Contraction — Live 1974
(ProgQuébec MPM33, 1974/2009, CD)
by Mike McLatchey, Published 2017-06-22
Like many fans of 70s Canadian progressive rock, I really enjoy the first two Contraction albums, but I really had no idea from those how truly professional and what a peak level the band was in when they opened for Gentle Giant and recorded this show. This is really called bringing an A game and it was also fortunate this is a truly excellent recording with a lot of warmth which really helps to underline just how superb the musicianship is here. For a band who had really had a strongly Joni Mitchell-inspired vocalist at the helm doing European inspired symphonic rock, they sure had a lot of groove to their sound and for me it really presents the band at their very best, making it feel somewhat tragic that they didn't last much longer after this. I was encouraged to grab this by Bob Netherton and with pretty much every listen I could see why, I think for most of the band's songs these are the peak versions. I guess it says it all when I have this archival show up there with the best of Coltrane, Miles, the Dead etc. Now I wonder what the Gentle Giant show must have sounded like!
Related artist(s): Contraction
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