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Solid Bond

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Album Review

This rather odd double LP is a patchy, yet good assortment of '60s material that Bond did not put out during that decade, and which remains unavailable on any other release. Nine of the 12 tracks date from 1966, with Bond accompanied by Dick Heckstall-Smith on sax and Jon Hiseman on drums (Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker had by this time left to join Cream). Most of those nine songs are not on the two proper albums he issued in the '60s (The Sound of '65 and There's a Bond Between Us), and though a few did appear on those albums and non-LP singles, these recordings are different versions. While not up to the level of the best cuts waxed by the Bruce/Baker lineup, these Hiseman/Heckstall-Smith-backed numbers are still solid jazzy R&B with that aura of faint menace unique to Bond's mid-'60s work. His singing is particularly effective in its drawn-out anguish on "It's Not Goodbye" and "Springtime in the City" has those uneasy descending chord progressions and creepy R&B black-mass organ that were Bond specialties. "Neighbour Neighbour" and "Walkin' in the Park" aren't as good as the versions he did with Bond and Baker on the first two Graham Bond Organization LPs, but they're different enough to merit hearing. The three remaining songs were done in 1963 with Bruce, Baker, Heckstall-Smith, and John McLaughlin, and are long, straight jazz pieces that are much different in nature. Historically they're interesting, particularly in their documentation of the period in which McLaughlin (who solos well, though his free jazz style was a long way off in coming) was in the band. However, Bond's outfit became much more distinguished as an R&B group than they were as an average jazz one, making the 1963 material more of a curiosity than a highlight of his discography.

Customer Reviews

"Bottled In Bond!"

.."The Graham Bond Organization Finishing School!"..Like his fellow British Bandleaders; Alexis Korner & John Mayall; Graham Bond is more remembered today for all of the Clever Cats who started out with him; Then anything he himself did!-A Melting Pot of Blues; R&B; Trad and Free Jazz; Graham Bond can be credited for giving rise to: Cream & The Mahavishnu Orchestra; Among others!-Like an English "Booker T. & The M.G.'s"; Graham Bond's Door was open to Musicians who wanted something more than trying to emulate "The Liverpool Sound" and the Pop Trendiness of the Day!-"It's Not Goodbye; Graham!"-Dig This Disc!...by Grimmbo.

Biography

Born: October 28, 1937 in Romford, Essex, England

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '70s

An important, underappreciated figure of early British R&B, Graham Bond is known in the U.S., if at all, for heading the group that Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker played in before they joined Cream. Originally an alto sax jazz player — in fact, he was voted Britain's New Jazz Star in 1961 — he met Bruce and Baker in 1962 after joining Alexis Koerner's Blues Incorporated, the finishing school for numerous British rock and blues musicians. By the time he, Bruce, and Baker split to form...
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Solid Bond, Graham Bond
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