Brand X - "Fusion"
My main focus, when rating and reviewing a disc is: "How much do I love this music?"
I don't worry much about the categorization of the music (which is largely subjective) or the date of its release, because, for me, the "pleasure factor" is the primary consideration.
My sole criteria is: is it a classic?
Does the music sound timeless?
BRAND X is, no doubt about it, one the most original unpredictable and timeless rock bands of the seventies jazz/rock fusion scene.
Made of British musicians that are technical virtuosos at their respective instruments, they are inspired as song-smiths and talented as dynamic performers.
They were around for quite a while, touring the world on Jazz and Prog-Rock bills and releasing eight studio albums, three live albums and five compilation discs from 1975 to today.
Their best album for me, is the one called: Masques.
The line-up for Masques is:
John Goodsall - rock n' roll guitar
Percy Jones - fretless jazz bass
Morris Pert - exotic sounds & percussion
Chuck Burgi - drum set
J. Peter Robinson - keyboards & synthesizer
All of the songs on this disc are INSTRUMENTAL ONLY.
If you like Jazz mixed with Rock then great, but there are also atmospheric soundtrack elements at work here also.
For example; the ethereal "Deadly Nightshade," the ebullient "Earth Dance," and the gorgeous and delicate "Black Moon."
"The Poke" and "Access to Data" are exciting balls-out instrumental rock jams!
As a band their sound on this album leads the listener down many winding, weird and wondrous paths, with complex rhythms and time signatures.
Throughout it all, their sense of unity, phrasing and orchestration is impeccable. These are passionate, flawless musicians.
Brand X was as influential in their heyday as Mahavishnu, Herbie Hancock, Weather Report, Jean-Luc Ponty, and Return To Forever.
That said, if you have an open musical mind, and room for diversity in your collection, you'll grow to really appreciate this fabulously-talented band's unique, eclectic 'brand' of 'x-traordinary' music.
MASQUES is the best way to commence your musical journey into the Brand X discography.
Add your favorite herbal tea or cannabis strain to lift your mind and soul to where they are musically.
Best listened to when all alone, and you have 45 minutes to yourself to explore your own imagination.
Lights off, quiet please.
Ladies & Gentlemen...Brand X
Edited by James Clark