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HUGHSCORE

Jazz Rock/Fusion • United Kingdom


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Hughscore biography
SOFT MACHINE's ex-bassist Hugh Hopper threw this fusion band together in the mid 90's with multi-instrumentalist/bassist Fred Celanor and vocalist/accordionist Elaine diFalco, both of Seattle's CAVEMAN SHOESTORE. Tucker Martine joined in as drummer and percussionist. With the help of various guest musicians, they've delivered three albums that mix psychedelic pop and prog with discreet jazzy accents.

Their first album "Caveman Hughscore" is made up of firteen lilting pieces focussing on Hopper's bass and the odd, loopy vocals of DiFalso. It sounds a bit contrived and may not be everyone's cup of tea. "Highspot Pardox" shows more direction, the compositions flow more naturally with SOFT MACHINE moody motifs throughout. The electric piano and bass rule supreme on their third release "Delta Flora", a funky space-rock album with drummer Martine laying down some great grooves as Hopper's fuzz-bass booms, the Wurlitzer and guitars swirl over the top while diFalco adds some low-key chanting over a few tracks. The album is relatively laid back but far from boring.

Great mind-altering music for fans of jazz-tinged psychedelia, particularly the album "Delta Flora".

: : : Lise (HIBOU), CANADA : : :

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HUGHSCORE Videos (YouTube and more)


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Buy HUGHSCORE Music


Delta FloraDelta Flora
Cuneiform 1999
Audio CD$12.35
$9.99 (used)
HighspotparadoxHighspotparadox
Tim Kerr Records 1997
Audio CD$47.36
$2.65 (used)
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HUGHSCORE discography


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HUGHSCORE top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.91 | 3 ratings
Caveman Hughscore
1995
3.92 | 3 ratings
Highspotparadox
1997
3.95 | 5 ratings
Delta Flora
1999

HUGHSCORE Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

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HUGHSCORE Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Delta Flora by HUGHSCORE album cover Studio Album, 1999
3.95 | 5 ratings

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Delta Flora
Hughscore Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Sean Trane
Special Collaborator Prog Folk

4 stars Third and last album of Hopper's 90's project, with the lovely Elaine Di Falco on kb and vocals. What's still amazing about this quartet is the double bass sound, with Hugh on the fuzzed-out one, and Chalenor on the "normal" one, and also the guitar. Rounding up the quartet is Martine's drums, but we've good a cool brochette of guest, of which the ever-faithful Elton is the best-known. Laced with a touch f acid-jazz and trip-hop ambiances, the mood is entrenched in the soft dreamy mode, though at times, the sleep can become a tad awry, as you'll find out.

If the opening Was A Time features Elaine's soft vocals on a soft fusion, the ever-lasting Facelift gets another 'face-lift' (yeah, it's too easy ;o))) but Lanaute's flute and some fuzzed-out sounds give it an acid-jazzy flavour that can be reminiscent of St Germain. Extremely tasteful stuff if you ask me. Electronic diddles open November, but the acid-jazz beats return quickly, this time accompanied by Elaine's soft vocals and her Rhodes, along with Jarvis' trombone. The place goes wild (almost chaotic) and semi-dissonant weird hardliner vocals are the star of Ramifications, which brings you back to Hopper's more daring songwriting days. The following Robohop goes a little further, or at least a tad bit more nightmarish, delving further into the electronic soundscapes and creepy sound effects. We return with a much softer Remind Me, where Elton's soft sax and Elaine's accordion are floating above the surface. A short acid-jazz piece Spacelift (yup, Hugh can play too ;o))) prefaces the album-longest Based On, but it's the closing Tokitae that grabs our attention most, when it goes from demented to its ultra-calm ending.

A typical 90's contemporary acid-jazz album, Delta Flora was Hughscore's final chapter, and a very worthy one. Personally progheads should prefer investigating Hughscore's rather short catalogue rather than some higher-profile acid-jazz artiste to discover the mid to later-90's jazz soundscape in vogue at the time.

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 Caveman Hughscore by HUGHSCORE album cover Studio Album, 1995
3.91 | 3 ratings

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Caveman Hughscore
Hughscore Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Dick Heath
Special Collaborator Jazz-Rock Specialist

4 stars Not so much Hugh 'throwing' this band together, rather NW USA Coast-based Caveman Shoestore inviting SE English Hopper and particularly his economical fuzz bazz, to play Canterbury in their form of Americana. As Hugh will tell you he hadn't played fuzz bass for 2 decades when this call came.

The Tim Kerr Records label which originally released the album, has long been associated with independent avante rock and fusion. However, the categorisation of fusion is misleading - several songs are quirky pop or post-rock, for goodness sake, (and have a look at some of those tune titles). This is Canterbury rock (that most English of progressive movements), strong tempered by American overtones. This point is clearly illustrated by Elaine DiFalco's take of Dedicated To You But You Weren't Listening, (the most covered Hugh Hopper and Soft Machine tune) - brought home, if you play Robert Wyatt's version from Soft Machine's Volume Two, back to back with it. There is a certain brittleness and economy about the tunes (as well as some brevity), for instance Splinter Cat told as a spoken short horror story with music, with amusing asides thrown in.

With the band compressing their name to Hughscore on subsequent albums, and with Hugh tending to record his part in Kent and the rest of the band 6000 or so miles away, then the tunes have become longer and more in keeping with the fusion terminology. However, for a very pleasant off the wall treat, start with this album.

And before our local system kicks in and suggests "if you like this band, you will like the albums of.....", I suggest checking out Hugh Hopper's and Robert Wyatt's solo albums and in particularly Amy Denio's recordings, as bassist and vocalist working separately with various members of Henry Cow.

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 Highspotparadox by HUGHSCORE album cover Studio Album, 1997
3.92 | 3 ratings

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Highspotparadox
Hughscore Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by mhiraldo

4 stars I am not going to beat around the bush. If you like bands like National Health, Hugh Hopper (who plays here), Robert Wyatt, Hatfield and the north, Die Knoodle, Matching Mole, Amy Denio, etc. then this is essential! It's like a new version of the canterbury style and sound. But don't take my word ...go to amazon and listen to the audio samples. You should also get Caveman Shoestore as it's the same group minus Hugh. EXCELLENT STUFF!

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 Delta Flora by HUGHSCORE album cover Studio Album, 1999
3.95 | 5 ratings

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Delta Flora
Hughscore Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Greger
Prog Reviewer

4 stars "Delta Flora" is the third release from the band HUGHSCORE, with the legendary Hugh Hopper on bass, known from SOFT MACHINE. The music is atmospheric, experimental, floating, well performed and constantly changing with many instrumental passages. Some of the tracks are instrumental while some have beautiful vocals by Elaine di Falco. Maybe the common listener will find the music inaccessible and hard to get into, but the more experienced listeners will surely enjoy it.

The music contains influences from various genres such as Art Rock, Canterbury, Jazz, Progressive rock and RIO. A major part of the compositions is based on Hugh Hoppers magnificent bass playing. My favourite tracks are the opening "Was A Friend", "November", the inaccessible instrumental "Robohop", "Spacelift" and "Based On".

One of the best releases so far this year! A great and highly recommended album for the fastidious listeners!

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