June 24, 2010


It seems the current line-up of RENAISSANCE, who have been touring since last year, will not limit their proceedings to the stage only. Featuring only two, if principal, members of the English band’s classic cast, guitarist Michael Dunford and singer Annie Haslam, the ensemble recorded some new songs that will make the “The Mystic And The Muse”, which is to be sold at the upcoming concerts, with the prospect of releasing a whole album, their first studio work since 2001’s "Tuscany", in early 2011, after a 10-year gap.

Meanwhile, this summer sees the reissue of RENAISSANCE’s most epic work, the 1975’s “Scheherazade And Other Stories” accompanied with a DVD of previously unreleased footage of the group caught playing acoustically in a studio and on a soundstage in the UK, in 1979. Another title to resurface is Haslam’s brilliant solo debut from 1977, "Annie In Wonderland", produced by Annie’s then-fiance – and recent recipient of “Mojo” magazine’s Classic Songwriter Award – Roy Wood who, as the singer informed this site, “was instrumental in [her] exploring different singing techniques… a great musician to work with, very innovative”. And it’s with Roy Wood that Annie Haslam has been recording over past few weeks a bonus track for the reissue, the Wood-penned “Flowers In The Rain”, a huge hit for THE MOVE back in 1967. A must-have item, then.


When Dave Swarbrick comes up with a new work, it’s always a celebration of merry spirit. And now the former FAIRPORT CONVENTION fiddler offers those into the past time with good company “Raison D’Etre”, an album he worked on for eight years researching and arranging previously unrecorded English music from 1680 to 1745 and roping in, among other kindred souls, such folk luminaries as Martin Carthy, John Kirkpatrick and Maartin Allcock. Of course, the traditional fare is augmented with a couple of Swarb’s own numbers thrown in for more pleasure. The record’s out on July 19th.

1. Spanish Ladies / Geese On The Bog / Leather Away The Wattle O / Freedom For Ireland
2. The Fair Haired Child
3. Granny’s Delight / The Man Tiger
4. Andy’s Waltz
5. Buttock Beef / The Rising Sun / The Northern Frisk
6. Ravenscroft’s Fancy
7.Sweet Alban
8. Carpenters Morris / Frank And Easie / Easter Thursday / Mrs. Savage’s Whim
9. Thomas And Sally
10. A Jig Called Longtime / Running Footmans Jig / The Brown Joak
11. We Brought The Summer With Us


With tribute concerts dedicated to the memory of the great late Ronnie James Dio planned this autumn in London and Los Angeles, his last band, HEAVEN AND HELL, will hardly take part in either, the rumors of them performing as H&H&H with Rob Halford notwithstanding. Still, the orphaned incarnation of BLACK SABBATH, are to stomp the stage of High Voltage Festival in London on July 24th with two singers stepping in for Ron: his old friend Glenn Hughes and Jorn Lande.

Jorn, by the way, is disgracefully first to hurry up with a Dio tribute album, titled “Dio”, and the lead-in track “A Song For Ronnie James”. While stating the record was commissioned about a year ago and releasing it now, the singer fails on two accounts: first, this CD gets in the way of the ALLEN/LANDE fresh outing; second, Jorn still can’t break free from delivering bland takes on classic hard rock material without a hint of imagination in his approach. More so, Wendy Dio, Ronnie’s widow, is upset with all these tribute albums currently in the works, because they don’t benefit the Ronnie James Dio Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund but massage the artists ego and boost their bank accounts. In other words, they exploit Dio’s death. Nobody bleeds for the dancer, then?


One new band these pages already mentioned a couple of times is YOSO whose very name betrays their origin: a cross of YES, for onboard are this group’s two alumni Tony Kaye and Billy Sherwood, and TOTO, because their frontman is Bobby Kimball. Now, having changed two members for guitarist Johnny Bruhns and drummer Scott Conner, the combo are ready to present the world with their debut album, “Elements”, out on July 5th, to a bonus CD which will be appended, a live one, with both new songs, off the new record, and old hits from their former collectives – to underline what the essence of YOSO is.

1. Yoso
2. Path To Your Heart
3. Where You’ll Stay
4. Walk Away
5. The New Revolution
6. To Seek The Truth
7. Only One
8. Close The Curtain
9. Won’t End Tonight
10. Come This Far
11. Time To Get Up
12. Return To Yesterday
1. Yoso
2. Rosanna
3. Owner Of A Lonely Heart
4. Walk Away
5. Good For You
6. Yes Medley:
Yours Is No Disgrace
Heart Of The Sunrise
South Side Of The Sky
Starship Trooper
I’ve Seen All Good People
7. To Seek The Truth
8. Hold The Line
9. Cinema
10. Gift With A Golden Gun
11. White Sister

June 24, 2010

Category(s): News

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