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Bill Bruford - BBC Rock Goes to College: Live 1979 CD (album) cover

BBC ROCK GOES TO COLLEGE: LIVE 1979

Bill Bruford

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

4.26 | 10 ratings

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fuxi
Prog Reviewer
4 stars This DVD is only 41 minutes long and starts bang in the middle of 'Sample and Hold', but it is well worth buying for several reasons:

1. BB's FEELS GOOD TO ME and ONE OF A KIND are two of the most fascinating prog-fusion albums, but few people can have seen a live performance by the band that recorded them. Believe me: these musicians do not let you down.

2. I never had a clue what Annette Peacock looked like while singing! On her album sleeves she gives a rather severe impression, but here she seems a cute and utterly charming (if somewhat eccentric) twenty-year old, even though she must have been in her late thirties at the time! When she starts singing 'Adios a la Pasada' in parlando style, you fear she will never reach the high notes at the end of the song, but she manages them effortlessly - a gorgeous theatrical coup!

3. Allan Holdsworth's extended guitar solo on 'Back to the Beginning' has long been a favourite of mine. Holdsworth is notorious for never playing 'the same way once' (he's possessed by the true jazz-man's spirit!) and sure enough, here he comes up with something radically different from the studio version. (The same goes, of course, for all other solos he gets to play during this show.) It takes some getting used to, but it really is riveting stuff.

4. Jeff Berlin on bass is as exciting as Holdsworth (perhaps even more so), and he has far better stage presence. I also found it fascinating to see how the great Dave Stewart realised the band's complex keyboard arrangements in a live situation. A shame Stewart didn't grab the opportunity to execute solos of his own. I can't wait for a National Health DVD. As for Bill B.: he's invariably a pleasure to watch, and it's fun to compare his playing with the things he would go on to do with Earthworks. (Bill's Summerfold label has released two Earthworks VIDEO ANTHOLOGIES, the second of which is particularly fascinating, since it features both the late 1980s and the mid-1990s incarnations of a brilliant band. These ANTHOLOGIES are available tbrough Bill's website.)

fuxi | 4/5 |

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