Supergroups rarely last a long time. The combination of various egos usually leads to burnout pretty quickly. In the case of Blackthorne (featuring Graham Bonnet along with members of Quiet Riot, House of Lords and Skull), there wasn’t really anything you’d call genuine longevity, but their course ran a little longer than most. Formed in 1991, they released their debut ‘Afterlife’ in 1993 which led to some success in Japan. Work on a second album was undertaken in the mid-90s, but the band called it a day before the record was ready for release. The tapes remained unreleased until HNE Recordings unearthed them as part of their extensive (and excellent) Graham Bonnet reissue campaign. It’s a shame Blackthorne’s proposed second album couldn’t be heard in 1995, as at least half of it was an improvement over their first release.
Having already released ‘Afterlife’ with a handful of bonus tracks and finally gettiing ‘Blackthorne II: Don’t Kill The Thrill’ out to the fans in 2016, you’d expect that Cherry Red/HNE Recordings would have nothing more to give from Blackthorne’s all too short career, but this compilation (released in October 2019) actually adds a lot more to the band’s recorded legacy. Not so much a career overview with a few unreleased trinkets, this set is actually a vault of demos and alternate takes, peppered with a few album cuts to give a fairer overview of their short life span. Presented among the 44 tracks in this set are 30 unreleased cuts, a couple of which go right back to the band’s origins when the rhythm section featured White Lion men James Lomenzo and Greg D’Angelo. In other words, there’s a huge amount for fans to get their ears around.
Hendrix’s Band of Gypsys concerts have become the stuff of legend. Fans have been given various highlights into their four Fillmore shows from 1969/70, but now the picture is to be completed with the release of a lavish new box set, ‘Songs For Groovy Children’.
Following the dissolution of the Jimi Hendrix Experience after just three albums, Hendrix formed a new group with Buddy Miles on drums and his old army pal Billy Cox taking on bass duties. The Band of Gypsys made their debut at The Fillmore East on New Years Eve 1969. That day, they played two shows; two further shows followed on New Years Day.
The last few years have been a treat for fans of 70s prog band Gentle Giant. A few of their albums have been remixed by the legendary Steven Wilson and given the 5.1 treatment, while elsewhere, the vaults have been raided for huge amounts of demo and live material.
Following last year’s multi-disc box set of ‘Brave’, Marillion are now gearing up to release the follow up (and fan favourite) ‘Afraid of Sunlight’ in a similar configuration.
While the band are playing their cards very close to their collective chests in terms of actual details, they have revealed that the blu ray will include various mixes of the album along with all of the bonus materials from the previous 2CD set…and SEVENTEEN unreleased tracks.