Learn more Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Learn More Shop now Learn more Shop Fire Shop Kindle New Edition - Sgt. Pepper Shop now Shop Women's Shop Men's
Customer Review

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bless the McGeachy, 27 July 2013
This review is from: Bless The Weather (Audio CD)
Iain David McGeachy, aka John Martyn, has left us a far bigger and more mixed legacy than his one time pal Nick Drake. 1971s Bless The Weather was his third solo album (after a couple with his then wife Beverly and a spell living in LA), and is described by allmusic.com as "a transitional effort". Nick Drake only got as far as three, ending his run with the truly sublime Pink Moon. For me, whilst I know what allmusic.com are getting at, this is his first properly authoritative masterwork, where he's found his own voice, both literally and more generally.

Bless The Weather is almost like a microcosm of Martyn's larger career, inasmuch as it's diverse and perhaps even somewhat varied in quality. But the best music herein is so good it's right off the scale. Tens stars wouldn't do it justice. Go Easy, using one of his most sonorous open-C tunings, is is one of my all time Martyn faves, and indeed, an all time favourite, period. Beck, a more contemporary eclectic experimentalist, has, to his great credit, covered this, showing excellent taste methinks! As well as Go Easy there are also a number of other gems, like the title track itself, May You Never (Martyn's best royalty generator, thanks to Clapton's version of it on Slowhand), and an exquisitely charming alt. tuning version of Singin' In The Rain.

There's such a wealth of musical treasure here I almost forgot to mention the soothing, calming beauty of Just Now (or Back Down The River, come to think of it). Considering what a troubled soul Martyn was - as is mentioned in the liner notes, he strove to live the intense life of the archetypical jazz artist (and combined an unhealthy lifestyle fuelled by drugs and booze with a healthy disrespect for musical categories) - he sure knew how to make mellow soul balm music. When it comes to the bluesier side of Martyn's output, or the textural guitar improv, there are tracks like Sugar Lump and Glistening Glyndebourne. These aren't my favourites tracks on this superb album, but they're still extremely good (also I feel he's done this sort of thing better elsewhere).

A very diverse and varied set, but considering how mindblowing the best stuff on this disc is, undoubtedly a five star affair.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No

[Add comment]
Post a comment
To insert a product link use the format: [[ASIN:ASIN product-title]] (What's this?)
Amazon will display this name with all your submissions, including reviews and discussion posts. (Learn more)
Name:
Badge:
This badge will be assigned to you and will appear along with your name.
There was an error. Please try again.
Please see the full guidelines here.

Official Comment

As a representative of this product you can post one Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
The following name and badge will be shown with this comment:
 (edit name)
After clicking on the Post button you will be asked to create your public name, which will be shown with all your contributions.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.  Learn more
Otherwise, you can still post a regular comment on this review.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
 
System timed out

We were unable to verify whether you represent the product. Please try again later, or retry now. Otherwise you can post a regular comment.

Since you previously posted an Official Comment, this comment will appear in the comment section below. You also have the option to edit your Official Comment.   Learn more
The maximum number of Official Comments have been posted. This comment will appear in the comment section below.   Learn more
Prompts for sign-in
  [Cancel]

Comments

Track comments by e-mail
Tracked by 1 customer

Sort: Oldest first | Newest first
Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 16 Mar 2016, 16:42:51 GMT
J. Higham says:
Nice review, thanks.

Interesting that you mention "Glistening Glyndebourne" as not a favourite. I think some of the music is difficult to capture if you didn't see these live at the time he was playing this music. I had the chance in 1978 to catch him solo at the North London Polytechnic (Martin Carthy was a guest) when he played much of the material here. Listening to "Glistening Glyndebourne" on this record sounds a little out of place, but when he played his echo-plex material live - "Devil Get My Woman" was another - it was really special, particularly for the period.

In reply to an earlier post on 26 Dec 2016, 03:34:51 GMT
Thanks for the feedback, JH. I'm sure you're right. Alas, I was just 6 in '78! I only saw Martyn performing live once, when he was touring the Solid Air album, only very shortly before he passed away. But I can tell from the DVD 'The Man Upstairs' that in his prime he was a sonic master magician, and, true to his love of the jazz approach, very much improvising in the moment. Thanks to your comment I'll be going back and listening to GG etc. again.

In reply to an earlier post on 26 Dec 2016, 09:37:51 GMT
J. Higham says:
Just a quick update (to make you smile) concerning the performance I was talking about. I remember that he had 4 different PA speakers set round the hall and the sound technician made his guitar whirl around the 4 speakers, very far out!

Glad you're enjoying JM, certainly a wonderful musician. By the way, if you like jazz you might enjoy the Neil Ardley album that John played on Harmony Of The Spheres. He doesn't sing or anything, but his playing on electric guitar is very much an important part of the music. If you're curious - before buying - you can find it on youtube.
‹ Previous 1 Next ›

Review Details

Item

Reviewer

Sebastian Palmer
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   

Location: Cambridge, England

Top Reviewer Ranking: 668