Top Priority [Vinyl] Original recording remastered
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180 gram audiophile vinyl / Printed inner sleeve
About the Artist
Music On Vinyl proudly presents the second batch of classic Rory Gallagher albums. Rory Gallagher is perhaps the most important Blues-Rock multi-instrumentalist of the last century. The Irish guitar virtuoso played his instrument with great dedication and vigour. His live performances are the stuff of legend, and his legacy left a myriad of crucial albums. 1975 found Rory at the absolute top of his game and in sparkling form both in the studio and on stage. The next seven years saw the release of these five outstanding records: Against The Grain (1975), Calling Card (1976), Photo-Finish (1978), Top Priority (1979) and Jinx (1982). Each reissue has been re-mastered to stunning effect from the original ¼ inch tape and features the original restored album artwork with a printed inner sleeve.
Top Customer Reviews
Top Priority features the nine original tracks released in 1979 plus two bonus tracks. All have benefited greatly from re-mastering. The sound is more powerful and decisive than its original vinyl counterpart. Many of the tracks, including 'Follow Me,' 'Wayward Child' and 'Off the Handle,' became vital songs in Rory's live repertoire. Indeed, 'Follow Me' opens the album and sees Rory kicking off at an energetic pace. Others on Top Priority also display a fast-paced Rory concentrating on shorter 'to-the-point' rockers. These include 'At the Depot,' 'Just Hit Town' and the blistering 'Wayward Child,' which features some of the most fluid and inventive soloing that the Irishman has committed to tape. 'Keychain' and 'Off the Handle' fly the flag for Rory's trademark slow blues numbers and, whilst there are no acoustic offerings on this occasion, consolation can be found in the poignant and melancholic delivery of 'Bad Penny.' Even the two medium-paced bonus tracks, 'Hell Cat' and 'The Watcher,' are very welcome additions to the album.
Top Priority is a fine collection of blues-based rock songs that any one new to the Irish guitarist will not find disappointing. Tightly produced with creative soloing makes the album a great introduction to the world of Rory Gallagher and those familiar with his work won't be let down either!
"Top Priority" is one of five new 2012 CD, Download and Vinyl reissues covering Rory Gallagher's 'studio' album period at Chrysalis Records between 1975 and 1979. His Polydor Label years (1971 to 1974) were released in full in January 2012 (see list below). The next set of studio and live album reissues are due in early 2013 - all supervised by Donal Gallagher - his brother, tour manager and keeper of the flame.
So what's different? In a nutshell - cheaper price, restored artwork with upgraded packaging and 2012 remastering from the original tapes. Here are the finite details...
Released 24 September 2012 in the UK (9 October 2012 in the USA) - "Top Priority" is on Sony/Capo/Legacy 88725461452 and comes in a card digipak rather than a jewel case (46:40 minutes total playing time). The original vinyl album was released September 1979 in the UK and USA on Chrysalis CHR 1235 (it charted at number 56 in the UK and Number 140 in the States). "Top Priority" was his 4th studio LP for the British label - continuing on from the blisteringly good run of "Against The Grain" in 1975, "Calling Card" in 1976 and "Photo-Finish" in 1978.
When "Top Priority" was first re-issued on CD by Da Capo in February 1999 - the tapes were remixed and remastered by Tony Arnold - giving it a sound some found a little shrill. That first reissue also altered the original artwork. This time the original tapes have been returned to by ANDY PEARCE and MATT WORTHAM and remastered as 'untampered' versions in August 2012 at Wired Masters Studios in London. They've done a great job - the sound is very clear and muscular - still full of piss and vinegar for sure but less showy than before.Read more ›
I had forgotten just how accomplished this little-promoted collection is. My band used to perform Follow Me, and it's a great powerful surge to the record, with some quite extraordinary guitar pyrotechnics from Rory. It's actually got a very good tune, too, and it's fun to see Gerry McAvoy singing harmonies on the chorus on the Live At Cork video - with Rory and Gerry cracking up when they get the sequence wrong! Philby continues Rory's fascination with spies, molls and the underworld and then the whole album continues with a collection of Rory's usual interests, all performed well.
I gather that the collection was recorded in a very short time and occasionally the production values are not perfect. What is nearly perfect is the playing. Rory is on fire, and, as always, his faithfull band is exemplary. This CD is a timely reminder of just how exceptional Rory and his bands were, and the new wave of punk thrashers would do very well to listen to his control, dynamics, words and, it has to be said, incredible ability. They won't, of course, and will continue to deafen and batter their teeny audience into submission which is a great shame - because my 13 year old daughter is going around singing Follow Me and she is the winner.
A lovely CD. Not a duff moment, really.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Another excellent album by Rory Gallagher. The remastered cd sounds great.Published 23 days ago by Stergios
Love this album! Second album i ever bought, and still as good as then.Published 9 months ago by Kristian Ziegler
I had this in a kind of box set, 5 cd's in a sleeve, I wanted the remastered one so I had the sleeve notes which I didn't have. Read morePublished on 10 Dec. 2013 by D. J. Wilden
It is good ,clean ,cut rock, and Rory although not in top form but certainly away from the pack .the Japanese version is excellent.Published on 23 Jun. 2013 by GAK
My brother in law asked for this as a present. I've never listened to it and never will, but he says it's great!Published on 19 Jun. 2013 by Ravey Davey