Saturday, September 26, 2015

Major Surgery - 1977 - The First Cut

Major Surgery 
The First Cut


01. Dog And Bull Fight     8:13
02. Foul Group Practices     7:07
03. Jubileevit     5:36
04. Hoe Down Up     7:55
05. Shrimp Boats     8:35

Bass Guitar – Bruce Collcutt
Drums – Tony Marsh
Guitar – Jimmy Roche
Saxophone – Don Weller

Recorded: Virtual Earth, Swiss Cottage, London 1976.
Originally released in 1977.
Track 5 is credited on the rear cover with * as: Don't Wait For The Shrimpboat Mother - Father's Come Home With The Crabs (Full title)

From my point of view, there is a big difference between fusion and jazz rock. Fusion, as typified by bands like Return to Forever or Weather Report, is instrumental rock music played by jazz guys. It would almost seem the perfect marriage of the two genres: Virtuoso players tackling the meatier rock angst and sounds. But like any genre, there are some albums with depth and others that are pretty transparent. Jazz rock, on the other hand, is usually a jazz album with rock instrumentation sprinkled throughout. Fusion was more of a mid to late 1970s thing. Jazz rock was more typical at the turn of the 1970 decade, when the creativity of rock was capturing the imagination of jazzers tiring of the same ole, same ole. Major Surgery is a great example of jazz rock, and very much a sound out of vogue for 1977.

The AC sums up: "Jazz-rock rarity from this largely unknown unit, led by saxophonist Don Weller. He and drummer Tony Marsh would go on to become fairly well-known figures in the UK jazz scene, but of perhaps greater interest to prog fans is that the guitar here is handled by Jimmy Roche, who once played with the great East of Eden. His playing here is in a sort of jumpy, Larry Coryell-esque style that I find highly appealing. This stuff is definitely coming from the jazzier end of the jazz-rock spectrum, and being sax-fronted and lacking any sort of keyboard presence..."

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