Exposé Online banner

Jack Lancaster & Robin Lumley — Marscape
(Ozone OZ005-2, 1976/1993, CD)

by Mike Ohman, Published 1994-10-01

Marscape Cover art

Lancaster is the former sax player in Blodwyn Pig, but this album is better-known for its side-players: Robin Lumley, John Goodsall, Percy Jones, Phil Collins, Morris Pert... in short, Brand X! Fans of Brand X actively search out this album expecting a pre-Brand X Brand X album. Well, yes and no. One can certainly hear the Brand X style in embryonic form on some songs, but we must remember, this is really Lancaster's show. Lancaster primarily plays sax, but he also plays a lot of Lyricon, an early wind synthesizer. Sometimes, it's hard to tell which synth lines were played by Lumley or Lancaster, although others have a definite "reedy" quality to their sound (i.e., you can tell by the phrasing that the notes came out of a wind instrument and not a keyboard). Other guest appearances include Penguin Cafe Orchestra mainstay Simon Jeffes on koto, while vocalist Bernie Frost graces some songs with his eerie falsetto, though none of the songs has any lyrics. The songs fall into two distinct categories: 1) Soft and atmospheric with gentle melodies expressed on sax/Lyricon/flute backed by Lumley's keyboards (usually piano) and 2) Jazz-fusion somewhat in the Mahavishnu mold with prominent sax and energetic rock backing. The latter passages are those which will be of greatest interest to Brand X fans, Percy Jones' distinctive bass playing being most prominent. One can't help but wonder if the program music on this album was perhaps originally intended to be a soundtrack of some sort. Worth getting if you know what to expect.


Filed under: Reissues, Issue 5, 1993 releases, 1976 recordings

Related artist(s): Phil Collins, Percy Jones, Robin Lumley, Jack Lancaster

Latest news

2017-10-18
Phil Miller RIP – Sad word reaches us today of the passing of another of the great musicians of the Canterbury Scene — guitarist Phil Miller. His distinctive sound added greatly to Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North, and National Health, and he also contributed to albums by Caravan, Dave Stewart $amp; Barbara Gaskin, and many others. He was 68. » Read more

2017-10-13
Moonjune to Distribute Tony Levin's Back Catalog – It has been announced that Moonjune will now handle distribution for Tony Levin's catalog of releases. These great albums will now be a bit easier to get hold of, so check out the site and see what you're missing. The veteran of King Crimson and Stick Men worked with a host of great players on these albums, and we've reviewed most of them over the course of the years. » Read more

2017-09-26
Bandcamp Shines Light on Niches We Like – Bandcamp has developed into one of the best places to discover new music, and even a lot of old music is showing up there. In addition, their staff has been producing periodic articles spotlighting some interesting stylistic areas. On 20 September, they published one called "The New Face of Prog Rock" which bears checking out. » Read more

2017-09-06
Holger Czukay RIP – Holger Czukay, a musical experimentalist without boundaries who has been involved with expanding the sound palette of rock music since the late 60s, has died at the age of 79. After studying with Karlheinz Stockhausen in the early 60s, he became fascinated with the possibilities of rock music, and was a co-founder of the pioneering group Can. He leaves behind an impressive body of work both as musician and producer. » Read more

2017-08-22
John Abercrombie RIP – Another of the greats of jazz guitar has left us. John Abercrombie plied his way through a beautiful series of albums on the ECM label as well as bringing his talent to bear on albums by many of jazz's greatest artists. From his early work in the group Dreams to Gateway and outstanding work with Billy Cobham, Jack DeJohnette, Kenny Wheeler, and many more to his own trios and quartets, he brought a unique instrumental voice to the world. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Lesli Dalaba / Fred Frith / Eric Glick Rieman / Carla Kihlstedt - Dalaba Frith Glick Rieman Kihlsted – Another super group of improvisers meet at the crossroads with this collection of seven dialogs. Fred Frith is well known to our readers as a proprietor of real time inspirational chaos while Lesli...  (2004) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues