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This review is from: Fresh Ear (Audio CD)
1969 and Dave Dee wants to go solo, carrying on with the cabaret style pop his group are known for. The rest of the group totally unphased by this see it as an opportunity to get away from their pop singles image and like other artists around this time ie Marmalade and The Tremeloes make an artistic statement and receive critical acclaim with a serious attempt at a Rock album and thats exactly what they did with this little gem. Fresh Ear is a joy from beginning to end and shows what great musicians these guys were. To my ears it comes across like Abbey Road era Beatles mashed up with Crosby Stills and Nash and on opening track Mr President theres a great Keith Emerson style Lucky Man moog solo, also on this fab sounding repertoire reissue are 14 bonus tracks featuring contemporanious singles and tracks they recorded later in the 70s, even in 79 they were recording some really good power pop. Unfortunately as good as this album was it didn't translate into sales [once youv'e got an image its hard to shake it off] and by 1972 they split.
As a point of interest, in 1973 Tich [Fred Amey] and Beaky [John Dymond] teamed up with guitarist Peter Mason who had been helping Dave Dee out with his solo career and formed a group called Mason,they recorded a couple of singles and an eponymous album for the Dawn label but because the singles flopped the album didn't get released, that is until a few years ago when the master tapes were located and it was released for the first time on the Cherry Tree label. That album is a great slice of harmonious West Coast acoustic based rock and is also worthy of your attention.