It’s been twenty years since two Canadian musicians, singer Bernie Shaw and axeman Dale Collins, released a 3-song EP “Picking Locks” that didn’t really take off as the pair hoped it would and become more of a collector’s item. Still, thanks to the prominent profile of Bernie’s band, URIAH HEEP, there always was an interest in this release.
As Mr. Shaw told me in 2004, “I met Dale years ago, when I put a little band together in Canada, called IN TRANSIT. Dale’s a great guitar player – phenomenal guitar player! – and a good writer, and he’s a good engineer in a studio. COLLINS / SHAW… I wish we could have put more time into it. So, providing I have the time to write, we can be doing more stuff.” And they did.
Out on September 13th will be, on CD and LP, “Too Much Information”: a full-length album featuring new versions of the three old pieces – “Here We Go,” “Hey Jimi” and “Rock On” – as well as five new ones. Given how long Bernie was working towards any kind of solo release, this has to be a great record.
There’s no rest for the HAWKWIND’s family, yet Alan Davey seems to be its most active member – what with his recently mentioned (yet not available for reviews)offering with BEDOUIN and the HAWKESTREL project. The bassist has one more endeavor to his name: PSYCHEDELIC WARLORDS – who are about to release two concert records featuring on-stage renditions of a couple classic LPs from. Laid down in London five years ago, one of those brings to life the mother band’s “Hall Of The Mountain Grill” and the other Robert Calvert’s concept album.
Both can be accessed right now from Alan’s Bandcamp page and both will be issued in physical form, as double colored vinyl sets, on September 30th, although it looks like only the latter should also see the light of day on CD.
2020 marks 50 years since CURVED AIR came into existence and, working toward the jubilee, the band not only opened their archives for an extensive reissue programme (not available for review on these pages) but also demonstrated – on a series of releases such as "Tapestry Of Propositions" – that their penchant for sonic experiment is still burning. Yet September 6th will see the issue of two items that should show the ensemble in a slightly different light.
One is an on-stage recording documenting their 45th anniversary concert recorded in September 2015 in London when the current line-up was graced by the presence of former members Darryl Way and Ian Eyre, and when they played the entire “Air Conditioning” album. The other a family album sort of thing, presenting rare cuts from the mothership alongside pieces from the artists’ solo and collaborative endeavors and stray numbers like “Soon” from the recent tribute to YES, where nine songs haven’t previously seen the light of day.
Doing more of the same yet always in a new way can’t warrant unwavering relevance, but that’s how Lee “Scratch” Perry has been rolling for decades. If one needs proof, there’s “Rootz Reggae Dub”: an album the veteran started about two years ago and finished right in time for 2019’s Record Store Day – issues only as a 2LP set, it became one of the vinyl bestsellers in April. The demand for it was strong enough to guarantee a more accessible release, so the new songs will be out on CD as well as download and streaming versions on September 13th. Featuring the venerable Larry McDonald on percussion, the SPEAK EASY players plus Dames Brown and THE GROOVEMATIST on backing vocals, there’s going to be a lot to enjoy; see the video below to judge for yourselves.
Eagerly awaited for months, if not for a year after the release of “Heavy Horses”(detailed here, not made available for review), the 40th Anniversary reissue of JETHRO TULL‘s “Stormwatch” marks the end of an era in many a fan’s mind. The band’s last release of the ’70s, it would see most of the players – save for Ian Anderson and Martin Barre – bid farewell to the ensemble that finished with both prog and folk rock excursions on this record which returns in all its glory as “Force 10 Edition” on October 18th.
As usual, presented in a book-like form, it will contain four CDs and two audio-only DVDs comprising Steven Wilson‘s remixes of the album and recordings made in the same period – some of them previously unreleased, as is a 1980 concert which will span two discs. Undoubtedly, a must-have item.