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Brian Auger - Open CD (album) cover

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Brian Auger

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

2.90 | 12 ratings

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js (Easy Money)
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars This is a very eclectic album from Brian Auger, unfortunetly most of it is not very good. The album starts off nicely with two 60s instrumental hipster lounge jazz numbers that feature Brian's great Hammond playing. This is a great style for Brian and shows his playing progressing nicely from his first album. Both of these songs also have much better production than his first album and feature a warm analogue sound with a big natural reverb background that you would expect from a classic 60s RnB-jazz record.

The third song is an awful rock song that features Brian on vocals, It sounds like a bar band covering Winwood's I'm a Man except they forgot the lyrics and the chorus. This song is followed by Lament for Miss Baker, a nice piano ballad that mixes Ellington style jazz with French neo-classical music. It would be nice if Brian recorded more songs like this. Side one closes out with Goodbye Jungle Telegraph that opens with Martin Denny style log drums and bird calls before stumbling into a free RnB-jazz percussion groove with an uncredited saxophone solo and weird keyboard sounds from Brian. I think they were trying for a Sun Ra type thing here but didn't quite succeed.

Side one must have been the opening set because they bring on vocalist Julie Driscoll for side two. Julie isn't a bad singer, but she tends to over-sing in an attempt to sound more RnBish. The first two songs on side two are covers of classic 60s soul songs. No one, but no one should ever ever cover classic 60s soul songs. There is no way you can improve on that sound unless you approach the songs ironically, ie punk or metal styled covers.

These two songs are followed by a nice Brit pop-psychedelic song called A Kind of Love In. Julie and the band sound much better with this style. The last two songs on the album are pretty bad with their cover of Season of the Witch being one of the longest most tedious songs I have ever heard. Brian's solo toward the end of the song sounds like he is falling asleep.

In a few years Julie would drop her glamorous RnB pose and become Julie Tippet and join her new husband Keith's avant garde jazz-rock band Septober Energy in which she would lead utopian hippie chants while the horn players tried to drown her out.

js (Easy Money) | 2/5 |

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