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Jade Warrior - Way Of The Sun CD (album) cover


Jade Warrior


Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.68 | 84 ratings

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4 stars For their swan song on Island records, JADE WARRIOR traveled to Latin America, and this relatively accessible disk is replete with the vibrant rhythms and melodies of that region. For long time fans this still sounded like a JADE WARRIOR album, but the material sidled up to the mainstream, especially on tunes like "Sun Child". It was a calculated risk no doubt informed by these late 70s mores, but the sales results were again modest to say the least.

This is indeed the sunniest of the Island records, with caressing flute by Jon Field being one of the dominant features, often played off by Tony Duhig's signature acoustic and electric guitar runs. "Heaven Stone" and the title cut exemplify these traits, with the latter also being swept up by an engaged rhythm section. But it's on "Dance of the Sun" that the duo and supporters deliver their ultimate statement for 1978, a precursor to everything from new age of the 80s to jangly college rock of the 90s, infused with a longing spirit. "Death of Ra" helps bring us back down a little from that tearjerking high, and concludes a remarkable run of creativity with the siren's wail of otherworldly lead guitars.

It would be 6 years before JADE WARRIOR would return, albeit never to recapture even the underground status it gained in the 70s. Apart from the mundane reality of having been dropped from their label, one can't help wonder if the group had laid it all out there on "Way of the Sun" and knew that its time to shine was over.

kenethlevine | 4/5 |


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