13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars beautiful and sometimes strange
Jack Bruce returns to the fray with a challenging and superb album. His early solo work set the bar incredibly high. Harmony Row is one of the finest of all rock albums, with Songs for a Tailor and Out of the Storm not far behind. His more recent work received less aclaim and had fewer listeners, yet More Jack than God and Monkjack, for example, repay multiple listens and...
Published 5 months ago by Mark Robinson
3 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Higher Expectations
Despite the mega stardom of his bandmate Eric Clapton, I've always seen Jack Bruce as the far better musician. I have most of his albums, including the phenomenal 6 disc box set. In looking at the reviews, I sense a bit of "the emperor's new clothes." Drones, for example, may be art, but it really is unlistenable. And the two previously released numbers were...
Published 3 months ago by Burton J. Cohen
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars beautiful and sometimes strange,
Jack Bruce returns to the fray with a challenging and superb album. His early solo work set the bar incredibly high. Harmony Row is one of the finest of all rock albums, with Songs for a Tailor and Out of the Storm not far behind. His more recent work received less aclaim and had fewer listeners, yet More Jack than God and Monkjack, for example, repay multiple listens and contain outstanding songs. Silver Rails comes after a gap of ten years during which Bruce has toured with his Big Blues Band and Spectrum Road, and released music with Robin Trower. Still, since Jack has had his health troubles his followers may have wondered whether more new songs would come.
The new songs are moving, they have something to say, sung from experience, and they make us feel it, there is superb musicianship and great musical variety. There is a progression from early reflective songs that consider love, addiction and mortality, (Candlight, Reach for the Night and Fields of Forever) to later songs showing compassion for victims of corporate political greed, military industrial terror, and deindustrialisation (Rusty Lady, Industrial Child, Drone). Hope seems to lie in the spaces where the human spirit persists away from power (Hidden Cities). The finest moments do not simply recreate familiar idioms but explore and surprise with their invention. The final songs - reworked Keep It Down and No Surrender rock out to speak of unquenched spirit after difficult and unpredicted life journeys.
Jack's voice sounds that of an older man, but remains, although at moments frail, unique and beautiful, an enduring instrument used with great skill to evoke passions. His piano on Industrial Child and Don't Look Now is a delight. His bass remains that of a master. The musicians such as his blues band colleagues Frank Tontoh, and Tony Remy, jazz drenched Spectrum Road partners John Medeski and Cindy Blackman Santana, illustrious guitarists Robin Trower and Bernie Marsden, and family members including Malcolm Bruce all rise to the challenge of music that takes strikingly diverse paths, songs starting in familiar genres (jazz, folk, rock, calypso/ska, blues) but twisting inventively and imaginatively away from the well-trodden track to evoke imaginative freedom. It is moving that Jack has included all his family on the record, a serious creative work. The lyrics from Pete Brown, in particular, are accessible and poetic, their reflective narratives complementing the music perfectly. Jack has cited David Bowie's The Next Day as an inspiration. Silver Rails deserves at least such acclaim. Here is a great artist whose many musical achievements deserve a wider audience. This record leaves us wanting more.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jack Bruce Silver Rails,
This in my view is an exceptional album. Obviously this is only my opinion, but there isn't a bad track on the album. It's almost as if it is a continuation of Songs For A Tailor, the album he made back in 1969. It has the same style and feel. The production is superb and quite frankly I can't fault this album in any way.
It isn't like his last jazz album at all, but it does have some of the musicians from that album on this one. This is much more rock than jazz. It's a truley great album.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A legend returns,
Although best known for his stint with the legendary powertrio Cream perhaps Jack Bruce's strongest time was in the first half of the 70s. Producing an unsurpassed trilogy of strong solo-albums ("Songs For A Tailor", "Harmony Row", "Out Of The Storm") and playing on groundbreaking albums like Carla Bley's "Escalator Over The Hill" and "Turn It Over" (Tony William's Lifetime).
Since those golden days Jack has certainly continued making music of the highest calliber without quite reaching the same heights. So it's nice to be able to say that here at 70 he has made a strong musical statement, despite some serious health problems due to a near fatal liver transplantant in 2003.
Jack has always been a restless soul and a true multitasking musician. Not only a groundbreaking bass virtuoso but also an excellent keyboardplayer. And having one of the finest voices in contemporary music. A searching musical mind mastering almost all genres from avantgarde to heavy rock. True to form with "Silver Rails" he has made yet another diverse outing, helped by friends like Uli Jon Roth, Robin Trower, Cindy Blackman Santana, John Medeski a.m.o.. And reunited with long time partner lyricist Pete Brown who has written some deep words. An album consisting of 8 new tracks of ususal high standard plus two 'oldies': "Keep It Down" ("Out Of The Storm") and "No Surrender" ("A Question Of Time").
How time will judge this album compared to the masterworks of his younger days who knows? But he certainly shows - like recent releases from Paul McCartney, David Crosby, John McLaughlin - that there is indeed life and creativity after 70.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly expected highly appreciated,
Well to put it clear, I am one of that hardcore fans who like to like and dislike honestlly - result is I was unabled to make comments on the facebook of JB due to probably persisitent creative comments> Bottomline there are so many things still in the vaults hidden - a real pity. Recently I got sounboard bootleg Live in Hyda Park 1971 with Chris Spedding, Graham Bond, John Marshall and Art Themen. Well you could get better live recordings of the group in 1971 like 3 cd BBC live or Live at Test etc however I was blown away listening hard to the damned soundboard - Third degree (guess not available at that time), One word (Lifetime), Professor Wife Detector (Escalator over the hill) - unbelievable. Ok now we have the silver rails. 2 years ago Jack recorded Spectrum road and it was fantastic however his voice deteriorated by age (still love it). I am particularly pleased with hidden places and other slow pianos plus Drone, 2 last songs are not filler - rerecording them with new musicians is a real treat. Jack well done. Besides 30m DVD making of fantastic and to the point presenting all contributors. God bless.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb Album, Superb Musicians !!! Buy it !!!,
Jack Bruce has spent a lifetime producing fantastic music on record and especially live. This is a memorable album featuring some incredible musicians both young and old. A few months ago we had another "veteran", David Bowie, coming up with a gem. Silver Rails is even better.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More Jack than before,
I'm a happy man with this new Jack's album. This album like other Jack's albums reveal emotion and expressive style in create music. Songs are made with passion and this is wonderful opus. Thanks Jack once again.
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb Jack Bruce,
My album of the year without a doubt. There is really no way to pigeon hole this collection of songs. Jazz, rock, blues; it's impossible to put a label on this superb collection. Let's just say it is Jack Bruce at his very best. If you're familiar with his music, you will know what I mean. If you're not, give it a try.
4.0 out of 5 stars Jack back to business.....as usual,
Jacks been my bass hero since 1967. I enjoy all of his music.......This is a good buy for bass enthusiasts.
4.0 out of 5 stars Another great album by a great musician,
This review is from: Silver Rails [VINYL] (Vinyl)
I have to say, I expected something a little different. I mean after seeing the preview videos and knowing what musicians would be participating, I was expecting something more Cream-like.
Don't take that as a negative point, Silver Rails is a great album, full of great tracks and musicians.
Not exactly, but following the vein of Bruce's first (and best) solo work (Songs for a Tailor), Silver Rails have some kind of progness to it.
I'd really recommend this album to anyone who likes Jack Bruce's music and Pete Brown's Lyrics, but don't expect a heavy (and loosely psychedelic) blues-rock album. Just open up your mind, put this record on and expect some peace of mind.
4.0 out of 5 stars Must have from the master of his art,
I very much worry that this might be one of the very last works of Legend that is jack Bruce - for that alone it deserves every attention. The record itself is excellent. It floats effortlessly between blues-rock, prog-rock to rock. It never panders to any cliché and the creative soul of Jack is connecting with yours from the first bar. Medeski on Hammond/keys is a wonderful extra. His contribution,aside from the obvious keyboard genius, shows class. He enhances every song he plays on but without imposing himself on it. Another perfect balance was found between the music and the lyrical content. That is often complex and multilayered and requires total attention of the listener to fully come through. If there is any criticism - it might be levied on guitar parts, which are too often predictable.
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