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Most of this blog is related in some way to the music, books and films produced by Gonzo Multimedia, but the editor has a grasshopper mind and so also writes about all sorts of cultural issues which interest him, and which he hopes will interest you as well.

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

JACK BRUCE – SILVER RAILS (ALBUM REVIEW)

jackbrucealbumSince the dissolution of Cream in 1968, Jack Bruce has released a stylistic array of albums delving into the rock, jazz and classical genres he touched upon as a member of that seminal power trio. The personnel he has enlisted for his latest release, Silver Rails, is representative of that eclectic approach. They, along with the multi-instrumentalist/composer/vocalist himself, integrate the genres in a complementary fashion similar to Bruce’s writing collaborations.
Recording at Abbey Road Studios in London, no doubt accounts for the splendid clarity and depth of the sound here and it almost distracts from the unusually low-key start of “Candlelight” with its reggae rhythm accented by horns. The forlorn air of that song’s lyrics continues thru much of Silver Rails, but with “Reach for the Night,” the mood becomes incrementally brighter with each successive track. Written with well-known lyricist Pete Brown, “Fields of Forever” reads particularly autobiographical and is further noteworthy as one of the few tracks here without the deceptively unobtrusive participation of keyboardist John Medeski, with Bruce a co-member of the Tony Williams tribute band Spectrum Road.
Drummer Cindy Blackman Santana also partnered in that ensemble and she sits at the kit on one of the more compact arrangements here, the hard-hitting quartet alignment of “No Surrender.” In marked contrast, Santana also aids Medeski in deftly maintaining both the odd time signature and ambiance conjured up with the presence of multiple vocalists on “Hidden Cites;” A tribute to Rob Cass’ production savvy that the esoteric atmosphere on that cut comes to a clearly-defined conclusion and that it’s followed by the comparatively straightforward “Don’t Look Now,” where Bruce’s familiar falsetto voice makes its debut; here too Medeski’s organ and Mellotron complements the leader’s dominant piano playing
Rope Ladder To The Moon
DVD - £9.99

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