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on 26 July 2016
Well.it's a fine album,the one that cemented my status as a diehard fan,following Bless the Weather.The additional material is good,not to my mind essential for the most part,the alrenate Solid Air surely misdescribed.Rehearsal,possibly,but never seriously an alternative to the used take? Some instrumental versions,one even sounding to me like the Grateful Dead,in their slightly funky period.I'm not complaining,and more JM is welcome,always.Well worth the purchase price,and my opinions are of course,my own.I'm a huge fan,but don't embrace every cough and spit recorded,just because of that fact,and try to view the excluded material as realistically as possible.It was on the cutting room floor for a reason.Maybe some unfairly,some not,in my view.But if you're going to get Solid Air,get the deluxe,and judge for yourself.
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on 7 July 2015
I was not always a fan of John Martyn until my sister brought home the LP way back in the 70s. Just the cover alone drew me in firstly, but the music initially did not. It took a few plays for me to understand the complexities of John's lyrics and his music. Some people list him as a folk artist, but he is diverse in his style with Blues and Jazz influence obvious in his playing. Favourite tracks for me, are the title track "Solid Air", "I'd Rather Be The Devil" and "Over The Hill", but none of the others on the album are bad, just different from each other. Not an easy listen for the un-initiated but if you get the chance to listen to the whole album a few times and REALLY listen to each of the tunes you will be entranced by this excellent musician. The only downside would be that, as a CD, the inner sleeve notes and lyrics are difficult to read as opposed to the LP, which I still have. Something that modern music lovers miss that us oldies took for granted.
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on 15 December 2017
THE classic John Martyn album. If you only wanted one of JMs cds this has to be it! However, I would any music lover to buy them all!
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on 14 April 2007
From the lilting, drowsy title track, through the smoky jazz of Go Down Easy, through the mellow West Coast vibe of May You Never (covered by Clapton on Slowhand) to the soulful pop of Man In The Station (revisited by Ian Matthews on his brilliant Stealin' Home album in 1978), Martyn addresses almost every musical genre with ease and accomplishment. In the hands of a less able musician/songwriter, it could have been a directionless mess but Martyn gathered great musicians around him and wove this seamless blend of glorious music. There's country, soul, pop, jazz, blues and some digestible rock in these 40 minutes. It's perfect for late night listening and equally perfect for bowling along the motorway at 70mph.

Every track has a mesmerizing quality to it. Just think of this: I'd Rather Be The Devil is delivered with a growly blues vocal over a thumping riff. Take away the vocals and, amazingly, the music that remains could be the soundtrack to a Sci-Fi movie. That's how brilliant he was.. and he was only 25.

Few albums are truly essential; let's allow Revolver, Let It Bleed, Ziggy Stardust, The Kick Inside etc as albums that demand attention by simply being so different and assertive. Add Solid Air to the list now.
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on 28 March 2009
I came to `Solid air' after buying and listening to `Grace and Danger` and I have to say, of the two, I prefer this album , although both are required listening in John Martyns back catalogue. The opening track `Solid Air' is a powerful way to open an album and sets the tone for what is to come. The accompanying bass on this album adds to the jazz/folk feel and ambiance of the music and coupled with John's guitar playing and poetic lyrics you are soon held spellbound by the music on offer. The live version of `I'd Rather Be the Devil' is an awe inspiring way to end an album and leaves you on a high after the journey this CD takes you on. John's smooth vocals, unique playing and song writing weave together perfectly on this album to create a piece of music that is able to be enjoyed again and again and it hasn`t seemed to date too badly at all. This is a great album and one I'd recommend if you are new to John Martyn and fancy giving him a try, you shouldn't be disappointed.

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on 19 March 2013
The majority of tracks on this album are outstanding, my favourites being the title track, "I'd rather be the devil" (especially the extended version on disk 2) and "The man in the station". The original, and quite short, album recording is on disk 1. Disk 2 contains different recordings of all of these tracks, plus several extra tracks, giving a much lengthier recording than disk 1. "Solid Air" is not only one of the very best John Martyn albums but also one of the very best albums of all time. If you are in any way discerning of music, then this is simply a must for the collection.
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on 29 January 2013
A fish supper at my local chippy costs more than this cd does and lasts around 15 minutes before its gone forever. Its a wonderful crazy world in which you can get a lifetime of listening pleasure of this standard for this amount of money. There are hundreds of great albums out there. Then there are a few that sit just above, on their own. This is one of the latter. Its almost impossible to pick highlights because the quality throughout is so high. Has been in my top ten for decades and having just updated to the CD version, does not look in danger of being bumped down the list anytime soon. Is in my view a strong contender as the greatest album ever produced by a Scottish artist/s. If you don't have it - buy it! (It goes well with chips and pretty much everything else).
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on 13 May 2013
Had not heard this until I saw a TV documentary on John Martyn and just had to buy it afterwards. The fact that there are different versions on the second CD make it even better. Love the echoplex and yet it is just one of those albums which is a one off and that stands the test of time. Played it for about aweek having got it and really loved it. IYou can come back ito it anytime and still be captivated by it.
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on 11 June 2015
I bought this cd to see if i liked John Martyn,I got the impression this is his best work.having listened to it a few times decided I like some tracks,others are ok but nothing special,its a case of personal preferences.like any cd I would advise anyone to listen to samples and decide for themselves
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on 14 April 2018
Excellent a firm favourite!
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