With the sleeve, title and typography to suggest nothing less than a Thin Lizzy in concert Lp, this excellent early 70s Atlantic Records soul-jazz compilation is almost comically desperate in its attempts to appeal to the callow youth weaned on Sixeventies Rock.
Barry Graves’ liner notes takes this notion several ludicrous steps further. To wit:
- Alright, you, push back your headphones and give me that Mick Jagger-type high camp look of disgust: ‘I don’t care about your jazz’. I should have guessed that Neil Young is stronger than blue notes.
- You burn incense at Jimi’s grave while the wind cries Mary, and you tell everybody that Pete Townshend is a close relative of yours. Why should you be bothered by jazz?
- You like flaming keyboards…and you wouldn’t mind being drowned by foaming tambourines and splashing congas?
- And then you catch a glimpse of Miles Davis, all high-heeled silver boots and red-hot bell bottoms, whipping it out under the magic spot-lights of the ‘Fillmore’.
- Today jazz can be caught wearing dashikis, flashing the peace sign, toying with Moog synthesizers, getting all those space-out freaks back to dancing and displaying as much soul as you need to make black look beautiful.
- Modern jazz sound[s] now!, ‘together’, ‘far out’ [and has] got itself electrified by Hendrix and 16-tracked by rock stereo ingenuity to maintain the vitality of the young.
- The skilfulness of its musicians is combed Afro-style and sports hippie beads, their creative power knows the headlines by heart.
- Etc., etc., etc.
Despite its vintage, only one track, Herbie Hancock’s Ostinato, sounds at all post-Bitches Brew. Most of the rest rely on the boogie beat and/or raga drone to supply their modernism. Flutes prevail on several selections. All are worthwhile.
Thrifty Thrifty Vinyl readers needn’t be alarmed by the £5 sticker on the cover. I paid £2 for this last Sat.