Rock On! Wednesday, 3 February – Roxy Music (Roxy Music, 10CC, Quatermass, Kevin Ayers, Sparks)

Psychedelic, heavy, prog and more innovating sounds spanning the late 60s and the early 70s – Wednesday December 23rd. Dan’s pick of the week: Roxy Music (Roxy Music), 10CC (10CC), Quatermass (Quatermass), Kevin Ayers (Whatevershebringswesing) & Sparks (A Woofer In Tweeter’s Clothing).

Roxy Music werd 50 jaar geleden opgericht door zanger en toetsenist Bryan Ferry die, samen met een aantal van zijn bandleden, van dezelfde Engelse kunstacademie afstamde als The Who en The Rolling Stones. Roxy Music voelde dan ook altijd conceptueel aan – ze waren doelbewust experimenteel, decadent en futuristisch, en er was altijd een opzettelijk visueel element in hun imago.

Zachary Hoskins van Spectrum Culture: “More to the point, Roxy’s self-titled debut is simply a great album. Few other groups have arrived on the scene with such a distinctive, fully-formed aesthetic: the ever-so-slightly queered glamour of cover model Kari-Ann Muller; the stilted, quavering vibrato of Ferry’s vocals and the art-damaged analogue synth noise of resident conceptualist Brian Eno. The album’s first half, in particular, is virtually without fault. Opening track “Re-Make/Re-Model” and lead single “Virginia Plain” are impeccable art-school proto-punk, the former exploding into a collage of two-bar instrumental quotes from the likes of “Day Tripper” and “Ride of the Valkyries.” “If There is Something” opens with a camp take on country-pop before mutating into an extended guitar and saxophone workout. “Ladytron” and “2HB,” meanwhile, concisely encapsulate Roxy’s prog-glam paradox: the former with its multiple movements, swathes of ponderous mellotron and Andy MacKay’s plaintive oboe solo (!); the latter with MacKay’s glossy saxophone and Ferry’s affected, Warholian tribute to Old Hollywood masculinity. (…)

Eno left soon after 1973’s For Your Pleasure, carrying the early Roxy’s experimental bent into his own solo albums, while Ferry took the remaining group in an ever-more stylized direction, ultimately out-glamouring glam rock itself. While the influence of Roxy’s first album extends far and wide, its precise ratio of cutting-edge pop and progressive rock bombast has never quite been replicated: it remains, in its way, one of a kind. All the more reason to rediscover it—or, for the truly lucky, discover it for the first time—now.”

Wednesday February 3rd, 12:00 noon CET Brussels – 11 a.m. GMT London. Repeated: 16:00 & 20:00 hrs CET Brussels, 3 p.m. & 7 p.m. GMT London
Ends: 12 midnight CET Brussels, 11 p.m. GMT London.

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