaughan) 5.11
12. Lenny (S.R.Vaughan) 7.14
13. Rude Mood (S.R.Vaughan) 2.22

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Stephen Ray Vaughan (October 3, 1954 – August 27, 1990)

Big Country – Wonderland (Special Limited Edition) (1984)

FrontCover1.jpgBig Country are a Scottish rock band formed in Dunfermline, Fife, in 1981.

The height of the band’s popularity was in the early to mid 1980s, although it retained a cult following for many years after. The band’s music incorporated Scottish folk and martial music styles, and the band engineered their guitar-driven sound to evoke the sound of bagpipes, fiddles and other traditional folk instruments.
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Big Country comprised Stuart Adamson (formerly of Skids, vocals/guitar/keyboards), Bruce Watson (guitar/mandolin/sitar/vocals), Tony Butler (bass guitar/vocals) and Mark Brzezicki (drums/percussion/vocals). Before the recruitment of Butler and Brzezicki an early incarnation of Big Country was a five-piece band, featuring Peter Wishart (later of Runrig and now a Scottish National Party MP) on keyboards, his brother Alan on bass, and Clive Parker, drummer from Spizz Energi/Athletico Spizz ’80. Parker had approached Adamson to join his new band after the demise of Skids.

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Adamson auditioned Parker (1980) at The Members’ rehearsal room in Ladbroke Grove, London and the next day was called on to play drums on demos for CBS Records at their Whitfield Street studios. The demos were produced by Adam Sieff and just featured Adamson, Parker and Watson. Adamson had asked bassist Dave Allen from Gang of Four to join the band but he declined. Adamson asked Parker to join the band, which led to eight months of rehearsal in Dunfermline in a disused furniture warehouse.

The culmination was a concert at the Glen Pavilion at Dunfermline and an interview with BBC Radio Scotland where the CBS Studio demos were utilised. The band then played live with Alice Cooper’s Special Forces tour for two concerts in 1982 at The Brighton Centre.

Butler and Brzezicki, working under the name ‘Rhythm for Hire,’ were brought in to play on “Harvest Home.” They immediately hit it off with Adamson and Watson, who invited them to join the band.

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Big Country’s first single was “Harvest Home”, recorded and released in 1982. It was a modest success, although it did not reach the official UK Singles Chart. Their next single was 1983’s “Fields Of Fire (400 Miles)”, which reached the UK’s Top Ten and was rapidly followed by the album The Crossing. The album was a hit in the United States (reaching the Top 20 in the Billboard 200), powered by “In a Big Country”, their only US Top 40 hit single. The song featured heavily engineered guitar playing, strongly reminiscent of bagpipes; Adamson and fellow guitarist, Watson, achieved this through the use of the MXR Pitch Transposer 129 Guitar Effect. Also contributing to the band’s unique sound was their use of the e-bow, a device which allows a guitar to sound more like strings or synthesizer. The Crossing sold over a million copies in the UK and obtained gold record status (sales of over 500,000) in the US. The band performed at the Grammy Awards and on Saturday Night Live.

Big Country released the non-LP extended play single “Wonderland” in 1984 while in the middle of a lengthy worldwide tour. The song, considered by some critics to be one of their finest, was a Top Ten hit (No. 8) in the UK Singles Chart[2] but, despite heavy airplay and a positive critical response, was a comparative flop in the US, reaching only No. 86 on the Billboard Hot 100. It was the last single by the band to make the US charts. (by wikipedia)

And here´s is of their many “Special Edition” singles from the Eighties:

Booklet03A.jpg“Wonderland” and “Giant (one of their rare Insrumentals; it was the instrumental version of “All Fall Together”)  … not released on their second album “Steel Town” and “Lost Patrol” recoded live at their legendary New Year´s Eve Concert at Barrowland, Glosgow 1993/1994.

So, here´s another cance to discover “Big Country”, one of the finest bands from the Eighties … Listen and enjoy !

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Personnel:
Stuart Adamson (guitar, vocals)
Mark Brzezicki (drums)
Tony Butler (bass)
Bruce Watson (guitar)

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Tracklist:
01. Wonderland 3.51
02. Giant 5.12
03. Lost Patrol (live) Part 1) 2.27
04. Lost Patrol (live) Part 2) 2.26

All songs written by Stuart Adamson – Mark Brzezicki – Tony Butler – Bruce Watson

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Adamson returned for the band’s ‘Final Fling’ farewell tour, culminating in a sold-out concert at Glasgow’s Barrowland Ballroom on 31 May 2000. They played what turned out to be their last gig in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, in October that year.

In November 2001, Adamson disappeared again. Numerous appeals were put on the Big Country website asking for Adamson to call home and speak to anyone in the band, the management company, or his ex-wife. The website also requested that any fans who might have been ‘harbouring’ the singer to contact the management company and alert them to his whereabouts. Mark Brzezicki and Tony Butler had indicated they were concerned but the reason Big Country had lasted so long was they stayed out of one another’s personal lives, and both later noted they were unaware of the extent of Adamson’s problems. He was found dead in a room at the Best Western Plaza Hotel in Honolulu, Hawaii on 16 December 2001. (by wikipedia)

More from Big Country:

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David Gilmour – About Face (1984)

LPFrontCover1About Face is the second solo studio album by the English musician David Gilmour. It was released in March 1984 by Harvest in the UK and Columbia in the United States. Co-produced by Bob Ezrin and Gilmour, the album was recorded in 1983 at Pathé Marconi Studio, in Boulogne-Billancourt, France. The lyrics of two tracks, “All Lovers Are Deranged” and “Love on the Air,” were written by Pete Townshend of the Who.

The album received positive reviews and peaked at #21 on UK Albums Chart and #32 on the US Billboard 200. Two singles were released: “Blue Light” peaked at #62 in the United States, while “Love on the Air” failed to chart. The album was certified gold by the RIAA. A remastered reissue was released in 2006 on EMI.

The album was recorded with engineer Andy Jackson at a time when Pink Floyd’s future was uncertain. It was mixed by James Guthrie at Mayfair Studios in London, England.

Gilmour said he wanted to take his time and make “a really good album” and “get the best musicians in the world that I could get hold of to play with me.”[8] Musicians on the album include drummer Jeff Porcaro, bass guitarist Pino Palladino, Deep Purple keyboardist Jon Lord, backing vocalists Roy Harper, and Sam Brown, orchestral arranger Michael Kamen (who had also worked on The Pros and Cons of Hitch Hiking and The Wall), and keyboardist Steve Winwood.

Gilmour01I think Pete feels some restrictions on what he would like to do with the Who, as I guess we all feel restrictions within everything we attempt [to do], just because of the types of personalities and role you’ve created for yourself. I know he’s felt uncomfortable about certain things— things he could express in solo stuff. For me, the restriction was the scale of what Pink Floyd had become more than anything. It’s nice to get out and do something on a slightly different scale; go out and do theatres, which is not really a possibility with Pink Floyd until we get a lot less popular. (David Gilmour)

When Roger Waters began production of the Pink Floyd album, The Final Cut, Gilmour claims, he requested Waters wait another month for Gilmour to develop some musical ideas himself, but Waters felt he was “on a roll” and already had plenty of material to complete the album, a very personal project about his father’s death in World War II, and the further victimization of those who survived it. Waters, seeing Gilmour and Mason’s lack of interest in the concept, offered to make The Final Cut as a solo album, but Gilmour and Mason still wanted a Pink Floyd album, of any kind, to sell. “[T]hey know [that] songs don’t grow on trees,” Waters told David Fricke of Rolling Stone magazine. “They wanted it to be a Floyd record.”

Gilmour was later interviewed by Texas-based DJ Redbeard, on the radio program, In the Studio during which the focus was his 2006 third album On an Island. He commented on About Face saying that, “looking back on it, it has some great moments on there but the whole flavor of it is too ’80s for my current tastes.”

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“Murder” was an outcry by Gilmour about the senseless killing of John Lennon, a longtime musical peer and inspiration to him. Gilmour embellished the song with a solo fretless bassline (played by Pino Palladino), adding an edgy funk groove to the acoustic beginning of the song, leading to an instrumental bridge, where the song picks up in the speed of the beat with more electric instruments. Gilmour collaborated with Townshend on the songs “Love on the Air” and “All Lovers Are Deranged,” as Gilmour recalled: “I sent him three songs and he sent back three sets of lyrics. Two of them suited me well. One didn’t. He did the two on About Face and he did the other one [‘White City Fighting’] on his White City album.” The lyrics for “Love on the Air” were written in a day, after Gilmour had asked for Townshend’s help. “You Know I’m Right” was written in a similar vein to Lennon’s “How Do You Sleep?” and was a dig towards to Waters.”Cruise” was about Ronald Reagan having cruise missiles stationed in Britain at the time.

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The cover of the LP is a little wider than usual, approaching 12 1/2 inches. The inner sleeve bears lyrics and photographs of Gilmour, and exists in at least two variations. A sleeve for the UK Harvest edition has rounded corners and opens to the side; one for the USA Columbia edition has square corners and opens to the top, relative to the lyric text. Like the cover, the latter sleeve is wider than it is tall, and may not fit into the outer sleeve if turned 90 degrees. In one corner of both versions are printed the words “Fleudian slip,” a play on the words “Freudian slip” and “Pink Floyd.” (by wikipedia)

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David Gilmour released his second solo venture in 1984, following the apparent dissolution of Pink Floyd. He had released a record on his own in 1978, but About Face is much more accessible. Gilmour has a stellar band backing him, including Jeff Porcaro (drums), Pino Palladino (bass), and Anne Dudley (synthesizer). The songs on About Face show a pop sensibility that Pink Floyd rarely was concerned with achieving. Although the album didn’t attract the attention of a Floyd release, several cuts did manage to get airplay. “Until We Sleep” is rife with shimmering synthesizers and cavernous drums, and “Blue Light” was a minor pop hit, with Gilmour’s trademark delay-drenched guitar giving way to a driving, horn-laced rocker. Pete Townshend wrote two of the tracks: “Love on the Air” and the propulsive “All Lovers Are Deranged.” Of course, there’s more than enough of Gilmour’s fluid guitar playing to satisfy, including the gorgeous “Murder,” a gentle acoustic track that explodes with some fiery organ by Steve Winwood and concludes with a fierce coda. About Face is well-honed rock album that is riveting from beginning to end. (by Tom Demalon)

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Personnel:
David Gilmour (vocals, guitar, bass)
Ian Kewley (keyboards)
Pino Palladino (bass)
Jeff Porcaro (drums, percussion)
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Ray Cooper (percussion)
Anne Dudley (synthesiser)
Bob Ezrin (keyboards)
Luís Jardim (percussion)
Jon Lord (synthesiser)
Steve Rance (Fairlight CMI programming)
Steve Winwood (organ on 04., piano on 03.)
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The Kick Horns (brass)
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background vocals
Roy Harper – Sam Brown – Vicki Brown – Mickey Feat
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The National Philharmonic Orchestra conducted Michael Kamen

CDBooklet.jpgTracklist:
01. Until We Sleep (Gilmour) 5.18
02. Murder (Gilmour) 5.01
03. Love On The Air (Gilmour/Townshend) 4.21
04. Blue Light (Gilmour) 4.38
05. Out Of The Blue (Gilmour) 3.38
06. All Lovers Are Deranged (Gilmour/Townshend) 3.17
07. You Know I’m Right (Gilmour) 5.08
08. Cruise (Gilmour) 4.42
09. Let’s Get Metaphysical (Gilmour) 4.12
10. Near The End (Gilmour) 5.36

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Gary Moore – We Want Moore (1984)

FrontCover1.jpgWe Want Moore! is a live album by Irish guitarist Gary Moore, released in 1984.

This album is a jaw-dropping affair for anyone who believes that Eddie Van Halen is the ultimate guitar-shredding experience. Gary Moore’s classic live album We Want Moore! is about as good as it gets. Drawing mainly from the Irish guitarist’s previous two studio albums, every cut gets a shot in the arm from Moore’s extended soloing, most notably the Yardbird’s “Shapes of Things” at almost nine minutes. Recorded in places as distant as Tokyo, Glasgow and Detroit, the performances also benefit from the impressive vocal tag team between Moore and rhythm guitarist Neil Carter. (by Eduardo Rivadavia)

“We Want Moore” is Gary Moore’s first official live album to be available worldwide (Rockin’ Every Night was initially only available in Japan) and is not only a superb live album but also one of the strongest albums he has ever recorded. It is clear from the off that Moore is keen to show off his metallic side with album opener Murder In The Skies, which was one of the standout tracks from his brilliant Victims Of The Future album and remains one of the heaviest tracks he has ever recorded. Although the guitarist isn’t GaryMoore1exactly a natural vocalist, his vocals are more than adequate for the job in hand and are reasonably consistent throughout this live album. In fact it wouldn’t be too much of a stretch to say that his vocals actually sound better at times here than they did on his two previous studio albums, however keyboard player and rhythm guitarist Neil Carter does take over on lead vocals on occasion.

Moore’s take on The Yardbirds classic Shapes Of Things follows on from the energy of the album’s opener and features a truly breathtaking extended guitar solo, which shows that Moore’s guitar skills are right up there with the greats.

Following a blistering performance of the title track from his previous album, Victims Of The Future, Cold Hearted marks the albums first song from 1982’s Corridors Of Power and is possibly one of the bluesiest tracks on the album and hints towards Moore’s later days as a blues guitarist/singer. This version of Cold Hearted also incorporates an extended version of the intro to the next song, the epic End Of The World. End Of The World, also from the Corridors Of Power album is quite possibly one of the best songs he GaryMoore2has ever recorded and features some truly jaw-dropping guitar playing particularly during the intro. This live version certainly does the song justice, there’s just one thing missing from the studio version; Jack Bruce’s vocals. Former Cream member Jack Bruce, who provided lead vocals for the original version of the song, unfortunately does not make a guest appearance on this album, however, between them, Gary Moore and Neil Carter manage to do a good job of the vocals and this version is energetic, dramatic and overall a fine performance of a truly great metal song.

Back On The Streets, with it’s sing-a-long chorus, provides a bit of light-hearted relief following the darker, heavier sound of the previous song and is one of only two songs on the album not taken from either Corridors Of Power or Victims Of The Future. This is followed by the emotional ballad, Empty Rooms, before Moore and his boys launch back into much heavier territory with the opening track from Corridors Of Power, Don’t Take Me For A Loser.

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Closing track, Rockin’ And Rollin’ is the only track on the album taken from 1980’s G-Force album and is a great way to close the album, the song features a surprising guest appearance from Jimmy Nail, who, in Gary Moore’s words, gives the crowd “a singing lesson”. All this leaves you and evidently the crowd wanting mo(o)re…

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Overall this is an astonishingly good live album by a criminally underrated musician and like Moore himself, doesn’t get the recognition it deserves. We Want Moore is the kind of live album that can leave you with a big smile on your face as well as leaving you awestruck by the band’s (and in this case particularly the guitarist’s) technical ability. It is possibly Gary Moore’s best and most consistent heavy metal album, and is a good place to start if you’re looking to get into early to mid 80’s era Gary Moore. This is one of those live albums that makes you wish that you could have been there, but if you weren’t, listening to this is a damn good compromise. (by Jamie Twort)

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Personnel:
Neil Carter (keyboards, guitar, background vocals)
Bobby Chouinard (drums on 01. – 03. + 09.)
Craig Gruber (bass, background vocals)
Gary Moore (vocals, lead guitar)
Ian Paice (drums, percussion on 04. – 08 + 10.)
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Phil Lynott (bass, vocals on 11.)
Jimmy Nail (background vocals on 10.)
Paul Thompson (drums on 11.)

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Tracklist:
01. Murder In The Skies ( Moore/Carter) 5.33
02. Shapes Of Things (Samwell-Smith/Relf/McCarty) 8.14
03. Victims Of The Future (Moore/Carter/Paice/Murray) 8.25
04. Cold Hearted (includes “Majestuoso E Virtuoso” and “White Knuckles” from other concerts) (Moore) 10.24
05. End Of The World (Moore) 4.33
06. Back On The Streets (Moore) 5.21
07. So Far Away (Foster/Russell) 2.39
08. Empty Rooms (Moore/Carter) 8.31
09. Don’t Take Me For A Loser (Moore) 5.43
10. Rockin’ And Rollin’ (Moore/Nauseef) 6.15
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11. Parisienne Walkways (Moore/Lynott) 7.04 (*)

(*) Recorded live at the Ulster Hall, Belfast, Northern Ireland, 17 December 1984

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John Fahey – Let Go (1984)

FrontCover1.jpgLet Go is an album by American fingerstyle guitarist and composer John Fahey, released in 1984. It was his first release on the Varrick label after over 25 years on his own label Takoma, as well as a few releases on other labels.

Since his move to Salem, Oregon in 1981, Fahey met guitarist and producer Terry Robb, who accompanies him on all but three of the songs on Let Go.[1] He would work with Robb on three subsequent releases. Since his final album on Takoma (Railroad) Fahey had signed with Varrick Records, an imprint of Rounder Records. It was to be his first of four releases on the label.

His liner notes distance himself from the folk music label he had had since his career began. The notes begin “No folk music on this record—not even that sounds or suggest folk music… it’s hard to break out of a bag I never intended to be in—never thought I was in… I’m not a Volk. I’m from the suburbs.” He also noted the influence of the Brazilian guitarist Bola Sete. He had commented on Sete’s influence in 1977 in the notes to his guitar transcription book The Best of John Fahey 1959–1977. He did his first cover of a Sete composition on his 1979 album John Fahey Visits Washington D.C..

He had previously recorded the “River Medley” on the 1972 Reprise release Of Rivers and Religion. “Dvorak” is based on themes from Antonín Dvořák Eighth and Ninth symphonies. Regarding the duo’s cover of the Derek and the Dominos song “Layla”, Fahey commented: “Talk about ambition, Chutzpah—that’s us.”

The original LP lists a track titled “Lost Lake”. There was never such a track. (by wikipedia)

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Anyone who has read liner notes on John Fahey albums knows they are not necessarily to be taken as strict truth, but in the case of Let Go, it seems likely that the man was talking straight. Most of the back cover of the LP is a caustic, satirical diatribe against “Volkmusik” fans who try to pigeonhole Fahey as a folk artist. Almost the first words are “No folk music on this record, not even anything that sounds like or suggests folk music.” Fahey almost delivers on that promise on this album of Brazilian jazz, blues, old-time medleys, and other miscellany. In the hands of a guitarist with a less individual style this could have been a chameleon act or a hopeless mishmash, but Fahey pulls it off nicely. Producer and session guitarist Terry Robb duets with him on about half the cuts, and there are sparse but effective bits of percussion and bass that flesh out a vastly superior remake of “River Medle,y which originally appeared on Of Rivers and Religion. Other highlights include the peaceful “The World Is Waiting for the Sunrise and the energetic two-guitar remake of “Layla.” On the latter, Fahey plays Clapton’s bridge note-for-note, but makes it completely his own thanks to his distinctive phrasing. If everything else on this album was trash, that cut would make it worth buying, but thankfully that isn’t the case. Let Go may not be the definitive John Fahey album, but it is a very good one from end to end. (by Richard Foss)

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Personnel:
John Fahey (guitar)
Terry Robb (guitar, bottleneck guitar)
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Ron “Dr.” Manfredo (bass on 05.)
Johnny Riggins (percussion on 05. + 06.)

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Tracklist:
01. Let Go (original title in Portuguese: Canto de Ossanha) (Powell) 6.33
02. Black Mommy (Chargas/Martius) 8.02
03. Dvořák (Traditional) 8.02
04. The World Is Waiting For The Sunrise (Lockhart/Seitz) 2.30
05. River Medley 4.51
05.1. Deep River (Traditional)
05.2. Ol’ Man River (Hammerstein II/Kern)
06. Lights Out (Fahey/Robb) 2.42
07. Pretty Afternoon (Sete) 3.05
08. Sunset On Prince George’s County (Fahey) 4.13
09. Layla (Clapton/Gordon) 5.15
10. Old Country Rock (Traditional) 1.18

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