Fools Meeting – and what a meeting it is !!! This album features an eclectic blend of Blues and Jazz with a very progressive approach. Starring an impressive cast of (future) Canterbury luminaries ; Phil Miller (Guitars), his brother Steve on Piano, Pip Pyle (Drums) Roy Babbington (Bass Guitar) – one cannot help but to expect something special. Add to this the sweet, sweet voice of one Carol Grimes (and boy, does she sing her heart out). Her vocal styling is full of tremolo, something akin to Grace Slick or Signe Anderson from the early Jefferson Airplane, and also special guest Lol Coxhill (Saxophones), whose contribution to the songs is priceless. Phil M’s trademark style of Guitaring can be witnessed here, as he holds many solo spots, and is the main composer. Steve M’s jazzy Piano playing has a unique air to it – at times his Piano doesn’t have sustain, so his notes are short and sharp, making for a more interesting sound. The rhythm section is quite excellent – Babbington is already playing with amazing skill and dexterity, those that are familiar with the Karl Jenkins led Soft Machine should agree that he is quite a Bassist. Pyle’s Drumming is very busy, and he shows often that he can play outside the confines of regular 4/4 beats. Coxhill is up there with the likes of Elton Dean and Gary Windo, with his lungs full of fury, blowing up a whirlwind of seldom heard sounds with his affected Sax. Of the 8 tracks on the LP (Tapestry re-issue, couldn’t afford an original – been searching since around 1990) there is rarely a dull moment, each song is constructed in such a way that changes tempos regularly and never stays too long in one place. The music is not particularly indicative of ‘Canterbury’, the more Bluesy moments are when Grimes is singing, the instrumental parts suddenly take off in another direction, be it Jazz, Avant-Garde or Rock. I suppose if Steve utilised some fuzzy organs and e-piano it could be a genuine Canterbury sounding article. Best songs are possibly ‘Miserable Man’ (8.28), ‘Home Made Ruin’ (3.23), ‘The Wrong Time’ (7.50), and ‘Fighting It Out’ (5.48), but the album as a whole is an enlightening experience.
Limited edition 1000 copies