Saturday, March 5, 2016

Slapp Happy - 2001 - Live In Japan

Slapp Happy
Live In Japan 

01. King of Straw
02. Slow Moon's Rose
03. Michelangelo
04. Riding Tiger
05. Small Hands of Stone
06. Haiku
07. Is it You?
08. Casablanca Moon
09. Moon Lovers
10. Strayed
11. A Little Something
12. I'm All Alone
13. The Unborn Byron
14. Scattered for Life
15. Who's Gonna Help Me Now?
16. Let's Travel Light

- Anthony Moore / keyboards, guitar, vocals, harmonica, shaker
- Peter Blegvad / guitar, vocals, percussion, harmonica
- Dagmar Krause / vocals, percussion, keyboards, harmonica

In the early 1970s the trio Slapp Happy, which comprises of German vocalist Dagmar Krause, British keyboardist Anthony Moore and US guitarist Peter Blegvad, was part of the early RIO movement, closely associated with the British group Henry Cow. The two bands recorded a couple of brilliant albums together and Slapp Happy recorded two albums of their own (on their debut they were supported by the German band Faust), which are all considered absolute classic of avant-garde rock. When the band re-united in 1997 to record the splendid “Ça Va” album, expectations were sky-high. The result took many of the band's fans by surprise, as almost 30 years later Slapp Happy evolved into a completely different band, playing sophisticated, but melodic and hardly avant-garde material. Nevertheless the trio members lost none of their magical touch over the years as far as musicianship and composing skills are concerned. This live recording from the group's Japanese tour finds them in great shape, performing several songs from the re-union album, as well as new versions of songs from their early 1970s recordings. This great set of songs is beautifully performed, with superb sound quality. It is hard to determine if the passing time simply mellowed their once young and tormented souls, but they did grow up and aged well. Since one should allow artists to evolve and change, listening to this album one should "ignore" the band's past to some degree, giving it a fair chance. With this approach I'm sure this great music can be accepted on its own terms and admired for its own merits. Excellent stuff!

1 comment: