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Nucleus - Snakehips Etcetera CD (album) cover




Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.20 | 33 ratings

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Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
3 stars The second (almost) stable Nucleus line-up will of course never equal the first one (which recorded the first three albums), but they still smoked big times. With the Sutton/Sellers (Sellers being the last clicking element to fit in this line-up) as the rhythm turbo diesel, Carr and reappearing Bertles at the steering wheel, Shaw and Castle are making their presence felt more than in the preceding album.

So you might think that this album is better, than Under The Sun, but at the risk of deceiving you, it is not the case. For some reason, Nucleus fails to capitalize on the recent musical success (nothing to be ashamed of though, the album still has many great moments), as the album lacks a bit the excitement, but I think the "songwriting" is maybe the culprit, here; Iobviously Carr has a fascination for Snakehips, which from what I remember was a female jazz dancer from the 30's, and he had already done a track in the third album Solar Plexus.

The slow developing, lenghty and repetitive title track is hardly denying my remarks above, but the opening Rat's Bag is a lively offsetting equaliser. Alive And Kicking is clearly an improv, but an inspired one. Exciting Rachel's Tune brings you back to Canterbury days with its fuzzed-out organs, Pussyfoot not shining, but with a good flute solo, and reflective Heyday bringing nothing to the usual Nucleus palette, round up the tracks of yet another good Nucleus album. But the keyword in that last sentence being yet!

Although hardly a bad album, this one is a bit inferior to the two around it, as Alleycats is also an excellent album. BGO's pairing of this album with Under The Sun under cat # BGOCD568 is maybe the second best after the pairing of the first two. What I do find frustrating with this formula is that this could be a single CD (both albums are around the 35 min timing) as could most of the other BGO Nucleus releases, therefore making the unnecessarily expensive records, especially that the artwork are reduced to minimal size.

Sean Trane | 3/5 |


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