Exposé Online banner

Focus — Focus 8
(Musea FGBG 4472.AR, 2002, CD)

by Jeff Melton, Published 2003-08-01

Focus 8 Cover art

Leave it to Thijs Van Leer to recognize the timely need for Focus to return to active duty. Within the past three years he encountered a Focus tribute act in his Dutch homeland and was so impressed he decided to append himself onto their stage show. That in itself is a testament to their credibility. While sadly Jan Akkerman is not part of this line-up, clearly guitarist Jan Dumée handles the job quite well (and that’s saying a lot). His melodic leads are appropriately in the mode of his countryman without being derivative. Van Leer’s own chops are still intact as evidenced by his fine flute playing on Dumée’s piece, “Tamara’s Move.” This song and several others retain that key classical element of the original incarnation of the group. “Hurkey Turkey” is another in a series of goofily named tracks that show off the new members of the group; it’s a mid-tempo rocker with Van Leer’s scat vocal on display. In contrast “De Ti O De Mi” relies on a slow heavy groove and Dumée’s classy but emotive leads. “Neurotika” is the closest the new quartet comes to the frenzied attack that made the group internationally famous in 1972. Closing out the eleven pieces is “Flower Shower,” a quirky track as amusing for its sound effects as for Van Leer’s melodramatic voice-overs. Overall the album signals a return to form for a long lost musical personality that will quell concerns by older fans and find new ones as well.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 27, 2002 releases

Related artist(s): Focus, Thijs van Leer

Latest news

2019-08-20
Alex's Hand Seeks Spa Treatment – American / European band Alex's Hand has a new album in the works called Hungarian Spa, which looks to be their biggest and best yet, featuring a large roster of guest musicians. They're seeking funding to take the project on the road, and are looking for help from the crowd of wisdom. » Read more

2019-06-05
Legendary Co-Founder of The 13th Floor Elevators Passes Away at Age 71 – Sadly, Roky Erickson passed away on May 31, 2019. Known as the father of psychedelic music and co-founder of the ground breaking 13th Floor Elevators, Roky had a profound influence on music from the 60s to today. Plagued by his own personal demons, Roky had a difficult life and is now free of these burdens. » Read more

2019-04-24
Help MoonJune Bring Great Music to Life – Like many music lovers around the world, we’ve been thrilled and amazed to hear the recordings that have been released by MoonJune from sessions at La Casa Murada in Spain. Such label stalwarts as Mark Wingfield, Markus Reuter, Asaf Sirkis, Tony Levin, Dusan Jevtovic, Vasil Hadzimanov, and many more have gathered in various combinations at the studio to produce some of the most creative music in recent years. Now, label head Leonardo Pavkovic is offering a compilation, La Casa Murada - MoonJune Sessions, Volume One, as a fundraiser for upcoming sessions. » Read more

2019-04-10
The Pineapple Thief to Tour North America – November and December of 2019 will see The Pineapple Thief bringing their music to Canada, Mexico, and the US, and famed drummer Gavin Harrison will be on board. The band has been touring extensively in Europe, but North America will be new territory for them. » Read more

2019-03-25
Scott Walker RIP – Noel Scott Engel, better known as Scott Walker, was one of the most intriguing and enigmatic musical figures in the second half of the 20th Century. His strange career started with The Walker Brothers, an American pop group that featured no one named Walker and no brothers. After moving to England in 1965, they had a series of hit singles. Scott's solo work started with Scott in 1967. Starting in the 80s, his work took an increasingly avant-garde turn. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Rush - Snakes and Arrows – When a short audio sample of "Far Cry" was posted on Rush's web site it led to excited and hopeful premonitions of a return to the kind of prog rock the Canadian trio had pioneered on...  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues