Following the recent reissue campaign which saw the band’s four studio albums released as double disc sets, Esoteric Recordings will issue a single disc Greenslade anthology in October.
Greenslade’s first three studio albums presented a band experiencing a period of rapid growth. In ‘Bedside Manners Are Extra’, released at the tail end of 1973, they released an album with a bigger focus on songs than their debut recording of just a few months earlier. Their third LP, ‘Spyglass Guest’ (released in the summer of ’74) found Dave and his eponymously named group delving further into jazz rock, unleashing something which sometimes came closer to Hatfield & The North than previous Greenslade recordings.
As part of Cherry Red’s “12 Days of Christmas” sale, Esoteric Recordings are offering a 20% discount on a selection of their finest titles over the next few days. It’s a great chance to plug a few holes in your collection, or perhaps treat yourselves to a Christmas present or three.
Greenslade’s self-titled debut from February 1973 introduced the world to an intricate world of double keyboard led prog, peppered with occasional elements of jazz fusion. It was by no means a perfect record – some of the tracks seemed over complicated for the sake of it and the production wasn’t as crisp as it could’ve been – but it gave the band something solid on which they could build, and just nine months later they returned with a follow-up. Released in the November, ‘Bedside Manners Are Extra’ is superior at almost every turn. Keyboard player/singer Dave Lawson mightn’t have the best voice in the world and occasionally the lack of guitar can be jarring, but the arrangements throughout the album are enough to make it stand up. Decades on, it’s easy to see how ‘Bedside Manners’ is a landmark recording for Dave Greenslade and really helped to make a name for the band in progressive rock fan circles.
Of all the second division prog bands of the 70s – those who never quite made it to household name status with Yes and Camel – Greenslade are, perhaps, the band who’ve most been relegated to history. Despite a few high profile BBC appearances and four albums released between 1973 and 1975, they’ve never quite been given their full dues. If Greenslade get mentioned at all, it’s for their second album ‘Bedside Manners Are Extra’, released at the tail end of 1973. ‘Spyglass Guest’ – released the following year – is arguably a much better album.