Henry Cow - Leg End (Original Mix)

Year of Release: 1999
Label: East Side Digital
Catalog Number: n/a
Format: CD
Total Time: 41:02:00

Henry Cow was and is, in my own humble thinking, one of the best R.I.O. (that's Rock In Opposition) - no, one of the best bands of all time. They've been thrown in with the "progressive rock movement" of the 70s. To say this sells them a little short. They did cover and emulate such forms as the classical and free-jazz movements. After all, besides the usual guitar, bass, keys and drums, they had saxes, flutes, recorders, clarinet, violin and violas.

So on this, their first album, they introduce themselves on a piece called "Nirvana for Mice," which has a jazzier feel. Then the next track, which "Nirvana..." bleeds into without fade, is "Amygdala," which continues the feel established before. Moving into "Teenbeat Introduction" and "Teenbeat" has more use of voice than before. The next piece "Extract from With the Yellow Hole Moon and Blue Star" (whew!), begins with guitar and flute together - very nice - then the whole band kicks in. "Teenbeat Reprise" has [Fred] Firth soloing. "The Tenth Chaffinch" has a "free" violin solo and talking - the more avant-garde touch. The last track "Nine Funerals of the Citizen King" is the singing track. The content of the song is about the downfall of the "system." Henry Cow were "leftist" throughout their career, but I find that doesn't distract from the music.

All in all, a great debut album. Orginally released on Virgin (yes, that one) (1973) now re-released on East Side Digital, this is a great purchase. Highly recommended for those who want to know what Rock In Opposition means. Get the remastered version not the re-mix, someone recently told me to get the re-mix, but I'm not buying.

[There are additional tracks on the remixed version, also released by East Side Digital. This "original mix" was in response tot he "re-mix" -ed.]

Nirvana For Mice (4:53) / Amygdala (6:47) / Teenbeat Introduction (4:32) / Teenbeat (6:57) / Extract From 'With The Yellow Half Moon And Blue Star' (2:26) / Teenbeat Reprise (5:07) / The Tenth Chaffinch (6:06) / Nine Funerals Of The Citizen King (5:34)

Fred Frith - guitar, keyboards, piano, viola, violin, and vocals
Chris Cutler - drums, piano, toy instruments, trumpet, vocals, whistle (instrument)
Tim Hodgkinson - keyboards, clarinet, organ, piano, sax (alto), saxophone, vocals
Jack Baines - wind
Jeremy Baines - pixiephone
Lindsay Cooper - bassoon
John Greaves - bass, piano, vocals, whistle (instrument)
Dagmar Krause - vocals
Geoff Leigh - clarinet, flute, recorder, sax (alto), sax (tenor), saxophone, vocals

Leg End (aka Legend) (1973/1999)
Unrest (1974/1999)
Desperate Straights (1975)
In Praise Of Learning (1975)
Concerts (1976)
Western Culture (1978/2001)
Stockholm & Göteborg (2008)
The Road, Vols. 1-5 (2009)
The Road, Vols. 6-10 (2009)
The Studio, Vol. 1-5 (2009)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin UK

Added: December 1st 2000
Reviewer: Jason Clemons

Artist website: www.ccutler.com/ccutler/
Hits: 1512
Language: english


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