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In & Out of Focus Import


Price: £13.18
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Frequently Bought Together

In & Out of Focus + Moving Waves + Focus 3
Price For All Three: £34.22

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Product details

  • Audio CD (30 Jun. 1998)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Pidm
  • ASIN: B000006YR5
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 701,506 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

53 of 54 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 14 Oct. 2002
Format: Audio CD
A sunset never blazed so brightly – the penultimate Focus album was their most perfectly achieved statement, a beautifully composed and produced celebration of the Akkerman/van Leer partnership at a creative, if not social, peak. A real synthesis of their musical strengths – crunching riffs, memorable tunes, classical motifs, whimsy, humour, and those carmine Akkerman guitar runs threading the whole thing together. Brief lute & flute appetiser Delitae Musicae is followed by Harem Scarem, a buoyant jeu d’esprit with a nice boogieish piano riff and clipped, sparky guitar. La Cathédrale de Strasbourg is a lazy evocation of youthful van Leer camping holidays, a sweet vaguely choral melody and an atmosphere of churchbell summeriness. Birth is a powerful flute-led trip into a melting pot of Akkerman’s musical influences, and the long concluding suite Hamburger Concerto blends more great tunes than you can shake a plectrum at into a rich, resplendent panorama of the group’s intermeshed interests and skills.
Well, the watery, dispirited Mother Focus album was to follow, and the colourful scrapbook Ship of Memories, but Hamburger Concerto was really where an intriguing musical journey came to an end on the rocks of agitated egos: both Akkerman (especially) and van Leer (occasionally) were to go on to produce interesting work, but little with such joyous coherence.
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29 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Andy Millward VINE VOICE on 6 July 2001
Format: Audio CD
Another classic from my mid-70's vinyl collection! There are so many good moments from this album, it's astonishing it became buried in obscurity. For the uninitiated, it's very much what you'd expect from Focus - high quality virtuoso instrumentals centring on Ackermann's dazzling guitar and van Leer's atmospheric organ and flute solos, plus the odd bit of pompous and whacky vocal improvisation thrown in for good measure.
At their best, Focus write funky songs with catchy hooks and neo-classical touches that betray their musical upgbringing. Listen to the guitar/flute interplay on Birth and Hamburger Concerto. Great stuff!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Hamish Vaughan on 18 Mar. 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Having been a Focus fan from their early years until the present, I am in the process of purchasing their albums on CD to save any further wear on the original vinyl LP's. This 1974 album sounds fine on CD with Thijs Van Leer's classic compositions "Harem Scarem" and "La Cathedral De Strasbourg" among the highlights. The current Focus line-up still plays these tunes live. Jan Akkerman's "Birth" is a heavier offering with a thundering backbeat provided by British drummer Colin Allen who had just replaced Pierre Van Der Linden. "Hamburger Concerto" itself, rather like the earlier "Eruption" on "Moving Waves" took up the whole of side 2 on the original LP and showcases all the Focus trademarks of stinging guitar, haunting flute and organ solos. There is the additional bonus track of "Early Birth", a slimmed down version of "Birth" which adorned the B-side of the shortened "Harem Scarem" single which unfortunately wasn't a hit. All in all, classic Focus, and my only reason for not giving 5 starts is the CD packaging. Surely Red Bullet could have included some sleeve notes, interviews with band members or at least the original band photos which were on the inside of the original album jacket.
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29 of 33 people found the following review helpful By John Ferngrove TOP 500 REVIEWER on 13 Mar. 2010
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I was reminded of this classic album just recently when I made the delightful discovery that the opening theme of the side-long title-track, Hamburger Concerto, was in fact a straight lift of a piece by Haydn, known as St Anthony's Chorale. I discovered this by virtue of the fact that it provides the theme for Brahms' Variations on a Theme of Haydn, Op.56a, as heard on my newly acquired Brahms: The Symphonies etc. Needless to say Focus and Brahms take the theme into radically distinct territories, but such is my affection for the Focus version that I would not wish to be pressed to choose which of these musical marvels to be without. If we accept that the essence of the prog project was the attempt to import into the evolving rock idiom the methods, and perhaps even some of the values, of the grand classical tradition, then Focus provided one of the few examples of genuine and authentic success in that effort. Even at the time one could feel that this was a swansong effort, with moody and restless guitar ace, Jan Akkerman, clearly having lost interest in the collaborative composition process with his flute and keyboard virtuoso counterpart, Thijs van Leer. Despite this growing rift however they left us with an album of terrific quality, having perfected a studio sound that could move easily between amazingly heavy and ethereally clean, and including, for me at least, two clear moments that rank among the finest in prog history.Read more ›
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By philip s bryant on 30 Nov. 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I remember this album from my youth in the 70s ...... Went to see FOCUS live the other night and they were brilliant...... Unfortunately there are only two members left...... Thjis Van Leer and Pierre Van Der Linden but it was Focus I listened to live the other night...... They were brilliant live and this album is also brilliant
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