Comebacks and reunions seldom yield truly essential albums. There are, of course, exceptions to this rule, and - as a devoted fan of the "classic" Renaissance - I am glad to say that "Tuscany" is one such rarity. It re-unites four fifths of the legendary mid-seventies Renaissance line-up - Annie Haslam, Michael Dunford and Terence Sullivan with John Tout guesting on several songs (main keyboardist here is a new boy Mickey Simmonds) - with a set of wonderful and fresh new compositions that make up a killer album. Also soundwise "Tuscany" is very much what one would expect from Renaissance. No orchestras, though, but the programmed string parts fortunately avoid sounding too synthetic so the lovely acoustic vibe of the band's trademark sound is largely retained. I think it is fair to say that this indeed is The Renaissance we fans have learned to love and it really feels good to have them back after all these years. The only missing ingredient is Jon Camp's huge bass, but due to the overall strength of the album there's not much point in moaning about that (especially as the guesting bass players Alex Caird and Roy Wood fit in very well). Somewhat inexplicably, given the quality of the album, "Tuscany" was initially released only in Japan last year, so it is about time to get it generally available. (Review based on the Japanese pressing on Toshiba-EMI).