Friday, July 15, 2016

Focus - 1975 - Mother Focus

Focus
1975 
Mother Focus





01. Mother Focus (3:04)
02. I Need A Bathroom (3:05)
03. Bennie Helder (3:32)
04. Soft Vanilla (3:03)
05. Hard Vanilla (2:35)
06. Tropic Bird (2:43)
07. Focus IV (3:58)
08. Someone's Crying... What! (3:19)
09. All Together... Oh That! (3:42)
10. No Hang Ups (2:56)
11. My Sweetheart (3:36)
12. Father Bach (1:33)


- Thijs van Leer / keyboards, flutes, vocals
- Jan Akkerman / guitars
- Bert Ruiter / basses, vocals
- David Kemper / drums
- Colin Allen / drums


- Thijs van Leer / keyboards, flutes, vocals
- Jan Akkerman / guitars
- Bert Ruiter / basses, vocals
- David Kemper / drums
- Colin Allen / drums




Focus here featured virtuoso guitarist Jan Akkerman for the last time, not to work with his long-term writing partner Thijs Van Leer for another ten years. Mother Focus also sees Focus' highly skilled bass player Bert Ruiter try his hand in songwriting. The outcome includes the one of the finest funk tracks on the album -- the hilarious "I Need a Bathroom." The album begins with quite possibly the finest track on the album -- and maybe the most typical Focus -- the titular "Mother Focus." The funky theme underlying the number sets the mood for the rest of the LP with aplomb. Indeed, Mother Focus is far from the usual instrumental material. For this reason, Mother Focus may not appeal to the usual fans of the Dutch proggers. The number of feel-good tunes making up the album's core makes up for the lack of a rocking single in the style of "Hocus Pocus." A mellower, happier aura permeates the recording as a whole, particularly noticeable in the soothing "Tropic Bird." Undoubtedly, though, Mother Focus is let down by the lack of Akkerman's and Thijs' presence. The whole album cries out for one of them to jump out and take center stage for a while. Instead each track is filled with numerous melodies and rhythms, with only the occasional jaunt from Akkerman. Mother Focus is a fine album in its own right, but maybe not what one would be expecting when taking into account the progressive rock features of their earlier albums. Funk predominates in the last respectable Focus LP.

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