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Ian Gillan Band

Jazz Rock/Fusion

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Ian Gillan Band Clear Air Turbulence album cover
3.78 | 85 ratings | 12 reviews | 20% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1977

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Clear Air Turbulence (7:35)
2. Five Moons (7:30)
3. Money Lender (5:38)
4. Over The Hill (7:14)
5. Goodhand Liza (5:24)
6. Angel Manchenio (5:17)

Total Time: 38:38

Bonus track on 1997 & 2004 reissues:
7. This Is The Way (2:03)

Extra bonus tracks on 2004 reissue:
8. Apathy (Backing Track) (4:14)
9. Over The Hill (Live) (9:50)
10. Smoke On The Water (Live) (7:38)
11. Interview with Ray Fenwick (5:55)
12. Mercury High (Backing Track) ( 3:33)

Line-up / Musicians

- Ian Gillan / lead vocals
- Ray Fenwick / guitars, vocals
- Colin Towns / keyboards, flute
- John Gustafson / bass, vocals
- Mark Nauseef / drums, percussion

- Phil Kensie / tenor saxophone solo (2)
- Martin Firth / baritone saxophone
- John Huckridge / trumpet
- Derek Healey / trumpet
- Malcolm Griffiths / trombone
- Cy Payne / brass arrangements (1,3,4)

Releases information

Artwork: Chris Foss

LP Island Records ‎- ILPS 9500 (1977, UK) Remixed at Kingsway

CD Virgin ‎- CDVM 4 (1990, UK) Remastered by Dave Turner and Harris Greenfield
CD Angel Air Records ‎- SJPCD007 (1997, Europe) Original mix by Ray Fenwick with a bonus track; Retitled " The Rockfield Mixes" and new cover art
CD Angel Air Records ‎- SJPCD166 (2004, UK) Remastered by Nick Watson with 5 bonus tracks plus an interview; Retitled " The Rockfield Mixes Plus" and new cover art

Thanks to PROGMAN for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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Buy IAN GILLAN BAND Clear Air Turbulence Music

IAN GILLAN BAND Clear Air Turbulence ratings distribution

(85 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(20%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(52%)
Good, but non-essential (24%)
Collectors/fans only (4%)
Poor. Only for completionists (1%)

IAN GILLAN BAND Clear Air Turbulence reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Tom Ozric
5 stars The debut album by this post-Purple project of Ian Gillan initially started out as a bash with well-seasoned session musicians/good mates and resulted in a sophisticated sounding Hard-Rock/Jazz-Prog hybrid, which the band members were really pleased with. This enthusiasm led to a most inspired piece of plastic (IMO, of course) with this album, 'Clear Air Turbulence'. I've been guilty of criticising the vocals of Gillan in the past, but here he's adjusted his approach to fit the arrangements perfectly. There are 6 killer tracks on this album, one more technical than the other. All these compositions have a definate progressive structure about them, multi-sectioned and extended enough for some adventurous soloing, and most tunes are backed with subtle Brass arrangements which are never over-bearing, nor out of place. Every musician has really challenged themselves, and is clearly heard throughout - John Gustafson (formerly of Quatermass and Roxy Music) contributes stunning Bass-playing on each and every track (often using a Flanger). His highlight would be during the end section of 'Goodhand Liza' (5.24), even better than his performance in Quatermass, I must admit. I wouldn't hesitate to say that Mark Nauseef is in the Bozzio- league of amazing Drummers - he's intricate, has a great sense of dynamics and knows his way around his huge set-up. He's responsible for many great fills and really lets loose in 'Over The Hill' (7.11). Guitarist Ray Fenwick, a veteran of the Spencer Davis Group, puts on a great show with his solos - he really shines on the 7min35 title piece, and Keyboardist (and occasional Flautist) Colin Towns is a knock- out, mainly soloing with an ARP 2600 Synthesiser and clever enough to wrangle out some unique and appropriate sounds from it. He really comes to the party during 'Angel Manchenio' (7.17). We also get a touching ballad with 'Five Moons' (7.30) sporting some delicate Flanged Bass and Flutes, and 'Money Lender' (5.38) is funky and jazzy - the Brass adds a lot to this song. Strangely enough, I liken this album to KHAN's Space Shanty, if only in approach and lay-out. The result is equally satisfying.
Review by SouthSideoftheSky
4 stars We all know Ian Gillan from Deep Purple. Here he surrounds himself with excellent musicians to create a very interesting hard rock-Jazz-Rock/Fusion-crossover. Some Deep Purple fans might be put off by this because it is too jazzy and artsy, while the Jazz-Rock/Fusion purists might be put off by the fact that Gillan was one of the classic voices of heavy metal on albums like In Rock and Machine Head. No doubt this contributed to the relative obscurity of this album. Too bad, since both (open minded) Deep Purple fans and Jazz-Rock purists might very well enjoy this if they only gave it a chance.

Personally, I am a bigger fan of Deep Purple than I am of Jazz-Rock/Fusion, but this album is really good and even outshines many Deep Purple albums. And perhaps this is a good starting point for Deep Purple fans to get into Jazz-Rock and for the Jazz purists to get into heavy metal? Well, maybe not.

Collins Towns is a great keyboard player and this album is evidence of that - very good keyboard work. Indeed, as I said above, all the musicians are very talented.

This is the place to start if you want to hear Ian Gillan Band.

Highly recommended!

Review by Raff
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars It would not be too much of an exaggeration to call Clear Air Turbulence, the second album released by the sadly short-lived Ian Gillan Band, one of the forgotten masterpieces of Seventies progressive rock. For those who think of Ian Gillan as little more than a hirsute hard rock screamer, listening to this record may definitely bring somewhat of a shock - and not just because of the vocals. Following his return to the world of music after a series of unsuccessful business ventures, Ian surrounded himself with a bunch of seasoned musicians, and proceeded to surprise his fans by slowly but inexorably detaching himself from his Deep Purple past. Unfortunately, though, rock fans are not always as open-minded as we would expect them to be, and the project folded after releasing a total of three studio albums, plus a posthumous live one.

Listening to Clear Air Turbulence we cannot but regret the demise of such an exciting band, with an incredibly high level of musicianship and creativity. The six tracks on the album, which all exceed the five-minute mark, feature complex, multi-layered structures, enhanced by the discreet presence of a horn section, and overall distinguished by a sophistication, a lightness of touch seldom associated with Gillan's mother band. Even Ian's distinctive vocals, while easily recognisable, never really sound like the original 'air raid siren' unleashed on the likes of "Machine Head" and "Made in Japan". However, the ace in the hole on "Clear Air Turbulence" is keyboardist Colin Towns (also responsible for the delicate flutes on the dreamy, soulful ballad "Five Moons"). Another of the many unsung heroes of the rock world, now a composer of jazz and soundtrack music, Towns joined the band for the recording of this album (replacing Mike Moran), and immediately stamped his mark on their music, as well as on the band's later incarnation (simply called Gillan).

Weird, spaced-out keyboard sounds introduce the title-track, rising to a crescendo that soon gives way to a manic, bass-and-drum driven riff, and a wildly exhilarating, 7-minute-plus ride, powered by Towns' sweeping synthesisers. In the middle section of the song, guitarist Ray Fenwick (a veteran of the British rock scene, formerly with the Spencer Davis Group) demonstrates his skills with a slow-burning, emotional solo. Towns is responsible for the delicate flutes on the dreamy, soulful ballad "Five Moons"; while on the funky "Money Lender" horns take pride of place, and Gillan's commanding, even aggressive vocal performance is somewhat reminiscent of his hard rockin' past.

"Over the Hill" (my personal favourite, together with the title-track) showcases drummer Mark Nauseef's impressive skills, as well as brilliant piano and synth work in the bridge, and more understated, tasteful guitar. The atmospheric "Good Hand Liza" follows, punctuated by Latin-style percussion and spacey synths, and driven along by John Gustafson's meaty, dynamic bass lines. The album ends in style with another highly complex, structured number, the romantic "Angel Manchenio", dedicated to a Gypsy who became Gillan's blood brother (a very interesting story indeed, as told by the lyrics). The song, which alternates slower moments, with an almost Latin feel, and full-fledged jazzy flights of instrumental and vocal prowess, is probably the furthest Gillan ever strayed away from his hard rock roots, and a perfect closer for the album.

Even if, at the time of its release, "Clear Air Turbulence" was not considered rock enough by Deep Purple fans, and probably not jazzy enough for lovers of fusion, over thirty years later it is high time it was recognised as the adventurous, stimulating near-masterpiece it is. It is a sad fact of the music world that, all too often, musicians are much more ready to try new avenues than their fans. However, don't make the same mistake - if you love sophisticated, complex jazz-rock/fusion, don't be put off by the name, and get hold of this album. Four and a half stars for a really rewarding listen.

Review by Tarcisio Moura
4 stars Clear Air Turbulance, Ian gillan Band's sophomore release was my first contact with the ex Deep Purple vocalist solo work. And I was very surprised how he changed his approach to music after so many years away from the business. Instead of the hard rock/heavy metal sound of his former band, what we have here is a mix of funk, soul, R & B, gospel, jazz rock/fusion with just a bit of hard rock for good measure. the result is strinking similar of that of another ex DP member Glenn Hughes (on Play Me Out, released that very same year). Both take black music as the basis for their work, although Hughes tends to be a bit traditional, while Gillan definitly takes a more experimental, jazz-rock direction.

Having said that (and once you recover from the initial shock) you'll find that the album is really outstandly good. Gillan knows what to do: his voice is still in great shape, powerful and surprisingly versatile. The band is a chapter apart, since he could hardly have chosen more capable musicians for what he had in mind. John Gustafson and Ray Fenwick were both veterans of the british R&B scene since the 60's, so it is no surprise they could handle their jobs. The good news are the relatively newcomers Mark Nauseef (drums) and Colin Towns (keyboards and flute), both extraordinaire players. Towns, specially, is shining throughout the CD, using for great effect his instruments, like the Fender Rhodes electric piano and the Clavinet. His synth solos are also of notice and his flute playing is quite outstanding too.

All tracks are good, with long instrumental passages (often beefed up with a brass section). Highlights for me are the title track, the beautiful ballad Five Moons and Over The Hill. Production is quite good for the time and the band is tight and creative. This is really a team efford, not a solo album. It was just a shame those guys never got the recognition (and commercial sales) they deserved. This is probably IGB best and most progressive work. And although I'm not really a fan of funk or jazz rock this is really those records that defy categorization, being an excellent musical efford. Highly recommended.

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars Boldly going.

A year after the release of the Ian Gillan band's debut "Child in time", they returned with this follow up. If the first album had come as something of a surprise to those who expected Gillan to continue the heavy rock of Deep Purple, "Clear air turbulence" proved to be an even greater head-turner. While there was a minor change to the line up, it remained substantially intact in terms of the main protagonists. The first hint of the changes to expect here are hidden away in the guest musicians list, which includes a five piece brass section.

From the start, it become clear that Gillan has decided to take the band in a rather different direction to the rather prosaic fare of their debut. The title track has a distinctly funky feel to it, indeed at times it could be mistaken for a Stevie Wonder number. The arrangement is ambitious with distinctly jazz overtones, even in the lead guitar work of Ray Fenwick. The track will find Deep Purple fans checking the sleeve to make sure the correct album has been enclosed, such is the departure from Gillan's roots in that band. Indeed compared to this, even the Coverdale/Hughes ventures seem orthodox and tame.

I have at this stage to say that while I can only sit back and admire Gillan and the rest of the band for their bold step away from what was undoubtedly expected of them, overall this is not the sort of music I listen to by choice.

The slightly distorted vocals which introduce "Five moons" are reminiscent of the works of the Beatles. This slow, brooding song has something of an American feel to it, with hints of CSN or The Band. Phil Kensie adds a fine tenor sax solo to the latter part of the track.

"Money lender" does indeed take us into the territory of Deep Purple's "Stormbringer", this rather straightforward funky number featuring strong brass supporting a muddled arrangement. The song is not really my cup of tea at all, and of little interest in prog terms.

The second side of the album also has three tracks the longest of which is the 7 minute "Over the hill". Gillan's performance here is reminiscent of the later tracks on Deep Purple's "Fireball" album (such as "Fools"). Instrumentally, the track remains rather funky but there is a stronger rock element this time. "Goodhand Liza" is a muddled mid-paced number which sounds decidedly un-Gillan like. The album closes with the oddly named "Angel Manchehio", a song which tells a bizarre tale involving a gypsy. Musically, the track follows in much the same vein as its predecessor.

While I readily acknowledge the admirable bravery shown by Gillan and friends when it comes to "Clear air turbulence", I am afraid the album leaves me cold. There is no doubting the proficiency of the musicianship, the quality of the production, and the all round talent which has gone into the project. This is simply a case though when the resultant product simply is not to my taste. This may be due to the fact that rather than exploiting the strengths of the principal genres the album simply falls somewhere between them. I must admit though that the over jazz and funk influences are the most likely reason for my disappointment.

Review by Sean Trane
4 stars Second album from the ex-Purple screaming singer, this time with a slightly altered backing band line-op, where Colin Towns and his flute take over the keyboard slot, the other major change being that there is a horn section, often a bit embedded in the music as CAT is not a Glover production. Graced with a wasp-coloured spaceship on irs cover, the album is quite a different beast than its predecessor, as CAT is probably the only valid reason for IGB's presence in our beloved Archives. Indeed newcoming Collin Towns very jazzy feel on his keys seem to direct the whole group to a jazzier play on the 6 tracks (only).

After the excellent opening title track (where the brass section is caught in the sludge at first but gradually emerges at the end), comes another slightly jazzy Five Moons, but this time quite slow. The rockier Money Lender is obviously a shot at the leaches surrounding the group, whether service providers or eternal deadbeats, and without its middle jazzier section, this track could've found its place on a Purple album. Note that in concert, this track is strongly expanded as is the title track.

The funky/jazzy Over The Hill was another concert fave, but there are some disputable synth sounds, but we get some good old screams from Ian complete with a reworking of Smoke On The Water in its second part. One of the most bizarre tune on this album is the ultra-funky and percussion-laden Goodhand Liza, and it is followed by the Latino Manchenio, developing a South American feel and some very fusionesque soloing midway through the track. Santana's mid-70's is not far away from this. Certainly IGB's better album, it is also their proggiest by far and despite Gillan's singing on every track, it can safely be recommended to most fusion fans. It's a little sad that IGB could never duplicate or confirm this effort, though.

Review by Chris S
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars I remember when this was first released seeing it on the record stand, brightly displayed artistic cover and yes the ex Deep Purple man with his new release. Needless to say I jumped in at the next available booth, earphones snugly in place, excited expectations and as the record shop owner went through the motions of commencing the vinyl spin I kicked back with visions of live in Japan.Visons of a sudden slap to the back of my head morelike.

Naturally I was quite shocked to hear all the brass and jazz soaked music. Probably one of my earliest experiences of jazz infused prog,maybe Cat Steven's Foreigner the first or Osibisa, but the title track was extremely satisfying music to hear that left me wanting more of the same. " Five Moons" followed and this is also a great song but after that my attention span started to wane. Most prog heads will agree that awesome prog is that good that even a shopping mall fire alarm would not get your attention or even a beautiful woman. But the second side of Clear Air Turbulence left me looking elsewhere and it's shortcommings whilst still very good like " Over The Hill" it just did not deliver the same set of consistency. The dangers of Vinyl I guess and an excuse to look around. Needless to say I did not buy the album but was glad to tape it from a friend and have enjoyed it over the years. It does show Ian Gillan at his diverse best, it also shows that collaborations as far back as 1977 with the likes of Ray Fenwick make one realize how gifted these musicians were.A very good album. Three and a half stars.

Review by The Quiet One
4 stars Jazzy Turbulence!

Ian Gillan, what a guy! Who the hell expected jazz fusion from a Deep Purple member? Okay, there was Tommy Bolin, but a singer? And not any singer, the one and only Ian Gillan. This is just so unexpected that it'll either please or annoy people.

Myself, I'm very pleased with this very original effort. It's not A-class jazz fusion, but all the musicians on board know how to play their instruments and Ian Gillan's vocal performance couldn't be more varied and in better shape.

Ray Fenwick, the guitarist, impersonates Ritchie's soloing in bits while John Gustafson delivers simple though funky bass lines throughout. The drumming is good and Colin Towns' keyboards are a great part of this album, delivering some ambiences as well as splendid synth solos that are not your typical Fusion synth solos.

The compositions, while not anything out-of-this world nor very complex, they hold the listeners attention with interesting change of paces and memorable solos, though it's mainly Gillan's astounding voice that takes your attention. In the title track the vocals are well in the Purple-style with power and kind-of bluesy, though in 'Money Lender', a half-rocker, half-fusion, Ian delivers one of his most impressive screams. On 'Five Moons' however, he delivers one of his most sweet and beautiful performances, definitely my favorite song from this album, since besides the vocal performance there's a really nice guitar solo and a powerful and well-fitting sax.

'Over the Hill' is as good as the title track, while 'Goodhand Liza' is rather awkward due to the percussion and how the song develops, it's the only song I would say that is uninteresting. The Ian Gillan Band leaves the best for the end though, 'Angel Manchenio' with a wonderful 2 minute instrumental introduction and the cherry on top of the cake would be the highly original synth solo from Colin.

In the end, 'Clear Air Turbulence' is an original, though by no means complex or very inventive, jazz fusion record with a splendid twist, that being having one hell of a vocalist leading the compositions.

4 stars: Highly recommended if you're a fan of Jazz Fusion and of Ian Gillan's voice.

Review by b_olariu
4 stars Who ever though that Ian Gillan after departure from Deep Purple in 1973 will form couple of years later a jazz rock/fusion band, when his roots, musicaly speaking, were entirely in hard rock zone, it was just an unexpected move from him. The resulty is Ian Gillan Band who manage to release 3 albums, the second one named Clear air turbulence being the best for sure from the all 3. Originaly released in spring of 1977 with a solid line up like predecesos , musicians coming from diffrent already well known prog and rock bands like bassist John Gustafson from Quatermass, excellent drumer Mark Nauseef from Elf fame, etc. With this band Gillan was trying diffrent things then what he done with Deep Purple and for that matter he optained for a jazz rock almost fusion music. Even the Deep Purple influence can easely be heared in Money Lender, the rest of the album are entirely towards jazz rock even some funk parts are present with almost clear direction to Return to Forever for example . To tell the truth I was very very impressed by this album and I guess is the best Gillan evr done outside Deep Purple. The rythmic section is absolutly killer is just enough to liste to the title track, what a drumer is Nauseef, amazing, not to mention the guitar player or the angaiging and inventive keybords arrangements made in - Colin Towns . Also he left aside almost entirely his hard rocking roots only in minor parts are present as on Money lander, and he infuse progressive rock parts combined with horn section and even some flute is present in some parts, the result is pretty amazing, at least for me this combination works very well here. Not a weak moment on this album, better then the first and third, Clear air turbulence remains as one of the better albums from late '70's in jazz rock,maybe to much time over looked in comparation with other names. Gillan voice is good as ever, giving a solid vocal partiture on every piece from mellow register to the usual screm parts. Very good solid and the musicianship is top notch here. recommended, I was very pleased what I've heared.4 stars easy.

Review by tszirmay
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Wonder where I was with this one! I guess it had more to do with the fear of some Whitesnake clone creeping in through the Deep Purple door and never gave this a proper chance at all. It turns out that the content of this remarkable album lies in conspiring against the obvious and search out new musical horizons , strangely for Ian the Howler he opted for a jazz-rock format , more like Colosseum II than anything else .He chose to surround himself with some powerful second tier musical talents such as the devilish bass-meister and party-monster John Gustafson (ex-Quartermass and Roxy Music, among many others) , the delectable guitarist Ray Fenwick who crossed paths with Traffic cop Steve Winwood in Spencer Davis Group and Elf's Mark Nauseef who never quite showed this much yank flexible polyrythm on the Dio band's albums. The tunes are fringe progressive rock due to unknown Colin Towns keyboard and flute presence.

While the title track rolls along like a fizzling livewire , spewing out frizzy axe splashes and fussy singing by the Montreux man , welded together by some solid bass and drum work, the sloppy "Five Moons" is just an excuse for a savage sax blowout from Phil Kersie . "Money Lender" is more like Spooky Tooth-like in structure, Ian screeching (Goodness is he ever good at that, like only he can), funky clavinet punching through the brass backdrop, trumpets ablaze. The results are satisfying only because the track has been fleshed out by some zany soloing. "Over the Hill" stretches out further the basics, a fine Fenwick "Look, I can play like Carlos Santana" series of licks and then of course, you have Gillan "Look, I can shriek like Carlos Santana can play guitar", then toss in a slippery synth solo from the urbane Mister Towns (oooo, nasty pun!), some impromptu drum solo riffing from the Yank as well as some silly bass swirls and abrasive guitar ramblings that ultimately explode into a maddening solo. And what do you get? A cool song. Darn, I mentioned the Latino guitar phenomenon and ........TADDAAH on "Goodhand Liza", the band proposes something akin to the Journey debut album, when Gregg Rollie was still in charge and still carrying the Santana aroma with him , building a brash, spicy and polyrhythmic stew led by Gustafson's hectic bass . "Angel Marchenio" has a dreamy, funky tempo that provides a fine platform for a good story (his blood brothership with a Spanish gypsy dancer) and another thoroughly enjoyable instrumental expansion. I am glad that I finally got this and also ashamed it took me so long to get it.

Fully concur with the illustrious signora Raff, the title cut and Over the Hill are superb slices of just plain good music. But the rest is high quality funky music nevertheless.

Oh, one of the weirdest cover artworks ever which explains my >

4 Jewish bumblebee spaceships

Review by Mellotron Storm
4 stars Well this was interesting. Ian Gillan the voice that roared for DEEP PURPLE decided to record some music that was quite different from what we were used to hearing from him. As Tom Ozric states, this is a hybrid of Rock and Progressive Jazz. It took quite a few listenes for me to even like it because it reminded me of the late seventies so much. I've grown to appreciate it though for what it is and feel it's a low 4 star offering.

"Clean Air Turbulence" opens with the synths creating some atmosphere then it kicks in before a minute with vocals. The bass and drums are very active. It settles after 2 1/2 minutes and we get some guitar 3 1/2 minutes in. This reminds me of STEELY DAN. It kicks back in at 6 minutes with horns helping out. "Five Moons" opens with flute and atmosphere as the wind blows. Mellow keys take over as reserved vocals join in. It kicks in at 2 minutes but it's brief although the contrasts will continue. A relaxed sax solo after 5 minutes. Excellent tune. "Money Lender" sounds like LYNYRD SKYNYRD until the horns blast away but then it's back to that Southern Rock flavour. The vocals get theatrical at times. A Jazzy vibe follows then it kicks back in before 4 minutes.

"Over The Hill" has prominant drums to start as vocals and more join in. Some screams before 2 1/2 minutes. A nice instrumental section a minute later. Some vocal expressions after 5 minutes too. "Goodhand Liza" opens with percussion and it never stops. Vocals before a minute. Cool song. "Angel Manchenio" opens with atmosphere and intricate sounds. A change before 2 1/2 minutes with vocals. This reminds me of STEELY DAN again. Another change after 4 minutes with floating organ and intricate sounds. It then picks up.

This has really grown on me after the original shock of my first listen. For Jazz / Rock fans.

Review by BrufordFreak
COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Deep Purple-departed Ian Gillian gathered a whole bunch of A-level all-stars to make a fairly decent jazz-infused rock 'n' roll album.

1. "Clear Air Turbulence" (7:35) atmospheric opening with butterfly-flutes suddenly burst forward with a somewhat- funky bass-led rock motif over which Ian sings (with some growling poorly-effected vocals). Reminds me of one of Jean-Luc PONTY's hyperdrive songs from the same era. Around 2:30 it suddenly slows way down for a different motif. Bass and drums are quite impressive in this section with nice electric piano support. (13.25/15)

2. "Five Moons" (7:30) solo flute opens this before Fender Rhodes takes over. Ian's treated, John Anderson-like singing joins the electric piano before the end of the first minute. At the two minute mark the full band joins in with a bombastic burst of sound but then calms back down to Fender and voice after only 25-seconds. Too bad for Ian's effected voice cuz I can't really get a sense if he's a good singer (his melodic choices are nothing to write home about). The bass is about the only element of this song that is not rock--that is kind of jazzy--though maybe the dreamy Fender Rhodes qualifies at times. It's a voice like Steve Hillage uses on his first couple solo albums. (12.875/15)

3. "Money Lender" (5:38) purely a rock song with Ian going off with some raunchy stereotypic rock singing. The music is also pure two-chord rock though horn section and jazzy bass somehow work into the song's foundation. It sounds a bit like GRAND FUNK RAILROAD with Mel Shacher in the lead. The secondary motif in the third minute is pleasant and melodic in a pop-jazz way. The rest is pretentious (unless, I suppose, you take stock of the message of his lyrics). (8.6666667/10)

4. "Over The Hill" (7:14) nice Cauca-funky bass, drums, and rhythm guitar within a driving rock-vocaled song. Some of the best musicianship of the album. Great keyboard solo in the fourth and fifth minutes. Too bad about the vocal. The moslty-instrumental second half of the song contains some great music but then Ian's "Smoke on the Water" vocal rejoins. (13.375/15)

5. "Goodhand Liza" (5:24) hand percussion opens this one for 30-seconds before bass and drums join in--voice at 0:45. Whole-group vocals join in with keys and rhythm guitar over the cruisin' conga play giving it a kind of STYX or feel. Interesting and not bad instrumental passage in the fourth minute before John Gustafson starts a STANLEY CLARKE/ RTF-like bass chord sequence at 4:00. Off set by cat-like synth sounds, John's bass and Mark Nauseef's play out to the end. (8.66667/10)

6. "Angel Manchenio" (5:17) almost a variation of QUEEN's "Another One Bites the Dust." Nice guitar and keyboard performances. The work of the steady, fast-drivin' rhythm section eventually hypnotizes the listener into liking it--as well as the THIN LIZZY-like twin-melody-making of the guitar and Fender Rhodes. (8.75/10)

Total Time: 38:38

Despite jazz elements (mostly coming from the wonderfully-talented bass player, John Gustafson), this is not Jazz-Rock Fusion, not even jazz-rock; it's just rock 'n' roll. Why the guys decided to allow their identity to be lead by their singer (who, I'm sure, had little to do with the writing of the album's music) I do not know. I guess the dude had star power-- "name recognition" as they say.

B/four stars; a nice addition to any rock-oriented prog lover's music collection.

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