The debut album from Potter’s Daughter presented some great jazz sounds. Between a heavy piano and a confident upright bass, the record’s best tunes recalled bits of Dave Grusin and other GRP label heavyweights, as well as hinting at a retro sound fully explored by Stanton Moore on his ‘Conversations’ album from 2014. Although ostensibly a jazz/fusion record, the presence of fuzzy electric guitars stepping forth for the odd solo or three and a huge focus on floaty, harmonic vocals lent the arrangements something more amenable to the more adventurous prog fan. The album led to the band being invited to play at various festivals throughout 2020, but the world had other plans.
Originally touted for a 2020 release, the long rumoured massive Caravan box set will finally be released in August 2021. The wait has been long, but there’s good news: what was once scheduled to be a 30 disc set will now come with a further seven discs’ worth of rare material, including 11 discs of previously unreleased live cuts.
The Madfish release seems as if it will rival the similarly extensive Gentle Giant box set. In addition to a wealth of music – bringing together all of Caravan’s official studio recordings, a much praised Steven Wilson 5.1 mix of ‘In The Land of Grey & Pink’ and far more besides – fans will get the opportunity to lose themselves in a massive 144 page hardback book. A second replica fan club booklet and a signed photograph are also included. The contents can be seen in the unboxing video, which can be seen below along with a full track listing.
Following on from his ‘Acoustically Inclined: Live In Leeds‘ limited release, Devin Townsend has confirmed a second limited edition live album ‘Galactic Quarantine’.
Sourced from various online shows which replaced the ‘Empath’ tour, the new release will be issued as a CD/blu ray release and on 180g vinyl LP.
A full press release sharing all the details, plus a first look via a video clip of ‘Aftermath’ can be found below.
Despite Procol Harum’s newly recorded output being rather scant since their first reformation in the 90s, the band managed to maintain something of a public profile. Gary Brooker and associated friends kept themselves busy on the road, while fans got plenty to enjoy during the recording drought thanks to various super-deluxe reissues and a couple of excellent box sets. Their ‘Still There’ll Be More’ set – released by Cherry Red Records to celebrate the band’s 50th anniversary – was especially wonderful, bringing together classics, rarities and various live shows on DVD for the first time. For those who could afford the expensive price-tag, it was a genuine treasure trove.
After leaving Yes in 1979 following the tour for their ‘Tormato’ album, Jon Anderson barely rested. Between 1980 and 1982, he split most of his creative time between his own solo projects and collaborations with Greek keyboard virtuoso Vangelis, which brought the vocalist some UK chart success with the commercial new age/synth pop singles ‘I Hear You Now’ and the much-loved ‘I’ll Find My Way Home’. By the summer of 1981 and with the second Jon & Vangelis album ‘The Friends of Mt. Cairo’ having barely hit record shop shelves, Anderson was back in the studio working on the material that was soon to become his third LP ‘Animation’.
Upon release in June 1982, ‘Animation’ was a cult hit among fans, but not especially a commercial success. It marked the first time since the 1960s that Anderson failed to break the top 40 of the UK albums chart, and yielded no hit singles – which might seem weird considering his recent success with Vangelis – but, in all fairness, ‘Animation’ is a really complex animal. On the surface, it’s shiny pop oriented sound and extensive use of the technologies of the era make it appear as if it should’ve been much better received, but closer inspection reveals a sometimes challenging album that often delights in being busy, sometimes for the sake of it, and very occasionally at the expense of obvious hooks. However, it’s one of those albums which, with enough time invested, will eventually present a lot of brilliant material. Some of it is about as singalong as the more excessive bits of ‘Topographic Oceans’, but as is often the case with solo Jon, there’s far more at stake cheeky pop tune.