Friday, May 20, 2011

CD Review: "Robin Trower - At the BBC 1973 -1975" - [2 CD Set] - Release Date: 7 February 2011


This 'Double CD' collection contains most of Robin Trower's BBC sessions from 1973-1975 recorded for John Peel, Bob Harris, and the 'BBC In Concert' series. The tracks highlight the genesis of a group destined to create memorable music both in the studio and in live performance. Illustrious music destined to help mark out the lives of people fortunate to hear it. In fact, it has become an essential part of some of the lives of Robin's fans throughout the world.

The recordings emphasize the importance of having outstanding songs: a 'collective gift' to built on their foundation with sensitive, soulful singing; melodic, emotional guitar playing; and excellent, illuminating, drumming to produce music of power, soul and passion that words alone fail to portray. The music, itself, engenders a mixture of feeling and recall - not unlike poetry - where each melody is remembered by those who love them.

The BBC Radio 1 Live In Concert  CD released by Windsong International in 1992 was a disappointment due to falsified crowd noise and the absence of "Two Rolling Stoned" which was included in the original broadcast. The inclusion, however, of a full version of "Rock Me Baby" made purchase of the CD irresistible. I'm fortunate my brother taped the original broadcast of the radio. It remains one of my favourite recordings of the Robin Trower Band in concert. A true classic.

The collection is a must for any fan of Robin Trower, Jimmy Dewar, Reg Isidore, Bill Lordan, or any affectionate of classic rock and blues at its finest: soulful, passionate, emotional, sincere, moving.  Robin Trower remains one of the greatest exponents of blues and rock guitar on this planet. Jimmy Dewar was an outstanding vocalist both in the studio and live. All the tracks are testament to Jimmy's beautiful, soulful voice, and Robin's fluid, melodic, dreamy guitar playing. 

I believe the overdubbing of guitars on the John Peel Sessions, especially on "In This Place" (CD1) and the four songs on (CD2), was unnecessary given the profound depth and emotion each song already embodies. It would have been magical to hear "In This Place" played live without guitar overdubs.

Bugbears: Did anyone proofread the CD liner notes? The misspelling of 'Alethea' and other typos' ... It's not too much to ask, is it? The absence of a photograph of the late Reg Isadore - a genuine oversight, or not - is shameful.

The music still sounds haunting, magnificent, with a magic heart at its core. Enjoy.

CD1
  1. Twice Removed From Yesterday (John Peel Session)
  2. Man Of The World (John Peel Session)
  3. Daydream (John Peel Session)
  4. Sinner's Song (John Peel Session)
  5. Day Of The Eagle (Bob Harris Session)
  6. Little Bit Of Sympathy (Bob Harris Session)
  7. Lady Love (Bob Harris Session)
  8. Daydream (Bob Harris Session)
  9. The Fool And Me (Bob Harris Session)
  10. Alethea (Bob Harris Session)
  11. Too Rolling Stoned (Bob Harris Session)
  12. I Can't Wait Much Longer (Bob Harris Session)
  13. Bridge Of Sighs (John Peel Session)
  14. In This Place (John Peel Session)
  15. Alethea (John Peel Session)
  16. Little Bit Of Sympathy (John Peel Session)
CD2
  1. Fine Day (John Peel Session)
  2. Confessing Midnight (John Peel Session)
  3. It's Only Money (John Peel Session)
  4. Gonna Be More Suspicious (John Peel Session)
  5. Day Of The Eagle (BBC In Concert)
  6. Bridge Of Sighs (BBC In Concert)
  7. Gonna Be More Suspicious (BBC In Concert)
  8. Fine Day (BBC In Concert)
  9. Lady Love (BBC In Concert)
  10. Daydream (BBC In Concert)
  11. Too Rolling Stoned (BBC In Concert)
  12. I Can't Wait Much Longer (BBC In Concert)
  13. Alethea (BBC In Concert)
  14. A Little Bit Of Sympathy (BBC In Concert)

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