Header

RED JASPER

Prog Folk • United Kingdom


From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Red Jasper picture
Red Jasper biography
An interesting mix between symphonic rock and folk, reminding of JETHRO TULL and MARILLION. Most important members of the band are Davey Dodds and Robin Harrison, who write all the music and lyrics. The deep melodic voice of Davey Dodds, the solid instrumental performances and the high quality production makes each of the albums worthwile.

Try "A Midsummer Night's Dream", or "A Winter's Tale", they're both great albums. Lyrically they have had the courage to take William Shakespeare on and have projected the contents of a Midsummer Night's Dream onto our present time. (Claude)

Red Jasper official website

RED JASPER MP3, Free Download (music stream)


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

RED JASPER forum topics / tours, shows & news


RED JASPER forum topics Create a topic now
RED JASPER tours, shows & news Post an entries now

RED JASPER Videos (YouTube and more)


Showing only random 3 | Show all RED JASPER videos (5) | Search and add more videos to RED JASPER

Buy RED JASPER Music


AnagramaryAnagramary
Import
Angel Air 2012
Audio CD$11.84
$10.26 (used)
Action ReplayAction Replay
Import
Imports 2012
Audio CD$9.70
$5.65 (used)
Sting in the TaleSting in the Tale
Import
Angel Air 2012
Audio CD$7.58
$4.99 (used)
A Midsummer Night's Dream/The Winter's TaleA Midsummer Night's Dream/The Winter's Tale
Import
King Midas 2012
Audio CD$11.26
$19.43 (used)
A Midsummer's Night DreamA Midsummer's Night Dream
Audio CD$49.99 (used)
The Winter's TaleThe Winter's Tale
Audio CD$49.97 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
Red Jasper-Action Replay CD Very Good US $12.48 Buy It Now 3 days
RED JASPER - MAGAZINE CUTTINGS COLLECTION (REF R6) US $11.29 Buy It Now 4 days
RED JASPER: Sting In The Tale LP (private pressing c. '90) Rock US $18.00 Buy It Now 4 days
Red Jasper-Red Jasper - Action Replay CD NEW US $17.88 Buy It Now 5 days
Red Jasper-Red Jasper - Anagramary CD NEW US $17.88 Buy It Now 5 days
Red Jasper-Red Jasper - Sting In The Tale CD NEW US $17.88 Buy It Now 5 days
RED JASPER - A MIDSUMMER'S NIGHT DREAM / THE WINTER'S TALE - NEW US $22.72 Buy It Now 5 days
RED JASPER - ANAGRAMARY - NEW US $21.10 Buy It Now 5 days
RED JASPER - STING IN THE TALE - NEW US $21.10 Buy It Now 5 days
Red Jasper - Sting In The Tale [CD New] US $14.23 Buy It Now 7 days
Red Jasper-Action Replay CD Very Good US $5.68 Buy It Now 8 days
Red Jasper-Sting In The Tale CD CD Very Good US $13.74 Buy It Now 8 days
Action Replay by Red Jasper *New CD* US $11.79 Buy It Now 8 days
RED JASPER Sting In The Tale LP UK SAIN HTDLP3 US $21.00 Buy It Now 9 days
Red Jasper - Action Replay [CD New] US $13.28 Buy It Now 12 days
A Midsummer Night's Dream/Winter's Tale by Red Jasper (CD, Jun-2012, 2 Discs,... US $19.41 Buy It Now 13 days
Anagramary * by Red Jasper (CD, Aug-2012, Angel Air Records) US $16.69 Buy It Now 13 days
Sting in the Tale by Red Jasper (CD, Mar-2012, Angel Air Records) US $16.69 Buy It Now 13 days
Action Replay by Red Jasper (CD, Jul-2012, Angel Air Records) US $16.69 Buy It Now 13 days
RED JASPER Pull That Thumb 12 inch US $19.99 Buy It Now 13 days
Lisa Turner - Red Jasper Sun [CD New] US $18.98 Buy It Now 13 days
RED JASPER - ACTION REPLAY - NEW CD US $11.76 Buy It Now 14 days
RED JASPER - STING IN THE TALE - NEW CD US $11.25 Buy It Now 14 days
RED JASPER - A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM/WINTER'S TALE - NEW CD US $16.40 Buy It Now 14 days
Sting In The Tale,Artist - Red Jasper, in Good condition CD US $12.00 Buy It Now 16 days
Red Jasper - Anagramary (Music CD) US $24.41 Buy It Now 17 days
Red Jasper - Sting in the Tale (Music CD) US $24.41 Buy It Now 17 days
Red Jasper - Midsummer Night's Dream/Winter's Tale (Music CD) US $26.90 Buy It Now 18 days
@ CD Red Jasper - Anagramary RARE PROG / CYMBELINE RECORDS 1997 US $19.99 Buy It Now 18 days
RED JASPER - ACTION REPLAY (UK) NEW CD US $19.80 Buy It Now 20 days
RED JASPER - Pull that thumb (Off the top of you head) - 1989 3-track 12" Single US $48.71 Buy It Now 20 days
RED JASPER - STING IN THE TALE - BONUS TRACKS NEW CD US $22.29 Buy It Now 21 days
Red Jasper - Sting In The Tale CD US $19.69 Buy It Now 25 days
Red Jasper - Action Replay CD US $17.74 Buy It Now 25 days
pic + B 2 RED JASPER - STING IN THE TALE HTD records US $25.99 Buy It Now 25 days
RED JASPER - MIDSUMMER NIGHTS DREAM/WINTERS TALE (UK) NEW CD US $23.01 Buy It Now 26 days
Red Jasper - Midsummer Nights Dream/Winters Tale [CD New] US $15.54 Buy It Now 27 days
A Midsummer Night's Dream/The Winter's Tale - Red Jasper New & Sealed Compact Di US $24.69 Buy It Now 27 days
Red Jasper - Midsummer Nights Dream/Winters Tale CD US $20.32 Buy It Now 28 days
Turner, Lisa Red Jasper Sun CD US $10.00 Buy It Now 28 days
Red Jasper Sun - Turner,Lisa New & Sealed CD-JEWEL CASE Free Shipping US $26.64 Buy It Now 29 days

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

RED JASPER shows & tickets


RED JASPER has no upcoming shows, according to LAST.FM syndicated events and shows feed

RED JASPER discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

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

3.20 | 9 ratings
Sting In The Tale
1990
3.59 | 14 ratings
A Midsummer Night's Dream
1993
3.53 | 11 ratings
A Winter's Tale
1994
3.93 | 14 ratings
Anagramary
1997

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

2.98 | 5 ratings
Action Replay
1992

RED JASPER Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

RED JASPER Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.91 | 3 ratings
A Midsummer Night's Dream/The Winter's Tale
2012

RED JASPER Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

0.00 | 0 ratings
Englands Green & Pleasant Land? (EP)
1987
3.00 | 2 ratings
Pull That Thumb (Off The Top Of Your Head) (EP)
1989

RED JASPER Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Anagramary by RED JASPER album cover Studio Album, 1997
3.93 | 14 ratings

BUY
Anagramary
Red Jasper Prog Folk

Review by kenethlevine
Special Collaborator Prog-Folk Team

3 stars With "Anagramary", RED JASPER's overt musical relationship with Olde England suffered a direct hit. While on the near masterpieces "Midsummer Night's Dream" and "Winter's Tale" they were the lonely exponents of Celtified neo prog, here they practically abandon those musical pretensions even as anti-Imperialist themes remain in the foreground. A few touches of whistle and middle Eastern flourishes remain, as if Davey Dodds' voice alone wasn't enough to remind us to whom we were listening.

With neo prog being no friend of distinction, and with the overuse of colossally over amplified and redundant riffs, what's most arresting about this final (well, at least for 15 years) bow is that it's actually quite a refreshing album, with many passages rivaling earlier peaks. Dodds' voice is in fine form even if several instrumental cuts and lead vocals by Dave Clifford render him less integral than hitherto imaginable within the collective. Robin Harrison excels on lead guitar and Lloyd George's keyboards somewhat redeem otherwise banal hard rockers. "Babylon Rising", "In the Name of Empire', and "through the Dawn" are all top notch, the first two because they are so distinctively JASPER, the latter because it is so slick and un-JASPER like that it could be the pinnacle for a thousand other bands' repertoires. In fact, Clifford is a ringer for Lou Gramm on this emotive piece. "in Her Eyes", in contrast, is like "Through the Dawn" with the edges sanded down, that is, not much of anything, while "Island of the Mighty" and "People of the Hills" veer far to close to riff rock, never the band's trump card. "Waterfalls" is a fascinating, almost ambient instrumental which cascades to and fro, and is quite unlike the usual JASPER fare of any era.

It's hard to say if "Anagramary" represented a conscious effort to commercialize the product by skimming off much of its folky character, or whether it was simply the result of reduced engagement by the band's most eccentric affiliate. The imminent release of the Dodds-less " The Great and Secret Show" might resolve that puzzle once and for all.

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).

 Action Replay by RED JASPER album cover Live, 1992
2.98 | 5 ratings

BUY
Action Replay
Red Jasper Prog Folk

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator Symphonic Team

2 stars Land fit for heroes

This reviewer is very happy indeed that Red Jasper's entire back catalogue has now been remastered and released on CD (and a brand new studio album in in the pipeline). The remastered series includes all four of the band's previous studio albums (with all the tracks from the 1989 EP Pull That Thumb (Off The Top Of Your Head) added as bonus tracks to the Sting In The Tale remaster) as well as this live album. Unfortunately, Action Replay is not very representative of the greatness of the band. This has everything to do with the fact that it was recorded very early in their career, before their masterpiece album A Midsummer Night's Dream that constituted the band's first mature release. Still, there are some hints here of what was to come.

The brilliant and distinctive lead vocals of Davey Dodds were already present here, as well as the lovely electric mandolins and tin whistles that makes the sound of Red Jasper so unique and wonderful. However, at this early stage in their career they still suffered from a certain do-it-yourself-mentality and slightly "punky" attitude. There is little of the refined subtlety, and nothing of the sonic excellence that would characterise A Midsummer Night's Dream and subsequent albums. The tasteful Neo-Prog sounds that would come to influence A Midsummer Night's Dream (and then go on to dominate Anagramary) had not yet made its mark on the band at this point.

Oddly, the majority of the songs on this live album never appeared on any studio album. This fact makes this album essential for hard core fans, but it detracts from the album's status as representative of the band (to say nothing of the best of the band). Surprisingly, only a couple of songs from their studio debut - the only album they had under their belts at the time of this live recording - appear here. Not one song performed here ended up on A Midsummer Night's Dream that was only a single year away at the time of this album's release. Interestingly, one of the songs later appeared on A Winter's Tale.

The best tracks here are Englands Green & Pleasant Land?, Second Coming, The Shaman's Song, and the traditional King Of The Fairies. These songs are indeed nothing short of brilliant, and these are also the ones that most strongly point toward the great future of the band. But the first three of these these songs are all available elsewhere in even better versions (studio versions). Overall, there are just too many throw-away songs here to make a solid live record.

Red Jasper is a very underrated and highly recommended band, but Action Replay is recommended primarily for fans and collectors. Beginners should check out the band's studio albums first, especially the fantastic duo of A Midsummer Night's Dream and A Winter's Tale.

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).

 Anagramary by RED JASPER album cover Studio Album, 1997
3.93 | 14 ratings

BUY
Anagramary
Red Jasper Prog Folk

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

4 stars And so we come to the end of the first phase of Red Jasper. Following on from the two albums recorded for SI Music and the promotional touring that followed it the band took a break, and by the time that they came back together to record what was to be their final album the band had moved in different directions. In fact singer Davey Dodds wasn't involved a great deal in the writing process, which was spread out much more evenly over the remaining four guys. The album was recorded at the same studio as the previous two, but this time Davey was only there when it was time for him to record his vocals and it was little surprise that the band broke up not long afterwards. As Davey had been involved with many publications as the main contact, it also wasn't surprising that few even knew that it had been released as he bowed out of proceedings.

Although I had been a fan of the other albums I didn't actually hear 'Anagramary' until 2011, some fourteen years after it was originally released, so in many ways this is a 'new' album for me and looking back it is possible to see that here was a band in transition. Davey no longer took lead vocals on all songs, with drummer DC stepping to the fore and giving the band a different sound with "In Her Eyes" being both a departure and yet also familiar. There are times when Lloyd is content with piano, but there are others when swathes of Hammonds are what is required while the rest of the guys show why the band were mentioned as being "Motorhead meets Jethro Tull".

It is hard to fathom that this album basically sank without trace, being known to only a select few, and that it has taken 15 years for it to be made widely available again, but here it is with a bonus live number (and again a great booklet) and if you enjoy prog that is very English in its' style then this is essential. Red Jasper are recording again in 2012, with DC as the lead singer and new drummer Nick Harradence (Shadowland) filling his drum seat, and are playing the Fleece in December so get your tickets now!!

If, like me, you will be unable to attend (I live the other side of the world, what's your excuse?) then you will just have to satisfy your musical cravings by picking up all of the Angel Air reissues. www.angelair.co.uk

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).

 A Midsummer Night's Dream/The Winter's Tale by RED JASPER album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2012
3.91 | 3 ratings

BUY
A Midsummer Night's Dream/The Winter's Tale
Red Jasper Prog Folk

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

4 stars After the release of 'Action Replay' the band hit the road again and also managed to secure a distribution deal with the Dutch label SI Records. The record sold so well that label boss Willebrord Elsing offered the band a three album deal. This was the first time that they had been given the luxury of being able to spend time writing something that would hopefully appeal to a wider audience, and as they were seen as an English band why not Shakespeare? Both of these albums were released in 1994, and they are often viewed as part of the same piece so it makes perfect sense for Angel Air to reissue these together as a double set. The band were by now working really well together, having again been gigging hard, with 'guest' keyboard player Lloyd George now very much a full member of the band.

These two albums were extremely complex, both lyrically and musically, but never lost the punch and power that RJ had built their reputation upon. Yes there were crunching guitars, but there was also delicate mandolin, and keyboards rising majestically above proceedings while the bass and drum interplay kept everyone nailed to the floor. I was lucky enough to hear (and indeed review) these albums all those years ago and now, as I did back then, can only wonder why these didn't lift the band into the heights that they undoubtedly deserved to be. They are a delight from start to finish and Lloyd's remastering has provided an additional crispness that allows the listener to just sit back and savour everything that is going on.

Two very English albums from a very English band (even the sonnets are true to the original concept with four quatrains followed by two rhyming couplets). Here they have been presented with some additional live songs taken from RJ's successful European tour, and are a worthy addition to any music lover's collection. Oh, can I just also mention that the booklet text is particularly fine??

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).

 Action Replay by RED JASPER album cover Live, 1992
2.98 | 5 ratings

BUY
Action Replay
Red Jasper Prog Folk

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

4 stars On 26th January 1992 Red Jasper took to the stage at the Fleece & Firkin in Bristol with the intention of recording the gig for posterity. This was the second time of asking as the equipment had failed during the originally planned recording at the end of 1991, so this was the 'action replay'. At this time the band didn't have a recording contract, although their previous release 'Sting In The Tale' had been well received, so they felt that a quick way to get more product out was to release a live set. The line-up had also changed, with Davey Dodds (vocals, mandolin etc), Robin Harrison (guitars) and DC (drums) being joined by bassist Jon Thornton. But they felt that they ought to expand the sound again (previously having sax and keys etc), so roped in keyboard player Lloyd George (of Just) to guest for this night only.

The result is an album that has really stood the test of time and is still as lively and vibrant 20 years down the line as it was on that night. There was/is a very Englishness about this band that was matched by very few in the prog scene, and probably their only real contemporaries in the underground was Grace, but these guys really knew how to put the 'rock' into prog rock. The band have been compared to many others, but really they had no comparison. Of course people who haven't heard them do need a pag on which to hang their musical hat so to speak, so let's say that they had the folk and balls of Horslips, as well as the whistle and keyboards (and even perform 'The King Of The Fairies') yet at times come across as a metallic Jethro Tull. There is a venom in Davey's vocals that provide a harsh edge to proceedings; the folk/punk ethic combining strongly.

It is great that this album has now been made available on CD at long last. No bonus songs, but there is an incredibly well-written booklet''

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).

 Pull That Thumb (Off The Top Of Your Head) (EP) by RED JASPER album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1989
3.00 | 2 ratings

BUY
Pull That Thumb (Off The Top Of Your Head) (EP)
Red Jasper Prog Folk

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator Symphonic Team

3 stars English, green, and very pleasant indeed

In 1989, the year before the release of their first full-length studio album Sting In The Tale, Red Jasper released this EP featuring three tracks. When Sting In The Tale was finally re-released on CD in 2012, these three tracks were appropriately all added on as bonus tracks. The first two tracks, Pull That Thumb (Off The Top Of Your Head) and Flagpole, fit right in with the eclectic and somewhat erratic material that ended up on Sting In The Tale. As such, they have little to do with the greatness that the band would reach on later studio albums. The nine and a half minute plus England's Green & Pleasant Land?, on the other hand, is a superb piece of Red Jasper, clearly pointing towards the unique and distinctive sound the band would go on to perfect on subsequent albums such as A Midsummer Night's Dream and A Winter's Tale. This little epic was a very nice surprise for me! Had this track been on the original version of Sting In The Tale that would have constituted a major improvement, easily outshining even the best tracks from that album.

As I pointed out in my review of Sting In The Tale, the band had yet to find their own musical identity at this point in time. But England's Green & Pleasant Land? proves that they already before the release of that album had it in them to create progressive Folk Rock of the highest quality. Some of the band's trademark elements were already present here, most notably the very distinctive and brilliant lead vocals of Davey Dodds, as well as the sublime mandolins and whistles.

Something of a lost gem this; it is absolutely worth it getting the remastered CD-version of Sting In The Tale for this track alone!

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).

 Sting In The Tale by RED JASPER album cover Studio Album, 1990
3.20 | 9 ratings

BUY
Sting In The Tale
Red Jasper Prog Folk

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

4 stars Towards the end of 2011 I was perusing through the internet, and started thinking about bands that I used to deal with in the early Nineties and this led me to conduct a search for Red Jasper. I was surprised but extremely pleased to see that they were again active, and that they had an interesting website. The person I always used to talk to had been singer Davey Dodds, but he is no longer involved, so I thought that I would contact them and see how they were doing. Drummer/singer DC and I were soon swapping emails and I offered to send him copies of every review I had ever written on the band, and eventually managed to be organized enough to be able to do so. DC told me that he was hoping to find a record label that may be interested in releasing all of their old albums on CD, and I asked if he had thought of Angel Air and would he like an introduction to the person in charge? And so it was that a few weeks later the band had agreed with the label to reissue five albums, with 'Sting In The Tale' to be the first (which also includes as a bonus the songs from the "Pull That Thumb?(off the top of your head)" EP), and that yours truly was going to be writing all of the booklets.

As I write this only 'Sting' has been reissued to date, but 'A Midsummer Night's Dream'/'The Winter's Tale' will soon be available as a double pack, with 'Action Replay' following soon afterwards. Of course, some people may now say that isn't really possible for me to be completely objective when writing a review, so perhaps it might be best to go back to what I said all those years ago: "you cannot fail to fall in love with this. Red Jasper's strength is not only their musical and song-writing ability but the fact that within each song they combine instruments and moods in a constructive, challenging yet interesting manner." I still stand by that: this is an album of music where the guys are challenging each other throughout ? a real refusal to fit into any one particular style and heavily political to boot. What I find really interesting is that this album was originally recorded and released in 1990 yet here in 2012 it is still a damn fine listen and hasn't dated at all.

If you enjoy folk rock with more than just a hint of edge and power (described by Davey himself as "Motörhead meets Jethro Tull"), then this is for you. Mention must be made of the fine remastering that Lloyd George has undertaken, and come to think of it the text in the booklet is particularly interesting as well?..

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).

 Sting In The Tale by RED JASPER album cover Studio Album, 1990
3.20 | 9 ratings

BUY
Sting In The Tale
Red Jasper Prog Folk

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator Symphonic Team

3 stars Fairport Convention with a bit of saxophone!

Red Jasper is one of the most overlooked bands I have ever come across. After having given high praise to all of the band's three subsequent studio albums A Midsummer Night's Dream, A Winter's Tale and Anagramary, I was anxious to hear this debut. But it was not easy to find this album. My first attempt involved buying this album on vinyl LP, but unfortunately it did not play as it should. Thanks to a fellow Prog Archives reviewer I finally managed to get hold of the music without any defects. The band's official website now states that all the Red Jasper albums will be re-released on CD with bonus tracks which is fantastic news!

Sting In The Tale was Red Jasper's first full length album (they debuted with an EP that was released a few years before). It is fair to say that the band had yet to truly find its own identity at this point and that they later made a major leap forward with their masterpiece A Midsummer Night's Dream some three years later. Some of the band's trademark elements were already present here, most notably the distinctive and unique lead vocals of Davey Dodds. But some other elements of their sound were yet to be developed (the Neo-Prog element) and some would later be altogether removed (the presence of saxophone). In the light of this, Sting In The Tale is clearly inferior to the three albums that came after it and not very representative of the band.

Still, judged on its own merits, and for what it is, this is a good debut from a promising band. About half of the songs here point more or less clearly in the direction that the band would later take while the other half is rather erratic. Faceless People is a slow, rather conventional rocker with strong vocals and discrete Folk elements. It is a good song, but it lacks both the progressive elements and the strong melody of Virtual Reality that would open the band's next album. Guy Fawkes is a complete throwaway; a punky feel to this one. T.V. Screen too is disappointing and the saxophone sticks out like a sore thumb in the band's sound. At this point it is tempting to dismiss this album as stemming from an immature period of the band's career not worthy of attention by us who fell in love with the later albums, but Second Coming quickly reassures us that this really is the same great Red Jasper. Dodds here delivers a haunting vocal and tasteful mandolin and tin whistle. The first highlight of the album for me.

Old Jack is a more typical uptempo British Folk Rock tune in the style of Fairport Convention. Fair enough. Company Director is a decent song but the hope of finding anything Prog here is running out. Secret Society is another throwaway and the listener's patience is once again tried. Thankfully, the the final tracks of the album are good ones. Magpie is the second highlight of the album and again reminds of later efforts. The closing track I Can Hew is another Fairport Convention-like track and indeed it features Ric Sanders from that classic band on fiddle.

Red Jasper is a very highly recommended band, but while Sting In The Tale is a good album, it is certainly not the place for newcomers to begin. Start instead with the brilliant A Midsummer Night's Dream and then on to A Winter's Tale and Anagramary. And only after that, if you still want more, you can turn to the present album.

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).

 Sting In The Tale by RED JASPER album cover Studio Album, 1990
3.20 | 9 ratings

BUY
Sting In The Tale
Red Jasper Prog Folk

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Neo Prog Team

3 stars From the county of Whitshire comes this UK band, formed in mid-80's with Davey Dodds, Robin Harrison, Tony Heath and Mark Ollard as the original line-up.Much more on the folkier side of things this line-up recorded the rare LP ''Englands Green & Pleasant Land ?'' in 1987, only sold at local gigs.Later the line-up was expanded with the addition of Pat D'Arcy on saxes,while Ollard was replaced by Dave Clifford.Securing a deal with HTD Records, the band recorded the debut ''Sting in the Tale'' during a 4-week period, eventually released in 1990 both as LP and CD issues.

The sound of the band was pretty original, trying to push Folk Rock into more entertaining and modern forms, mixing traditional sounds from mandolins,tin whistles and violins (the later credited to Ric Sanders of Fairport Convention fame) with rockin' grooves and expressive lyricism.With Davey Dodds' voice being as theatrical and powerful as FISH'es, Red Jasper deliver some dynamic and groovy songs with an energetic and solid rhythm section enriched by folkish sections: mandolin introduction, driving violins, whistles interruptions and accordion tunes.On the other hand a few tracks serve just the joyful side of rock music with light keyboards, deep bass and drumming along with emphatic vocals, being rather straightforward and nothing close to the basics of progressive music.Still all of them have a very rich atmosphere and good production to be supported and finally sounding quite pompous.

Far from being essential, Red Jasper's debut is based on the band's originality and pounding approach to push the Folk aesthetics into a more rockin' mood.Good effort and warmly recommended.

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).

 Anagramary by RED JASPER album cover Studio Album, 1997
3.93 | 14 ratings

BUY
Anagramary
Red Jasper Prog Folk

Review by tszirmay
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

5 stars Back from the mists of the past, Red Jasper is set to return with some new material. Now they never were a big splash even in prog circles, their albums quite hard to find but blessed by great qualities that deserve some recognition. Imagine a more Celtic-folk Galahad and you may have a clearer idea, as now departed vocalist Davey Dodds certainly had an incredible voice, correctly identified by others as somewhere between David Cousins, Fish and Gabriel but actually closer to Galahad's Stuart Nicholson, a gifted vocalist in a genre not always very famous for its microphone wielders! Previous albums "A Midsummer's Night" (1993) and "A Winter's Tale" (1994) possessed obvious Shakespearean hues, all enveloped in a tight neo-folk structure, blessed by some inspired playing , delightful vocals and interesting lyrics. The band's core instrumentalists remain until today as Robin Harrison on electric and acoustic guitars (Dave Lambert of Strawbs comes to mind), the highly supportive Lloyd George on keyboards and a tight rhythm section of Jonathan Thornton on bass and drummer Doug Clifford who is the new lead vocalist on the upcoming 2011 release. These lads are gifted players and fully understand the benefits of mood and atmosphere. This is Red Jasper last recorded opus back in 1997 'Perfect Symmetry' wastes little time in dilly-dallying, heading straight for the jugular with some powerful chops, Davey displaying his dramatic singing style, acrobatically forging the song ahead , very reminiscent of Nicholson's delivery on Galahad's recent and critically acclaimed 2007's "Empires Never Last" album. This is a stellar opener that bodes well for the remainder of the tracks presented here. In fact, that same Arthurian connection reappears on the second track 'Babylon Rising' and aptly titled fourth piece 'In the Name of Empire'. These all are strong Neo-prog tracks that are vivid, expressive and breathtaking, spiced with lovely Celtic/Oriental touches on the first one (tin whistle and bodhran) and politico-satirical on the second named as only the English can successfully do. The final lyric is "empires never last" (did the Galahad boys find their inspiration here, I ask? A great tune nevertheless graced by humorous lyrics with a stunning tin whistle solo, followed by a sultry violin slide and a galloping beat protected by mellotron washes. The profound anti- colonial rants continue on the fluid instrumental 'Flag' and the gratingly hard-edged 'Island of the Mighty', both complementing the overall theme quite brilliantly. The ornate instrumental qualities are openly expressed, with all soloists shining ever so brightly, offering up stark contrasts and evocative flurries of notes. 'People of the Hills' features harder boundaries, wah-wah twirling guitars and acerbic lyrics and vocal deliveries, almost crunching rocker material. Drummer Clifford has a different yet just as pleasant voice on the gorgeous 'In Her Eyes', a sumptuous ode to love , a subject matter that has room in prog , regardless of what the purist claim. Acoustic guitar frills introduce the heartfelt yet simple melody , trembling vocals expressing regret and humility evolving into a masterful chorus that refuses to fade away, deeply eloquent in that peculiar brit folk style. The elegant piano solo relates the feelings perfectly and the lead guitar solo keeps it graceful until the end. Clifford returns on the simply marvelous 'Through the Dawn', a highlight ballad that is the summit here for me. I could listen to this unendingly, a serenely appealing and memorable concoction that has a 'Dust in the Wind' feel . This consummate opus ends with the instrumental electronica of 'Waterfalls' that surprises one with a guitar finale of unforgettable proportions. "Anagramary" is a most precious recording indeed, highly original within the constraints of a limited genre. Fans of the above mentioned certainly need to hunt this one down, as its a hard find .That only makes it even more precious. 5 Crimson stones

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).

Thanks to ProgLucky for the artist addition. and to NotAProghead for the last updates

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: 1.43 seconds