I wasn't expecting much. Despite Keef Hartley being a superb drummer, always surrounded by incredible musicians - including Henry Lowther on trumpet and Gary Thain on bass and making some seminally robust albums- I wasn't expecting much. Of course the musicianship is always top-notch but what about the sound quality...? Well, I needn't have worried. The musicianship is amazing and the sound quality excellent (and on the latter point, I am very fussy). The release includes material from their best albums (the first four - where Miller Anderson provided lead vocals) with the tracks being extended (particularly with more brass) than the original studio versions. the very small downside is that Spit James doesn't appear anywhere on this platter. [He was the lead guitarist on the incredible first album Halfbreed and a bit on the second...]. Anyway an essential purchase for any Keef fan which includes two tracks at the end from the Miller Anderson Band which fit in perfect. Essential. Robust stuff? Not 'arf!
Another of those great BBC recordings that make one wish they had been around in those days. John Mayall really knew how to pick guitar players and drummers. Keef Hartley band along with Jon Hiseman's Colosseum are just two of the many fine bands that came from the Mayall school of band leading. We also get to hear the fantastic Miller Anderson on this CD.
Do not be put off, (as I was initially), by the fact that this is an unofficial release. O.K, we've been spoilt by the excellent Esoteric remastering of the original DERAM tapes, but the sound quality on this disc is BBC standard, 9 out of 10. The performances are superb. If you like Keef and Miller Anderson, you need this disc. Hope they've got some tapes of Cado Belle in session.