terça-feira, 18 de março de 2008

JASPER - Liberation (Great UK Progressive Bluesrock 1969)

In the crowded underbrush of the late sixties British psych/blues scene Jasper was definitely at the head of its class. The quintet's personalized blues style, with Steve Radford's excellent lead-guitar lighting the way (punctuated also by their keen use of flute and harpsichord) is well expressed in the inspired version of 'Baby Please Don't Go' and 'Ain't no Peace'. Unfortunately soon after the release of their rare l969 debut album Liberation the group disbanded and disappeared from the scene. Miniature LP sleeve. Strings (courtesy of Henry Lowther and at times disturbingly out of key), dissonant flutes, half-competent guitars and a confusing array of mostly blues-based styles are the ingredients on this one-off album for Spark. Where the blues come out on top, there is nothing very special to attract the ear, apart from the fact that blues are often used not to express a blue state of mind, but rather to attempt to reflect some lost region of childlike innocence. Tribal rhythms are used throughout the album, to good effect especially on Confusion, the best cut. Otherwise the sound is often amateurish with many useless jams and repeats. Considering the low-key performances it is not easy to understand, why this has been so intensively sought-after, apart from its sheer rarity. To be filed under unnecessary purchases. It did come in a wonderfully psychedelic cover.

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