Bryan Ferry — Olympia
(Virgin CDV 3086, 2010, CD)
by Jeff Melton, Published 2011-06-01
Bryan Ferry has noticeably become very particular when releasing new material under his own name. Reportedly this album was going to be a Roxy Music recording at one point, seriously re-worked and pondered. On board for sentimental journey is a set of familiar suspects including Roxy alumni Phil Manzanera, Andy McKay, and Brian Eno, as well as guitar journeymen Chris Spedding and Neil Hubbard. Plus add in Nile Rogers, Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour, and the Chili Peppers’ Flea, and you get the idea that this is a who’s-who of performers that got down on nearly every track to the groove Ferry insists on. The lead track and video for ‘You Can Dance” are as compelling as any Roxy or Ferry single in the past several years, which is saying a lot. Selecting cover material has always been a delicate task, and the results come in two strong examples: Tim Hardin’s “Song to the Siren” and John Lennon’s “Whatever Gets You through the Night.” The former piece is a refined slice of quavery emotive vocal and lush backing while the latter track is another clever rendition in the Roxy country rave-up style. The Making of Olympia DVD is full of musician kudos from Rogers and guitarist Oliver Thompson about interpreting Ferry’s vision for their playing on individual tracks. Plus the Kate Moss cover is simply to die for! Note: The release also comes in multiple formats including a book and two-CD expanded versions; one with a set of seven remixes which were unavailable at review time.
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more
Simeon Coxe RIP – Simeon Coxe, best known for his experimental electronics in the band Silver Apples, has died at the age of 82. The band's 1968 debut album set the stage for both German electronic music and experimental punk music a decade later. Coxe died on September 8 from pulmonary fibrosis. » Read more