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on 24 April 2010
I discovered JADE WARRIOR through the VERTIGO Double Vinyl Album Sampler "Suck It And See" from 1973. A track entitled MWENGA SKETCH appeared on this set, which is a lively & heavy dose of Santana-esq beats going from heavy to soft and to heavy again. The details of the track were not specified to a new album release by this UK progressive rock band, only described as COMING SOON/TO BE RELEASED by the label. Unfortunately, with poor sales and lack of interest and promotion of their previous albums, Vertigo decided to withdrew their contract with them, and the sample track, followed by material for the next two albums were shelved, never to be released, with the band immediately changing label (ISLAND) and direction. The guitarist TONY DUHIG sadly passed away in 1990, and much interest to release the bands rare recordings by the other group members had begun, only to have taken some years to have ECLIPSE released by a re-issue company (ACME) and to have the album fully remastered and with original artwork that was to be used if released in the 70s.

The Album re-release was deleted and is very rare. It was the decision by European label REPERTOIRE to again release ECLIPSE, as well as the other album recorded at the same time, entitled FIFTH ELEMENT, which was the band's final album, with a mix of Heavy and soft sounds, compared to their new softer direction on the ISLAND label.

Overall, my opinion on ECLIPSE, is an amazing experience....their debut and second album work towards the direction of soft to heavy melodic sounds, with the volume slightly turned down. By the third, and classic album, LAST AUTUMN'S DREAM, they managed to mix both the heavy/soft sound pretty well, but there is still the element of creating lengthy peaceful & dreamy tracks. On ECLIPSE, the volume has been turned up, especially on tracks SANGA, TOO MANY HEROES, HOLY ROLLER and the sample track from the Vertigo LP sampler....VERY HEAVY STUFF...! I don't think many fans of Jade Warrior have discovered this album, but are aware of it's existence, and i would seriously recommend purchasing a copy whether you're a fan of JW or Progressive Rock.
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