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Max Webster - Mutiny Up My Sleeve  CD (album) cover

MUTINY UP MY SLEEVE

Max Webster

 

Prog Related

4.16 | 18 ratings

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Gooner
Prog Reviewer
5 stars My favourite album by Max Webster is _Mutiny Up My Sleeve_. It embodies everything Max Webster set out to accomplish without the fame and fortune...although they were quite popular in the Americans' attic (Canada). Having toured 2 albums and opening for labelmates Rush really seasoned these guys. Produced by Terry Brown, this album has the same kind of sound quality and production feel of Ken Scott's work on Dixie Dregs _What If_. As the Dixie Dregs were to the United States, so too is Max Webster to Canada(both countries' _best kept secrets_). As much as I love Rush(1978-1982), if the chips were down...the Max-machine could dance circles around them, especially the musicianship on this album. For one thing, Kim Mitchell is one the guitar greats - at times sounding like Allan Holdsworth, Steve Morse, Frank Zappa and Larry Carlton in a span of 20 seconds. Check out the track _Distressed_ if you don't believe me. Gary McCracken is as good as Neil Peart, but has an Ian Paice quality about him(he can really swing!) Whenever I listen to this album, it puts me in a place not far removed to Camel's SNOW GOOSE. Whereas, Max Webster rock out quite a bit here, it's the fluid ballad-like tracks such as _Astonish Me_, _Water Me Down_ and the instrumental _Hawaii_(it's the wordless female vocals that send me to the Snow Goose land). _A Million Vacations_ was Max Webster's prog.rock album and probably the best place to start. _Mutiny Up My Sleeve_ is to Max Webster fans as _Countdown To Ecstasy_ is to many Steely Dan fans(arguably their best album). Also worth mentioning is the lyricist Pye Dubois - sort of like a frost bitten Keith Reid(of Procol Harum) without the maudlin tendencies of suicide and sea shanties (oh..stop it, already! -ed.). Pye Dubois has a lyrical fixation on the moon and you get the feeling he was that one weird guy everyone liked to party with but you were afraid to introduce him to your parents. Terry Watkinson comes off sounding like a cross between David Sinclair of Caravan and Kerry Minnear of Gentle Giant(and at times Pete Bardens of Camel... especially _Rain Dances_-era). Max Webster have always been a hard band to pigeonhole, often like Germany's PASSPORT(what are they? Jazz rock fusion, or prog.rock?). Not a bad track on Max Webster's _Mutiny Up Sleeve_. Solid throughout and a Canadian prog.rock masterpiece which stands tall beside FM's _Black Noise_ and Rush's _Permanent Waves_.
Gooner | 5/5 |

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