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Billy Cobham - Spectrum CD (album) cover


Billy Cobham


Jazz Rock/Fusion

4.27 | 668 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

3 stars TN;DL

One of the recent (and, probably, still on-going) discussions here on the Forum has been about "shredding vs. virtuosity", or something to this effect. This prompted me to describe how I feel about a few very highly rated albums from the Heroic Age of jazz/rock.

Faithful to the elated spirit of the Mahavishnu Orchestra's Birds and Emerald, the players on the Spectrum relentlessly thrash the bejesus out of their instruments, mostly in the first part of the album. I can't seem to be able to "listen past" all the neurotic shredding to get through to the music itself. Interestingly, I have no difficulty consuming almost unlimited amounts of (post) bop, which can be very intense and may appear all over the place, yet everything, all the loose strands and bouncy bits come together to form great music.

To sum up: Too Noisy; Didn't Listen. Well, I did listen, but couldn't enjoy, although I do recognize the value of the energy and the boldness of Billy Cobham's Spectrum.

Argonaught | 3/5 |


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