Exposé Online banner

Anthony Phillips — Private Parts and Pieces
(Blueprint BP202, 1978/1996, CD)

Anthony Phillips — Private Parts and Pieces II: Back to the Pavilion
(Blueprint BP203, 1980/1996, CD)

by Mike Ezzo, Published 1997-02-01

Private Parts and Pieces Cover artPrivate Parts and Pieces II: Back to the Pavilion  Cover art

Released in 1978 and 1980 respectively (though recorded earlier), when acoustic music was anything but in vogue, the first two Private Parts & Pieces collections set the tone for much of Anthony's career. It was here where he began developing the pastoral delicacy he played so important a role in creating with the Trespass album, pushing it further and further away from the rock idiom. Both of these arrived on the scene following a period of tremendous pressure to write singles, which is apparent by the two albums that immediately precede them. But neither Wise after the Event nor Sides was the commercial success the record company hoped for. Thankfully they got their noses out of his way and let him get on with what he does best.

These two albums were recorded at various times during the mid-70s, along with The Geese and the Ghost and others. Both come resplendent with Peter Cross' (as always) beautiful artwork. The whimsical humor supports Ant's music and titles in a way that is distinctly English. PP&P I is a collection of mostly solos and duets from 1972 to '76. Here, classically-inspired and introspective impressionist curios invoke scenes of nature and solitude. "The Reaper" is particularly impressive. There is also a bonus track — "Stranger," a duet with Mike Rutherford from the Genesis days. Volume II stretches out into a new dimension. Guests, including Mel Collins and Mike Rutherford, plus a drummer, make this a band effort. In contrast, it also sports some synthesizer solos and theatrical soundtrack music written for a production of Macbeth. Some of the material was originally composed to serve as links to the songs on Wise after the Event, at a time when that album was planned as a double. The bulk of the contents dates from 1977, and you can vividly see his composing ability taking a leap forward on this project. If you liked The Geese and the Ghost, this should come recommended, despite the greater diversity of material. "Lucy: An Illusion" is the bonus track. Both albums are prime examples of the romantic lyricism that makes Phillips' music so appealing and refreshing. Thankfully, Voiceprint have been reissuing all the Anthony Phillips back catalog in the last year. If you haven't heard his work, this is a great place to begin. I'd suggest starting with the second.


Filed under: Reissues, Issue 11, 1996 releases, 1978 recordings, 1980 recordings

Related artist(s): Anthony Phillips, Mel Collins, Mike Rutherford

Latest news

2021-04-01
New Aristocrats Live Album on the Way – No foolin'! These supreme musicians toured Europe early in 2020, just before touring ceased to be a thing musicians could do, and there were some hot performances captured. On May 7, some of these will be releases as Freeze! Live in Europe 2020. » Read more

2021-03-25
Return of Jerry Lucky's Progressive Rock Files – After much consideration and surprisingly, positive feedback, Jerry Lucky is announcing the launch of the progressive Rock Files podcast, featuring the latest progressive rock music from around the world. » Read more

2021-03-14
Jewlia Eisenberg RIP – The sad news has come out that Jewlia Eisenberg has died. As a founding member of Charming Hostess, Eisenberg changed the face of music, bringing together Balkan klezmer, American folk, and experimental rock in a distinctive blend that garnered much praise. » Read more

2021-03-11
RIP Roger Trigaux – The sad news has come to our attention that Roger Trigaux, the guiding force of Present and former member of Univers Zero, passed away on the evening of March 10, 2021 after a long ilness. » Read more

2021-02-14
SoundQuest Fest 2021 – SoundQuest Fest, first experienced as a live festival in Tucson Arizona in 2010 was created by ambient music pioneer Steve Roach. This 2021 event will unite a worldwide gathering of artists and audience members together for a 3-day online event unique in the realm of ambient music. From March 26-28th a continuous flow of streamed performances, audio-video wonder worlds and deep immersion zones will burn bright on Roach’s YouTube channel. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Magma - "Les Voix" - Concert 1992 Douarnenez – Magma's Christian Vander has decided to follow in the footsteps of Frank Zappa, Andy Latimer, and others in an effort to fight the bootleggers, and has started his own record label AKT to release...  (1993) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues