Customer Review

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another (almost) Forgotten Band, 29 April 2013
This review is from: Velvet Mountain: An Anthology 1970-1972 (Audio CD)
I was lucky enough to see Cochise in Manchester supporting Creedence Clearwater Revival on what was to b etheir last Uk tour. I'd never heard of Cochise till then, but they played a blinder resulting in me rapidly purchasing "Swallow Tales", their second and to me, best album. A strange and intrigu ing beast....bits of country, psychedelia and even a rocky shuffle with a killer chorus, "Why I Sing The Blues", which could even have been a hit single if it had been released in that format. On it they are aided and abetted by the unmistakable tones of Steve Marriot who also hammers the ivories. Fine vocals from new singer John Gilbert, gritty Strat from Mick Grabham and the lovely bass / drums team of Rick Wills and Willie Wilson throughout, not to mention fab songwriting. Despite my aversion to Brits singing songs about cowboys etc, I still loved it. The genesis of some of the subject matter may have come from moves to make them the English Burrito Bros as I understand it, but the Burrito's would never have come up with anything like "Strange Images", nor would they have wanted to given Gram Parsons antipathy to the "Mind Gardens" aspect of song writing.

Next I got their third and last album "So Far", a lot rockier and funkier, good, tightly played, but the slight quirky weirdness of the previous album (mostly attributable to pedal steel player extraordinaire BJ Cole) was missing and the fantastic Willie Wilson had been replaced by Roy O'Temro, a troubled spirit by all accounts, but another fine drummer. Not a bad album, but a bit run of the mill. It was this line up of the band I saw live, and a shot of them at a gig looking as I remember them at the Free Trade Hall graced a rather workmanlike cover.

Last I got their first album with the naughty sleeve, reproduced as the front cover to this compilation. I had to sneak it into the house as I'd been told by my mum this was a sleeve too far. It's a more folky affair, charming in its way with original singer Stewart Brown's warm vocals taking the lead. It's not as together musically as the latter two albums, but it has its moments and exudes a pleasing period charm.

So...four stars, though Swallow Tales alone would deserve five. A great buy for the price. And I still play the vinyl to this day! I commend this for your investigation....and whatever became of the excellent John Gilbert? Most of the others went on to greater things...Procul Harem, Foreigner, session pedal steel to the stars...Dave Gilmour...so what happened to John?!
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 6 May 2013 19:47:11 BDT
Kippax says:
Hello there, I was there too at The Free Trade Hall,I was realley impressed by Cochise & can still remeber "Home Again" as my favourite tune.
Great times,great music.Come next payday I will be adding this to my collection. Cheers.

In reply to an earlier post on 8 May 2013 17:06:13 BDT
It was a great night all round, Home Again is probably my favourite Cochise song!
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