For most people, British progressive rock band Curved Air are known for two things: being the first band to ever issue a picture disc and for the having the legendary Stewart Copeland having occupy their drum stool in the mid 70s. Considering that vocalist Sonja Kristina had previously been an important part of the London theatre scene in the late sixties – appearing in Hair – and Curved Air actually scored a UK top five hit single in 1971, you’d expect them to be more widely celebrated. Perhaps the reason they aren’t is due to lots of their classically- and jazz-derived music being very hard going. Their earlier work often values complexity over obvious hooks – something that makes the funky ‘Back Street Luv’ single seem like something of an anomaly – and the way they switch between different moods from track to track can, at first, be disorienting. They are very much a band that requires a lot of time and patience before most of the listening rewards become obvious.
A lot of great Marillion shows have been made available on video, DVD and blu ray over the years. Dozens of shows from the 90s onward have been issued via the band’s official website, but fans of Marillion’s formative years have had to make do with just two shows – neither of which show the band at their best.
‘Recital of The Script’, filmed at Hammersmith Odeon in 1983, remains the definitive document of early Marillion despite being hampered by some painfully slow drumming. At the other end of the “Fish Years”, the 1987 festival set ‘Live at Loreley’ shows Marillion seeming rather tired and in need of a little re-invention.
Over the past two years, Marillion have revisited their back-catalogue with the release of several box sets, pairing some much loved albums with live material, demos and much-celebrated 5.1 mixes. Following the release of the ‘Afraid of Sunlight’ box set in 2019, the next installment comes in March 2020 with a lavish reissue of the debut album, ‘Script For A Jester’s Tear’.
A long held fan favourite, the five disc set will include a new stereo mix of the album by Andy Bradfield and Avril Macintosh, a brand new 5.1 mix, a documentary on the making of the album – now heralded as a prog rock classic – and a wealth of early live material.
A full rundown of the contents can be explored below.
In the run up to Christmas, the folks at Cherry Red Records are running a mega sale on selected box set and vinyl items.
As with their Black Friday weekend sale, the discounts are applied to a selection of superb progressive rock titles and classic rock items, some of which are not to be missed.
For most people, Eddie Jobson will be best known as an electric violin player who made his name in the seventies as a member of Curved Air and Roxy Music, as well as being a founder member of progressive rock supergroup UK.
Jobson has had a long and varied career, which will be celebrated on a series of compilation discs – each one covering a separate decade. The first of these, ‘The Band Years: 1971-79’ features a well curated selection of tracks including solo material and some of the bands with which Jobson made his name, including a broad overview of UK’s two studio albums.