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Focus - Focus Con Proby CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

2.59 | 122 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
1 stars A cataclysm took place for the release of this album. The great Jan Akkerman has gone. Of course, another great guitarist is hired and this guy is really gifted. I guess that the fully jazz-orientation of this album has something to do with Philip Catherine's presence.

What to say about the vocalist they have hired for this project ? Well, you'll have to figure out that this guy recorded an album in 68 with Bonham, Jones & Page. Here's what he said about this recording : "Came the last day and we found we had some studio time, so I just asked the band to play while I just came up with the words. ... They weren't Led Zeppelin at the time, they were the New Yardbirds and they were going to be my band". I'm bloody glad that we got Plant instead !

His tone of voice reminds the one of the Santana singer Gregg Walker or Alex Ligertwood (I could never stand any of them really).

When you mix the great guitar work featured on this album, with these vocals and you add the deep jazz influences; you are almost in the territories of Santana's jazzy period. But you won't have any great percussion nor such good composition as you can find on "Welcome" for instance.

Obviously, the only bearable tracks are the ones during which P.J. Proby just look at the band while shutting up.

"Orion" is a slow song which features a great guitar work. It is by far my favourite song. The listener can find some average music as well while "Night Flight" and "Sneezing Bull" are performed (but these two are 100% jazz oriented). But the long and improv style of "Maximum" is rather uninteresting and dull although musicianship is high.

Now, in terms of sung tracks, I really can't find one single average one. "Eddy" is a poor illustration of a Proby combination with "Focus" (if we can call this "Focus") while "Brother" is a syrupous and croony ballad (although the last part of the song gets better). I knew already that "Focus" had a great sense of humour but to finish "Tokyo Rose" with these words is just hilarous : "There is no sense for me to expand any further" !!! I bet you !

I guess that it is the same great sense of humour that drove "Focus" when they will look for a title for the closing number : "How Long". Well, that's precisely the question you will ask yourself when it starts. How long will it last ? Just run away.

It is their worse album so far. Of course, if you are into jazz-rock, your opinion will probably differ. But the "Focus" I like is the symphonic one, not the jazzy one.

One star.

ZowieZiggy | 1/5 |


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