Market Square [Release date 30.08.19] www.marketsquaremusic.com
Arriving to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the Apollo moon landing, Michael J Bolton has fashioned his own tribute. As he outlines in the liner notes “I wanted to portray the drama and gravitas of Apollo through composition and record production. Interpreted, elevated, and enhanced by creative musicians.”
To this end he enlisted the services of producer/arranger David Hentschel who has worked with Genesis, Elton John, Mike Oldfield and perhaps more relevantly jazz fusioners Yellowjackets.
What emerges, after several years of “stop-start” in the recording process, is a fusion soundscape, epitomised by the swinging ‘Trans Lunar Injection’ which pulses with all the funk of classic jazz fusion punctuated by Hentschel’s keyboards and a particularly fine sax solo from Marc Russo (ex-Yellowjackets). The interjection of Apollo audio is the only reference to the theme.
‘Arrow Of Time’ is dedicated to NASA fan, the late Paul Buckmaster, whom Bolton approached originally to help with the orchestrations. It has a lovely late night jazzy groove in a Ramsey Lewis-accessible sort of way with Neil Yates’ fluegel horn and Matthew Johns’ piano a highlight. Ditto the title track.
‘The Eagle’ actually reminds me of the ‘Sun Goddess’ vibe by the aforementioned Lewis but it could equally be cut by seventies Earth, Wind & Fire or even George Duke.
Unlike many of this type of concept album, Earthrise can be enjoyed in its own right and apart from that one track is bereft of possibly intrusive and distracting audio artefacts.
Described in some despatches as “progressive rock”, this is misleading unless you read the oracle that is “Prog” magazine which – irritatingly – seems to embrace many artists that don’t fall into a strictly prog rock pigeon-hole.
Multi-instrumentalist, Plymouth-born, Bolton mainly contributes bass, and – before you ask - no, he is not the eighties crooner! ****
Review by David Randall
For similar spaced out excursions check out also Market Square’s Voyager-themed album:
The latest Facebook Live session from Canadian singer-songwriter Josh Taerk was streamed on Sunday 22 November.
More about Josh: http://getreadytorock.me.uk/blog/?s=%22Josh+Taerk%22
David Randall presents a weekly show on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio, Sundays at 22:00 BST (GMT+1, repeated on Mondays and Fridays), when he invites listeners to ‘Assume The Position’. This show was first broadcast on 15 November 2020.
UK Blues Broadcaster of the Year (2020) Pete Feenstra presents his weekly Rock & Blues Show on Tuesday at 19:00 ( BST, GMT+1) as part of a five hour blues rock marathon “Tuesday is Bluesday at GRTR!”. The show is repeated on Wednesdays at 22:00, Fridays at 20:00). This show was first broadcast 17 November 2020
Listen in to Get Ready to ROCK! Radio…
Click the appropriate icons at the top of the page.
Featured Albums w/c 23 November (Mon-Fri)
09:00-12:00 JEFF SCOTT SOTO Wide Awake (In My Dreamland) (Frontiers)
12:00-13:00 LAZARUS DREAM Alive (Pride & Joy Music)
14:00-16:00 RONAN FURLONG The King Of Leaves (Thoroughbred Music)
Power Plays w/c 23 November (Mon-Fri)
L.A. GUNS All That You Are (Golden Robot Records)
THE DUST CODA Limbo Man (Earache)
EBBA BERGKVIST & THE FLAT TIRE BAND 68 Twin (indie)
IRON SAVIOR Souleater (AFM Records)
IVY GOLD This Is My Time (indie)
Tweets by Get Ready to ROCK!