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Closer to It [Import]

Brian Auger's Oblivion Express Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Audio CD (19 Sep 1995)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: One Way Records Inc
  • ASIN: B000002R7R
  • Other Editions: Audio CD
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,146,673 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Whenerver You're Ready
2. Happiness Is Just Around The Bend
3. Light On The Path
4. Compared To What
5. Inner City Blues
6. Voices Of Other Times

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars English prog jazz-rock 7 April 2012
By Simon
Format:Audio CD
The title of this 1973 album refers to Brian Auger's decade long quest for a perfect fusion of psychedelic rock, soul, funk and jazz, which began as he worked his way around the rhythm 'n' blues clubs of London's swinging sixties. There are plenty of other great Oblivion Express recordings available out there but this, I think, is the most rounded and complete.

The Oblivion Express sound is built around Auger's phenomenal skills on the Hammond B3 organ and Fender Rhodes piano and the jazz-influenced vocals of Alex Ligertwood. You get the feeling that they are essentially an English psychedelic rock band who heard "Bitches Brew" by Miles Davis and never looked back (hence the title of my review!). The album opens spectacularly with "Whenever You're Ready", a stunning six and a half minute Hammond-driven psychedelic jazz-rock wig-out under-pinned by an unrelenting, samba-tempo percussion.

As the title suggests, "Happiness Is Just Around The Bend" is a much lighter, poppier affair - a bonafied pop song that was apparently a massive radio hit on the sunny west coast of America at the time (despite never being released as a single). It is easy to see why with its infectious, chugging rhythm and Fender Rhodes coda. The song was later covered and given more of a disco-soul sound by The Main Ingredient and then re-emerged ten years later as a slice of Arthur Baker-produced Eighties club soul boogie by Cuba Gooding Jr.

"Light On the Path" is another jazz-rock fusion, this time a funky five minute instrumental. This is followed by "Compared To What", which is a 1970s update on the funky Hammond sound popularised by the likes of Jimmy Smith and much emulated by Brian himself in his 1960s London r'n'b club days.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars superb stuff !! 25 July 2009
Format:Audio CD
I have half a dozen CDs by Brian Auger, this is my favourite !
First bought it when it came out many moons ago, its as fresh
today as it was then! Straight forward organ music with acompanying
bass and drums - no brass . Also enjoyable vocals here and there.
Fully recommended !
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a classic 14 Jan 2009
Format:Audio CD
This is a classic album of its time and it's british, add this to your collection and be one of those in the know about how good Brian Auger is
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  6 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Auger's Best! 2 July 2001
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
My first exposure to Brian Auger was way back when I was a young teen and he did a version of Donovan's 'Season of the Witch', with Julie Driscoll & the Trinity. This would have been late 60's I believe. It became clear at that point that the man was a talented keyboardest & serious musician. The passing of many years has only added credence to my original impressions of Auger. Many talented musicians have passed through his various bands. Brian Auger has also appeared on many more recordings as a sideman. Those of you reading this are likely familiar with his work already. Despite his respected profile, he never did hit the 'big time' in the famous sense of the word. His was more of an underground cult following. Perhaps this is because some of his work is a little uneven. Auger's music, if it must be described, would best fit somewhere under a Jazz/Funk/Soul/Blues catagory. I haven't heard all his material, none the less I would bet that 'Closer To It', with his Oblivian Express band must be his best. The band lays down a mellow funk riff throughout and simply burns from there. I have worn out 2 LP's - the second I used only sparingly, not wishing to wear it out prematurly. Finally 3 or 4 years ago, the recording became available on CD. I could scarcly believe my good fortune. This isn't a popular CD, so you may have to wait for a special order. Don't let that deter you - it's worth the wait, at any cost. Be prepared: by the time you get mid way through playing it, your friends will be asking who that is on your stereo. 5 stars, without hesitation.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Seminal Fusion 4 Sep 2001
By David H. Fouch - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Along with Beaver and Krause, Jeff Lorber, and Weather Report "Closer To It" is one of the finest examples of early jazz-fusion. Auger's unique biting Hammond B-3 style was the envy of every serious in-the-know keyboard player I knew at that time. There were guys who would have sold their souls to peek at Brian's stop settings. Funny that he never made it any bigger than he did...
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars cooker 3 Dec 2005
By David H. Cook - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
This is more mellow than the first O.E. album,but I like it more. If you want something to put you in a good mood, or to keep a gathering mellow but moving, this will do it! I first got this on vinyl on original release (long time ago) and got it again when it came out on cd. Have never heard anyone say anything bad about it. If you want some feel good music and like Auger, it,s a must!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brian Auger: the finest keyboard player out there! 17 Nov 2004
By Scotty - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
This album is one of the best jazz/funk LP's ever! Like another reviewer, I wore out several of his albums in the 70's & 80"s. Thankfully it's available on CD now. Auger was and is the idol of all keyboard players from that era. He is truly a god!
5.0 out of 5 stars Acid Jazz circa 1972. Sounds as funky now as it did then. 10 Sep 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
A much underappreciated keyboardist, composer, producer who features the electric piano and the mighty Hammond B-3. Inner City Blues, Compared to What, and the original "hit" Happiness is Just Around the Bend (remember the Main Ingredient?). Sounds just as good in '99 as it did in '72. Required listening for Acid Jazz fans.
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