Exposé Online banner

Brian Hopper — If Ever I Am
(Voiceprint VP338CD, 2004, CD)

by Jeff Melton, Published 2006-05-01

If Ever I Am Cover art

Canterbury fans may recall Hugh’s brother who was a member of the Wilde Flowers and played sax on Soft Machine Volume Two. Since that time Hopper was also involved in the bootleg quality Canterburied series on Voiceprint making available rare performances from various acts as well including Beggar’s Farm and Zobe. 2004 found the sax player and composer enlisting old friends for work on new songs and a revisit on old ones. Both Hugh and Robert Wyatt appear in support and lead roles on various pieces. Wyatt delivers two memorable lead vocals on the “The Pieman Cometh” and a reprise of “Hope for Happiness.” The former piece is a slice of synth keyboard and programmed drums that benefits from Wyatt’s choired vocals and trumpet. The latter nine minute revisitation of the Softs’ classic tune from their first album has Wyatt crooning over an Indian raga motif that supposedly was the original plan for the piece. Francis Knight gives the best piano accompaniment on the disc on “Sometimes It Is.” Alternately, “Modality” is perhaps the best conceived piece on the disc as the two Hopper brothers find familiar jazz ground in their bass and sax interplay. Old bandmate Graham Flight provides a techno keyboard loop on “For Freedom,” where Wyatt’s sampled voice works in a successful but somewhat uncharacteristic fashion. In closing, it’s clear that Hopper has maintained close roots to his Canterbury jazz leanings as fans will no doubt agree.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 33, 2004 releases

Related artist(s): Brian Hopper, Hugh Hopper, Robert Wyatt

Latest news

2021-01-18
Asia Minor Third Album on the Way – On January 29, AMS records will be releasing the long-awaited third album by classic Turkish-French band Asia Minor. Released last year in Japan, this will be the widespread debut of Points of Libration. The album features original members Setrak Bakirel (vocals, guitar) and Eril Tekeli (flute, guitar). » Read more

2020-12-09
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

2020-11-20
25 Views of Worthing Finally Gets Released – A while ago, we wrote about the discovery of a "long lost" Canterbury-style gem by a band called 25 Views of Worthing. And now we're pleased to find out that Wind Waker Records has released their music on an LP. » Read more

2020-10-14
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

2020-10-06
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


Previously in Exposé...

Iona - Iona DVD & Live in London DVD – Celtic prog band Iona are back in a big way, not only with their recent studio release, The Circling Hour, but also with two new DVDs. This is a great set both for fans and those new to the band as it...  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues