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Sunday, March 15, 2015

Brian Auger And The Trinity - Befour (1970 uk, brilliant jazzy prog rock, SHM 2013 remaster with extra tracks)

Brian Auger and his band outdo themselves on this extraordinary album, which boasts playing that is both passionate and of virtuoso caliber, and encompasses just the right repertory. From the opening of the soaring rendition of "I Wanna Take You Higher" through the jazzy interpretation of Gabriel Faure's Pavane, the Albinoni-based Adagio per Archi e Organo, the impassioned rendition of Traffic's "No Time to Live" (sung by lead guitarist Gary Boyle), and the smooth interpretation of Herbie Hancock's "Maiden Voyage" (featuring some elegant lead playing by Boyle before Auger's organ moves into the foreground), Befour delivers superb musicianship, crossing the lines between jazz and rock with touches of soul and even some lingering traces of psychedelia. 

The one fully experimental track, "Listen Here," which was cut in a single take of nine-minutes-and-22-seconds, is a hard, pounding piece driven by Boyle's jagged lead guitar and showing off the band augmented by three additional drummers (Mickey Waller, Barry Reeves, and Colin Allen) and an extra bassist (Roger Sutton) -- it reminds one somewhat of the kinds of experiments that the Nice sometimes attempted a lot less successfully. "Just You and Me" is a worthy finale to the original album, a hard-rocking showcase for each of the players.
by Bruce Eder

1. I Want To Take You Higher (Sylvester Stewart) - 5:08
2. Pavane (Gabriel Fauré) - 3:49
3. No Time To Live (Jim Capaldi, Steve Winwood) - 5:27
4. Maiden Voyage (Herbie Hancock) - 5:03
5. Listen Here (Eddie Harris) - 9:26
6. Adagio Per Archi E Organo (Brian Auger) - 3:30
7. Just You Just Me (Brian Auger) - 6:31
8. Rain Forest Talking (Live) (Brian Auger) - 4:07
9. Pavane (Demo Version) (Gabriel Fauré) - 3:44
10.Fire In The Mind (Previously Unreleased) (Brian Auger) - 4:47
11.Pavene (Live) (Gabriel Fauré) - 4:49
12.I Got Some (Live) (Brian Auger) - 5:02

Brian Auger And The Trinity
*Brian Auger - Keyboards, Electric Piano, Organ, Vocals
*Gary Boyle - Guitar, Vocals, Harmony Vocals
*Dave Ambrose - Bass, Harmony Vocals
*Clive Thacker - Drums, Harmony Vocals
*Colin Allen - Bass, Drum Rhythms, Bells,
*Roger Sutton - Bottom Bass Line
*Barry Reeves - Snare Drum, Cowbell
*Mickey Waller - Cymbals

Brian Auger's Oblivion Express
1970 Brian Auger's Oblivion Express (2013 Japan SHM edition)
1971  A Better Land (2006 japan remaster)
1972  Second Wind (2006 japan remaster)
1973  Closer To It (2006 japan remaster) 
With Julie Driscoll
1967  Open (2013 Japan SHM)
1970  Streetnoise  (2014 SHM)

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