Author:Peter Braidis / Andrew Wild
If you were building a prog group from scratch, you may struggle to come up with a line up better than John Wetton, Carl Palmer, Steve Howe and Geoff Downes – indeed the originally proposed line up was perhaps even stronger with the latter two being replaced by Trevor Rabin and Rick Wakeman. This was very much 80s style prog though, the twenty minute epics of the previous decade being replaced by short, commercial, highly polished songs that would appeal to a mainstream rock audience. The first album delivered this agenda perfectly, but subsequent releases struggled to live up to its high standards, not helped by a revolving door of band members – Howe, Wetton and Palmer all leaving and rejoining at various times. Overall, their albums are a very mixed bag, and even when the original line up reunited in 2006 they never managed to reach the heights of their early work.(Incidentally, a box set of the albums from that era is imminent). This is a comprehensive look at the studio and live catalogue of a band that was defined by, and never bettered, their debut album (see also Boston), and the author gives some interesting insights into individual songs while keeping the reader abreast of the internal power struggles in the ranks.
The second half of the 70s, the Buckingham Nicks years, is Fleetwood Mac’s most well known and commercially successful era by far, giving rise to their self titled album plus the mega selling Rumours and the sprawling double set Tusk. Arguably though it’s the first half of that decade that has the more interesting tale to tell, a period when the band were neglected and seemingly in disarray. The story of the comings and goings of Jeremy Spencer, Bob Weston, Danny Kirwan and Bob Welch is recounted here, along with the now half forgotten albums and songs of those wilderness years. The second part of the book covers the by now well known story of the world domination years, taking in the recording sessions, the tours, the excesses and the inter band fall outs. This is a well researched and put together overview of the band in this key decade, and provides an entertaining way to pass an hour or two.
Length of Read:Short
Might appeal to people who enjoyed…
Other books in these series, fans of these artists.
One thing you’ve learned
There’s always something new you can learn.