Header

FOCUS 8

Focus

Symphonic Prog


From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Focus Focus 8 album cover
3.69 | 103 ratings | 12 reviews | 17% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection


Write a review
Buy FOCUS Music
from Progarchives.com partners
Studio Album, released in 2002

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Rock & Rio (3:27)
2. Tamara's Move (5:17)
3. Fretless Love (6:08)
4. Hurkey Turkey (4:15)
5. De Ti O De Mi (6:30)
6. Focus 8 (6:19)
7. Sto Ce Raditi Zwota (5:26)
8. Neurotika (3:47)
9. Brother (5:39)
10. Blizu Tebe (6:38)
11. Flower Shines (5:41)

Total Time: 59:07

Lyrics

Search FOCUS Focus 8 lyrics

Music tabs (tablatures)

Search FOCUS Focus 8 tabs

Line-up / Musicians

- Jan Dumée / guitars, vocals
- Bobby Jacobs / bass
- Thijs van Leer / Hammond organ, flute, vocals
- Bert Smaak / drums

Releases information

Cd. Musea FGBG 4472.AR

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Snow Dog for the last updates
Edit this entry

FOCUS MP3, Free Download (music stream)


Open extended player in a new pop-up window | Random Playlist (50) | How to submit new MP3s

Buy FOCUS Focus 8 Music


Moving WavesMoving Waves
Import · Remastered
RED BULLET 2001
Audio CD$9.99
$13.99 (used)
Focus 3Focus 3
Import · Remastered
Red Bullet 2001
Audio CD$10.12
$14.99 (used)
Hamburger ConcertoHamburger Concerto
Import
MSI:RED BULLET 2001
Audio CD$10.03
$15.84 (used)
Mother FocusMother Focus
Import · Remastered
Red Bullet 2001
Audio CD$9.93
$16.99 (used)
Hocus Pocus: Best ofHocus Pocus: Best of
Import · Remastered
Red Bullet 2001
Audio CD$10.06
$11.03 (used)
Ship of MemoriesShip of Memories
Import · Remastered
Imports 2001
Audio CD$10.35
$10.00 (used)
XX
Import
Eastworld Records 2012
Audio CD$8.19
$9.16 (used)
In & Out of FocusIn & Out of Focus
Import · Remastered
Red Bullet 2001
Audio CD$10.13
$20.77 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
DAVE BAKER - FOCUS NEW CD US $15.19 Buy It Now 34m 33s
FOCUS Moving Waves JAPAN LP 1st Press 1973 EX w/OBI MP2311 US $23.00 Buy It Now 35m 8s
BLUE CHEER / SUMMERTIME BLUES/ OUT OF FOCUS US $9.99 [0 bids]
46m 26s
Focus - 8 CD US $26.20 Buy It Now 54m 55s
FRED REILLY - GUITARS IN FOCUS - RARE OZ SIGNED CASSETT US $13.13 Buy It Now 1h 4m
FOCUS FEAT.JAN AKKERMAN / SYLVIA (DUTCH IMPERIAL 5C006-24607) 7"PS 1972 US $8.50 Buy It Now 1h 59m
ANCIENT VISION - FOCUS OR BLINDERS NEW CD US $18.44 Buy It Now 2h 34m
OUT OF FOCUS-wake up-'71 Munich psych Krautrock-NEW LP US $39.99 Buy It Now 2h 35m
Howard Riley & Keith Tippett - In Focus (CD 2003) NEW US $4.85 Buy It Now 3h 14m
REIKI SLEEP CD for Chakra Point Focus HEALING TREATMENT RELAXATION MUSIC ALBUM US $12.71 Buy It Now 3h 28m
FOCUS - FOCUS 3 - SIRE GATEFOLD LP US $11.33 [0 bids]
3h 38m
PROMO Focus 3 1972 Double Stereo LP VG++ US $11.99 Buy It Now 3h 42m
Lost in Focus by Apiary (CD, May-2006, Metal Blade) US $0.99 [0 bids]
3h 43m
CHRYSALIS - FOCUS ON THE CENTER NEW CD US $10.89 Buy It Now 4h 14m
Focus Mother Focus Vinyl LP US $7.00 [0 bids]
US $10.00 Buy It Now
4h 19m
FOCUS MOZART - DAS SCHONSTE & BESTE _ 5CD BOX SET NEW US $10.99 Buy It Now 4h 20m
Ennio Morricone & Dulce Pontes - Focus US $11.37 Buy It Now 4h 25m
GETZ, Stan/EDDIE SAUTER - Focus (reissue) - 140 gram vinyl LP US $21.24 Buy It Now 5h 3m
FOCUS- SYLVIA VINYL 7" 45RPM co JUKEBOX US $1.60 Buy It Now 5h 8m
FOCUS GROUP, The - The Elektrik Karousel - CD US $18.16 Buy It Now 5h 20m
MELISSA BECKFORD_focus on the bass_used CD-s_ships from AUSTRALIA_uv1 US $8.75 Buy It Now 5h 24m
SIZZLA - STAY FOCUS - VPCD1669 US $13.78 Buy It Now 5h 46m
Focus (Vinyl LP)Focus-Polydor-2384 070-UK-VG+/NM US $13.99 Buy It Now 5h 47m
ARTHUR BLYTHE CD FOCUS US $16.20 [0 bids]
5h 48m
Focus(Vinyl LP A2/B1)Mother-Polydor-2302-036-UK-Ex/NM US $34.99 Buy It Now 5h 59m
Sub Focus - Torus (NEW CD) US $11.33 Buy It Now 6h 10m
Dylan & Loxy/4041 Focus -- Area 52/Jabberjaw 12" Nemcron Recordings 2003 US $17.82 Buy It Now 6h 10m
.....CYRIL.....~"Out of Focus"~.....*MINT* US $22.00 Buy It Now 6h 16m
Cyril HAVERMANS - Cyrl FOCUS DJ LP US $14.99 Buy It Now 6h 28m
FOCUS HOCUS POCUS 1973 UNIQUE LABEL EXYU 7" PS PSYCH US $20.49 Buy It Now 6h 42m
FOCUS "MOVING WAVES" // Lp / Rock Hard US $29.19 [0 bids]
6h 47m
Tommy Steele Focus On 2 Vinyl LP UK Press Decca 1977 US $19.99 Buy It Now 7h 37m
FOCUS - FOCUS 3 1972 DOUBLE LP RECORD ALBUM SIRE RARE! US $7.99 Buy It Now 7h 41m
LOT TWO FOCUS SEALED 8 TRACKS SHIP OF MEMORIES IN AND OUT OF FOCUS US $12.95 [0 bids]
7h 51m
Focus ?- Moving Waves LP 1971 Sire 7401 VG Vinyl Prog Rock US $3.95 Buy It Now 7h 57m
Focus ?- In And Out Of Focus LP 1973 Sire 7404 VG++ Vinyl Prog Rock US $7.95 Buy It Now 7h 57m
Focus by US $8.53 Buy It Now 8h 11m
SHUGO TOKUMARU - IN FOCUS NEW CD US $27.39 Buy It Now 9h 25m
FOCUS/FOCUS AT THE RAINBOW JPN MP2348 US $15.00 Buy It Now 9h 59m
MARAIS / HEUDELINNE / COUPERIN / FOCUS BAROQUE - AVEC PRIVILEGE DU ROY NEW CD US $24.52 Buy It Now 10h 4m
CAMPBELLS SEALED CD - FOCUS Maine Gospel US $18.50 Buy It Now 10h 9m
CHET ATKINS, HI-FI IN FOCUS - LP LPM-1577 US $10.00 Buy It Now 10h 16m
Focus On VAL DOONICAN 2 LP Set: UK pressing, gatefold! US $14.95 Buy It Now 10h 22m
Focus on the Family (4) Audio Cassettes Boxed Series "Straight From The Heart" US $5.99 [0 bids]
10h 23m
FOCUS Rare Broadcasts/Live (Archive Media Publishing AMB4252) CD; Symphonic Rock US $11.33 Buy It Now 10h 52m
Stan Getz Focus Verve Records VG 8412 LP US $2.99 [1 bids]
10h 58m
F*ck Buttons - Slow Focus 2x LP 180g Vinyl DL NEW US $25.99 Buy It Now 11h
Music For The Mozart Effect, Volume 4, Focus & Clarity, , US $7.52 Buy It Now 11h 5m
Chris Christian - Focus (RARE CD) US $6.99 Buy It Now 11h 6m
Sub Focus : Sub Focus CD (2009) US $7.91 Buy It Now 11h 19m
LP FOCUS - FOCUS (POLYDOR) 1974 UK ORIGINAL ISSUE ALBUM, EX-/EX US $16.13 [0 bids]
11h 44m
BLUE CHEER - Summertime Blues / Out Of Focus - 45 RPM US $1.25 [0 bids]
US $2.25 Buy It Now
11h 44m
Soul Focus Project-Call The Doctor/Iz You Iz You Ain't My Baby 12" Rare House US $15.00 Buy It Now 11h 56m
CHET ATKINS " HI-FI IN FOCUS " US $0.99 [1 bids]
11h 58m
WILL GLAHE focus on FOS 11/12 DOUBLE LP PS EX/EX uk decca phase 4 stereo gatefol US $14.57 Buy It Now 12h 31m
JAN AKKERMAN / FOCUS - C.U. US $21.06 Buy It Now 12h 41m
FOCUS**IN AND OUT OF (180 GM)**VINYL US $19.91 Buy It Now 12h 45m
FOCUS, HOCUS POCUS, 1971 ROCK CLASSIC 7" VINYL SINGLE IN VG CONDITION US $9.71 [0 bids]
12h 52m
JAN AKKERMAN C.U. +1 BONUS TRK Japan edition 2007 JAPAN CD FOCUS SEALED MF47 US $9.99 [0 bids]
12h 56m
FOCUS Focus III 3 RARE 1988 HOLLAND TESTPRESSING CD US $85.00 Buy It Now 13h 5m
FOCUS - POSTCARD SET #1 - concert posters, promos etc - NEW US $8.09 [0 bids]
13h 32m
RICK LAIRD JOE HENDERSON " SOFT FOCUS " # SJP-104 1977 TIMELESS RARE JAZZ US $9.99 [0 bids]
13h 38m
12" DJ FOCUS turntableist compositions NM RARE CUT-UP US $16.00 Buy It Now 13h 55m
FOCUS Hair LP PSYCH PROG HIPPIE ROCK Brainbox DUTCH LP psychedelic progressive US $37.29 Buy It Now 13h 58m
Mitchell Gaynor M.D. - Crystal Sonic Clear Focus [CD New] US $13.26 Buy It Now 14h 8m
Focus/Harvey Andrews - Lot of 2 1973 Bristol Hippodrome Concert Ticket stubs US $9.73 Buy It Now 14h 12m
JOURNEY In The Beginning-1975-77 2xLP TEST PRESS UFO Whitesnake IRONHORSE Focus US $48.62 [0 bids]
14h 25m
JOURNEY Lights UK 1978 PROMO 7" UFO Whitesnake TALISMAN Focus IRONHORSE US $9.71 [0 bids]
14h 27m
Masters from the Vaults Focus Rare NEW Sealed (CD, Feb-2004, Classic Rock) US $21.99 Buy It Now 14h 27m
MANHATTAN FOCUS-S/T-JAPAN CD C75 US $18.99 Buy It Now 14h 29m
MAD MIX LO FI BEATS P CONNER J THOMPSON FOCUS RARE LIBRARY SOUNDS MUSIC CD US $8.01 Buy It Now 14h 57m
FOCUS In And Out Of Focus JAPAN SHM MINI LP CD NEW OUT OF PRINT VICP-70049 US $35.99 Buy It Now 15h 39m
FOCUS LP MOVING WAVES US $9.99 Buy It Now 15h 42m
MARY O'HARA FOCUS ON MARY O'HARA DOUBLE LP ALBUM D6 US $9.71 Buy It Now 15h 47m
FOCUS Focus at the Rainbow Vinyl LP Polydor 2442-118 USA US $21.06 Buy It Now 15h 51m
(BS320) Def Squad, Focus / Why Not? / Get Da Money - DJ CD US $2.51 Buy It Now 16h 14m
Focus On the Family Christmas Carols Maranatha! Music Singers Presents CD US $19.99 Buy It Now 16h 20m
PROG ROCK LP - FOCUS - FOCUS ON PROBY (1978) HARVEST ST-11721 STEREO US $14.99 [0 bids]
16h 20m
In & Out Of Focus by Focus *New CD* US $10.17 Buy It Now 16h 44m
CHRIS CHRISTIAN -Focus -Christian Music Pop Rock CD US $10.99 Buy It Now 16h 53m
5 CDs SUBLIMINAL BRAIN POWER GENIUS MIND TRAINING MEMORY CONCENTRATION FOCUS AID US $61.99 Buy It Now 16h 54m
SUBLIMINAL HYPNOSIS IMPROVE CONCENTRATION CD-FOCUS BETTER ATTENTION AWARNESS AID US $12.99 Buy It Now 16h 57m
Focus: Californopia Tour 1999 CD Jact Save Ferris Common Sense Spies Neve indie US $3.95 Buy It Now 17h 38m
Hocus Pocus: Best Of by Focus *New CD* US $11.18 Buy It Now 17h 43m
FOCUS : FOCUS 3 (DIE CUT) (3901) - RARITIES US $13.99 Buy It Now 17h 50m
FOCUS "FOCUS 3" 2 LP ORIGINAL 1972 SIRE GATEFOLD DIECUT PROG ROCK DOUBLE LP VG+ US $14.99 [0 bids]
17h 54m
Focus ?- Hamburger Concerto : ATCO Records ?- SD 36-100 LP Jan Akkerman US $8.00 [0 bids]
US $13.00 Buy It Now
18h 3m
Four Classic Albums: Focus/The Soft Swing/West Coast Jazz/Cool Velvet by Stan... US $3.99 [1 bids]
18h 10m
10 Motivational Audio Mix Tape Collection On 1 CD-R Relax Motivate Focus Vol. 1 US $4.25 Buy It Now 18h 22m
10 Motivational Audio Mix Tape Collection On 1 CD-R Relax Motivate Focus Vol. 3 US $4.25 Buy It Now 18h 22m
Power Focus For Concentration Guided Hypnosis CD US $4.25 Buy It Now 18h 22m
10 Motivational Audio Mix Tape Collection On 1 CD-R Relax Motivate Focus Vol. 2 US $4.25 Buy It Now 18h 22m
2 CDs SUBLIMINAL ATTENTION DEFICIT DISORDER ADD FOCUS CONCENTRATION LEARNING AID US $25.99 Buy It Now 18h 49m
Billy Mitchell IN FOCUS Optimism 2502 Near Mint US $9.95 Buy It Now 19h 12m
FOCUS Live at the Rainbow - Vinyl LP - Sire SAS 7408 US $9.99 Buy It Now 19h 26m
SUBLIMINAL HYPNOSIS IMPROVE CONCENTRATION CD-FOCUS BETTER ATTENTION AWARNESS AID US $11.00 [0 bids]
19h 38m
Focus-"Live At The Rainbow" (LP Sire 1973 ) US $2.99 [0 bids]
19h 54m
Michael Karn - In Focus (Criss Cross Jazz) CD US $11.00 [0 bids]
20h 15m
~ FOCUS - X ~ MUSIC CD US $6.99 Buy It Now 20h 32m
OUT OF FOCUS Four Letter Monday Afternoon 2xLP/1972 Germany/Xhol/Thirsty Moon US $49.99 Buy It Now 22h 12m

More places to buy FOCUS music online Buy FOCUS & Prog Rock Digital Music online:
  • AmazonMP3: Search for FOCUS DRM-Free MP3 Downloads @ AmazonMP3 (USA Only) | AmazonMP3 (UK Only)

FOCUS Focus 8 ratings distribution


3.69
(103 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(17%)
17%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(44%)
44%
Good, but non-essential (28%)
28%
Collectors/fans only (9%)
9%
Poor. Only for completionists (1%)
1%

FOCUS Focus 8 reviews


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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Sean Trane
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Prog Folk
3 stars 3.5 stars really!!!

I am usually very wary of those bands that reconvene some 20 years later and do a new album. This has given some horrendous results before, even (especially) with prog bands, partly because the new effort is usually half-hearted, but also because the musicians have become "grown-ups" and don't dare being as idealistic or radical than in their 20's. Truth is I did have worries about Focus' eighth album (I waited until I saw them in concert to buy it), but this was without counting the good old Dutch common sense: Thijs knows what made his band a success and was not about to take a chance with this second use of the group's name. If he was to extract every cent out of Focus, the music would have to be very much in the spirit of their first life. So he gathered a few gifted but unknown musicians and set on to record the new album in 03 and had it released on the Musea label with a basic artwork, photos of the Dutch countryside taken in an ancient car.

And indeed the new album sounds a lot like Focus' better albums (such as Moving Waves, 3 or Hamburger Concerto) and it rather hard to criticize that aspect: this is unmistakably a Focus album. But even if the young musicians accompanying Thijs are good/excellent, they are probably a bit shy of stepping in Akkerman's, Ruiter's or VanDerLinden's shoes and the show belongs to Thijs and him alone. To be truthful, I think that those young guys don't come up to the level of their older peers, because in concert the group does six or seven version of the Focus theme, carefully avoiding some absolutely essential other tracks like the Hamburger suite or an Anonymous theme. Sounds like a waste? Or maybe a way to save up/recycle at lesser costs? Or maybe because the level demanded is too high for the accompanying musicians?

Anyway, the album is a good focus album and would've easily fitted after HC or even the spare track compilation of Ship Of Memories. Yes, Thijs is equal to himself (even pulling some weird scatting we are used to), but he's alone, really. Jan Dumée does pull one or two solos like at the end of Hurkey Turkey (even the jokes are recycled in this country) and can actually temporarily make you forget Akkerman or Catherine, but the key word being temporarily. Bassist Jacob's performance is nothing to write home about, but it's not clear how much freedom he was allowed. One of the problems with this album is Smaak's drumming. Not that he's a bad drummer, but his modern "snarey" sound is simply not meeting up his predecessor's standards, and his playing is hardly exciting either. Little wonder Thijs would welcome back PVDL back into the group for the next tours and albums.

The other main issue is that Thijs' inspiration seems on the saving/recycle mode as well. Focus was never a band of over-abundant ideas and the recycling of classical composers' most famous piece was a common thing in The Netherlands (Ekseption, Trace, Solution, Finch.... and Focus), but here there are particularly few new ideas. Outside the usual Focus theme recycling, there are many borrowings, some of them even plundering their own older works.

"Lesser musicianship, recycling of old ideas, little inspiration and lack of energy" you've been reading!! So you're expecting a rather poor album, right? Well not really!! Thijs and Focus' name still operate some kind of magic. No matter how hard I try, I cannot seem to part with this album (I usually get rid of average albums to avoid cluttering up my shelves) and I guess it means that even though I criticize it heavily, it might just be better than average, and if I keep it around, this means that it is at least a 3.5 stars album. Which isn't so bad for one of those comeback albums that group absent for two decades usually botch up. Nice try, Thijs!! Hopefully the next one...

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Send comments to Sean Trane (BETA) | Report this review (#22972) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, February 02, 2004

Review by richardh
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars I find it really had to review Focus at the best of times so I am doing '8' and '9' at the same time!

Both albums are vey much Focus albums.Nothing strays too much from the core style they are famous for.Plenty of pretty guitar melodies and both are well produced.Thijs Van Leer's Hammond gets a good airing as well as various whistling and yodelling! Drumming wise '9' has the great Pierre Van Der Linden involved and he briings much more of the ''oomph'' factor.The drumming on '8' is just solid and uninspired.That said I think the compositions on '8' are just a bit better.Both albums clock in at 60-70 minutes so not much difference there either.

Overall there is isn't too much too dislike on either disc.Focus offer friendlywarm music to be enjoyed with a glass or two of your favourite tipple.

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Send comments to richardh (BETA) | Report this review (#115417) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, March 17, 2007

Review by ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars WHEN FOCUS MEETS SANTANA

A twenty-four years break between their poor last studio album "Focus Con Proby" (and one reunion effort from Akkerman and van Leer in 1985). This is a hell of a break, isn't it ? So, what can we honestly expect ? At this time of their career, it is rather difficult to tell which direction has chosen. Will they revert to their great symphonic sound ? Will they prolonged their jazz adventure ?

When I'm listening to the first two songs, they remind me the good old days. "Rock & Rio" appears like a poor man's "Hocus", without its craziness and frenesy but it is a good attempt of cloning. "Tamara's Move" features very pleasant fluting and some very good guitar work. Actually, Jan (the other one) will be GREAT during the whole of this album. It is full of good rhythm as well. With these two songs, I already have heard more interesting stuff than on their whole "Con Proby" stuff.

The good surprise goes on with a very symphonic "Fretless Love". Great guitar and keyboards during the intro. Things get a bit worse while some jazzy mood takes up the lead; dull in the first stage, the song will evolve again to the beautiful sounds of the intro. A mixed track actually. Brilliant at times, and boring at others.

"Hurkey Turkey" will feature some weird "vocals". The rhythm here is fully Latin-rock. The heavy keys remind me of Gregg Rolie. Do I need to tell to whom the guitar sounds like ? Yes, my friends : Mr. Carlos Santana himself ! I could add the following number to the sweet side of Santanal. Almost normal with such a title, no ? "De Ti O de Mi" is a song a la "Samba Pa' Ti". A great guitar instrumental.

I can hardly believe what I hear. Almost five good tracks in a row ! What a pleasant surprise. Focus at his best. After such a long time. It was well worth the waiting.

Would they perpetrate their excellent tradition and deliver a great "Focus" theme song ? Well, yes and no. "Focus 8" is not as good as most of its predecessors (mostly I, II and III). Not bad but not memorable either. And Focus just goes on with the good (guitar) work with "Sto Ces...". While you have passed the wierd (but short) intro, the same great Santana-like guitar work is to be heard. Another good one.

Some more yodeling of course needed to be present on this album. Just to remind us a little more some of their early repertoire. "Neurotika" shares a crazy beat with a very quite one. You know like "Hocus..." as if the yodeling was not enough. Now, some of you might find that it is a bit too much, all these Carlos-like soli; but when the melodies are so nice and the music so well played, I just say : hats off !

At this time of my review, there is really no need to tell you how the next song sounds like, right ? Just beautiful as well. You could also compare this effort to "Rajaz" from Camel. Actually the only weak number is the closing number. The grotesque "Flower Shower".

I am really pleased to welcome this great come-back album. Why didn't they produce such works during the late mid-seventies ? Anyway, it is so nice to see them back on (good) business. Let's hope they'll keep on like that.

Four stars.

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Send comments to ZowieZiggy (BETA) | Report this review (#135797) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, September 01, 2007

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars New album that maintains vintage style .

It's my natural tendency not to take a closer look of band(s) who were very successful in the 70's and then disappeared, all of sudden by virtue of one or two members of original line-up, made another effort in 2000 with new album. I thought, their come back is just merely for commercial reason and take a benefit from the fact that the music industry is now a bit booming by promoting the memorable releases. By no exception is this Focus 8 album. I could not imagine that I would be able to accept the fact on "musical degradation" of old band like Focus who was very successful with songs like "Focus 3", "Sylvia", "Hocus Pocus" (in fact this song was used by global television network as background of TV news), by releasing a new album. So, when I saw this CD at local CD store, I was not interested to get it and, even worse, no intention to search the review of this album on the net!

But then when this year I got a chance to listen this album due to courtesy of my long time prog friend, Hardiansyah Rizal, I'm happy with the fact that this album still maintain the style, the energy and, most importantly, the quality that the band produced in the 70s knowing that only one member of the legendary line-up remains: Thijs Van Leer. Regardless you know the band before or not, you can enjoy this album stand alone and make an imagination that this is the kind of music the band played in the 70s. The only difference is probably the recording quality that this album

What I mean here is that we can compare this with Focus 3, even from the opening track Rock & Rio (3:27) which directly reminds me to the band's 70s nuance. It's the way the band has delivered music so far and it's kicking! If you are not familiar with track by track of Focus legendary albums you might think that this is part of the old albums. Of course, if you can not differentiate vintage and modern recording. The composition is for me quite compact where the musical density quite sounds like complex for normal music buffs, especially on the intertwining roles of keyboard, guitar that overlay the dynamic and tight basslines. I am amazed with this song.

The next track "Tamara's Move (Allegro-Adagio-Allegro)" (5:17), brings the memory back to the 70s because this song is led by flute solo with some break using male vocal line. This kind of music is representing the sound of old Focus especially with the changing style / tempo in the middle, featuring stunning guitar solo. Yes, man, I am really happy enjoying this track and I can say: FOCUS IS BACK! "Fretless Love" (6:08) takes us to a musical break as the song starts mellow with ambient nuance using slow flute work backed with nice acoustic guitar and keyboard. The song moves in crescendo until at approximately minute 1:30 it really takes off into medium tempo music featuring a nice combination of flute, acoustic guitar and organ punches while drums and bass serve as rhythm section.

"Hurkey Turkey" (4:15) starts differently compared with other previous tracks because it uses soft guitar riffs followed music and then guitar provides excellent textures through a sound effect that you can hear clearly with a descent headphone moving from left to right channel. What follows is a short guitar solo, followed with organ and then overlaid by flute. Guitar then takes another solo to lead the song. "De To O de Mi" (6:30) is another excellent track which opens with tight bass lines in slow tempo with drums as beat keeper followed with thin organ line at background. The guitar (electric) then takes the music through its solo that serves as melody line. The song has some symphonic element in the middle of the track through the sounds of organ.

The album title track "Focus 8" (6:19) is another guitar-led instrumental with slow tempo where keyboard, bass and drum serve as rhythm section. Composition-wise this is a bit boring to my ears even though this is not a bad song at all. The music reminds me to the Path Metheny Group and it's probably too mellow for me, "Sto Ces Raditi Ostatac Zivota?" (5:26) starts with an ambient flute-work backed with acoustic guitar fills. The song moves in African style with male chanting at background and acoustic guitar serves as main rhythm section followed with electric guitar that takes the lead melody. The beauty of this song is the insertion of flute sounds in some passages.

"Neurotika" (3:47) brings the music into an "upbeat" tempo and this song shares similar vein with the band old-time hit "Hocus Pocus" in music as well as singing style. It's so interesting to have this song enjoyed after slow tracks. This is not as energetic as "Hocus Pocus" but it has excellent soul as its predecessor. The electric guitar, backed with organ sound, is really stunning especially when the vocal enters at the same time. "Brother" (5:39) brings the music into a dark mellow nuance in the vein of Focus 3 (the song) where it starts in ambient mood through a long sustain organ work. Drums takes the role in inviting the bass guitar and electric guitar to enter the music, maintaining the slow tempo. At approx 1:59 the music moves into higher tone which takes the involvement of flute into the music. It's nice. This is truly a guitar-led music with some insertion of organ and flute as some transition pieces. "Blizu Tébe" (6:38) seems like an extension of previous track where the electric guitar still take the role as melody-maker of the music. It's a nice composition. But, I think it would be much more powerful if the ending part comprises musical passages with faster tempo to conclude the track. This album has "Flower Shower" that serves as a Bonus Track. It's quite strange but fun music.

Overall, I admire Thijs Van Leer who still have the passion and energy to reform the band and making a new album that maintains the quality of old time's albums like Focus 3 or Hamburger Concerto. It's of course an excellent addition to any prog music collection. Highly recommended. Keep on proggin' ..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Send comments to Gatot (BETA) | Report this review (#168795) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, April 26, 2008

Review by kev rowland
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Crossover Team
3 stars Yes, you read the name of the band correctly; this is indeed the Focus of "Hocus Pocus" fame. Apparently three guys decided to form a tribute band as a surprise for Thijs Van Leer and he enjoyed what he had heard so much that he decided to join them, and then said that they ought to be called Focus. The result is a new album that shows that even without the likes of Jan Akkerman they can still kick up a storm. It is a long time since I have heard any Focus and this album is the sort that makes the listener wants to go out and grab the back catalogue as soon as possible. It is the opener "Rock & Rio" that sets the stage as the band blast and funk along, with Thijs providing yodels over the top as only he can. It is fun, it grooves and has s life of its own and the band let rip when they can with guitarist Jan Dumée showing that he is quite a find.

It is a mostly instrumental album, with the band on fine form, definitely hearkening back to the good old days. It is of little surprise that Thijs has high regard for his band mates, saying that "they inspire me to explore new horizons and unknown tonalities" Whether they are rocking along or providing a more reflective air this is a very good album indeed. Just don't play the 'bonus cut' as that is banal and shouldn't have been included as it just grates

Originally appeared in Feedback #71, Dec 02

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Send comments to kev rowland (BETA) | Report this review (#978653) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, June 15, 2013

Latest members reviews

4 stars There is a funny story about how this band came into existence - Thjis van Leer heard a Focus cover band one night, and he decided to make them his backing band for his new musical adventure - and this how Focus of the new millenium was born, but unfortunately this same Focus didn't last very long ... (read more)

Report this review (#128036) | Posted by Salviaal | Tuesday, July 10, 2007 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Warning! I'm not saying that this release is better than HC or MV; the music is undoubtely very good, but moreover, the fifth star is for the context: how many prog bands sound as fresh as Focus 8 in this new millenium? Mr. Thys is back with too many ideas in his mind. Are there some dull trac ... (read more)

Report this review (#113529) | Posted by sircosick | Sunday, February 25, 2007 | Review Permanlink

2 stars This record was a typical "i want to make a typical Focus record by myself and hire some new up and coming musicians and i know its gonna sound very 80's and uninspiring". It got some ok songs and i like the fact that he still use Hammond and sing in that Jodle-y way. The guitar was not good, ... (read more)

Report this review (#45574) | Posted by Phjodolph | Monday, September 05, 2005 | Review Permanlink

4 stars 25 years without hearing from Focus except from some compilations and then here we are presented with Focus 8. Its absolutely wrong to say that the brand name Focus was "used" for comercial advantages. Focus 8 is not about revival of a Dinossaur for the sake of the money. Its about a mans pass ... (read more)

Report this review (#22978) | Posted by | Friday, April 01, 2005 | Review Permanlink

4 stars On Focus 8 Thijs van Leer yodels and plays the flute and Hammond as he always has done on previous releases of the band Focus, but contrary to what one might expect, this album is not just a lackluster repeat of past success formulas. Sure, the albums also knows a few weak moments (the song 'F ... (read more)

Report this review (#22977) | Posted by JK2000 | Wednesday, March 30, 2005 | Review Permanlink

4 stars This record is one of those records you put on, when you come home and want to relax. Though the opener (Rock & Rio) is a kind of good fun rocksong (though song is the wrong word, rockyoddel or something like that would do better), there is a overall relaxed, sometimes even romantic tone about ... (read more)

Report this review (#22976) | Posted by artbass | Sunday, August 15, 2004 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Ladies and gentlemen...nothing here.. nothing there...nothing up my sleeve....hocus pocus: FOCUS !!! Yes its right, there´s a new Focus in town....and a brilliant one at that !! Grandfather Focus Thijs van Leer attended some event, where "Hocus pocus", pay´d hommage to the Dutch progmasters....aft ... (read more)

Report this review (#22968) | Posted by Tonny Larz | Thursday, November 27, 2003 | Review Permanlink

Post a review of FOCUS "Focus 8"

You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | GeoIP Services by MaxMind | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: JazzMusicArchives.com — the ultimate jazz music virtual community | MetalMusicArchives.com — the ultimate metal music virtual community


Server processing time: 0.47 seconds