FLASH Live Tapes To Fly Off The Shelves

Five decades down the line from the release of their first record, FLASH remain criminally underrated and remembered mostly thanks to being formed by former YES guitarist Peter Banks, although the British band’s music also owed a lot to bassist Ray Bennett, vocalist Colin Carter and drummer Mike Hough. Of course, the foursome didn’t last long, yet their three ’70s platters – the self-titled debut and “In The Can” from 1972 and 1973’s “Out Of Our Hands” – are arresting progressive rock classics, whereas a couple posthumous concert albums, issued without the surviving members’ consent, couldn’t impress an aficionado due to the tapes’ under-par sonic quality. However, the three CDs of “In The USA” that should see the light of day on September 9th, may remedy the fans perception of the quartet as a live unit.

Capturing the collective during seven of their American shows of 1972-1973, one of those preserved for posterity in its entirety, the digipack will allow the listener to savor most of the three LPs in rather different performances than those laid down in the studio and the uninitiated will have the opportunity to see how brilliant these musicians were. Colin and Ray worked for a while under the old name relatively recently, but it’s the old recordings their followers are after, so there’s something to look forward to.

Says Ray Bennett: “What ‘Think Like A Key Music’ set out to do here, on this multi-disc set, is to gather together whatever was left out there of live FLASH stuff regardless of quality and present it in the best possible way. Whatever improvements could be made to the audio were done. Quite a bit of it is rough sounding, but I found that even with the poor sound issues there was something coming across of the live experience. Some surprisingly good moments. A fair bit of this material was fan-recorded, probably on cassettes, some possibly from rough mixing board recordings; some is much better studio type quality, and some has been online for years on obscure websites, but in the worst possible form – awful sound, complete with extraneous noise and talking in the recordings. So all that has been cleaned up and the sound mastered as well as possible. Overall, I think this is a worthy project for the historical record at the very least. Other than the ‘In Public’ CD which is already available, this new set is it as far as we know. Pretty much all that there is of live FLASH performance.”

FLASH –
In The USA

CD 1:
Roslyn, NY, August 1st, 1972:
1. Black And White
2. There No More
3. Monday Morning Eyes
4. Small Beginnings
5. Children Of The Universe
6. Lifetime

CD 2:
Hempstead, NY, July 18th, 1972:
7. Small Beginnings
8. There No More
9. Children Of The Universe
10. Dreams Of Heaven
Passaic, NJ, December 16th, 1972:
11. Small Beginnings
12. Black And White
13. Children Of The Universe

CD 3:
Indianapolis, in, December 27th, 1972:
14. Small Beginnings
15. Black And White
16. Children Of The Universe
Burbank, CA, October 9, 1973:
17. Dead Ahead
18. Psychosync
Miami, FL, October 26th, 1973:
19. Children Of The Universe
20. Black And White
Cape Cod, MA, August 24th, 1973:
21. The Bishop
22. Manhattan Morning (Christmas ’72)

June 20, 2022

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