Exposé Online banner

Jan Hammer — The First Seven Days
(Columbia CK 85401, 1975/2002, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2005-03-01

The First Seven Days Cover artAh, for those simpler days, before New Age fossilized into colorless bits of seemingly nutritious but flavor-free soy-based meat substitutes, before anyone realized that there was no place for splatty-funk Moog bass in sequenced pieces, before the Electronic Congress passed the Third Amendment to bar jazzy electric piano from electronic music, and before anyone knew that keyboard players shouldn’t also be drummers. But 1975 was a different time, and this classic recording stands the test of time admirably. It’s an invigorating cross between Hammer’s Mahavishnu fusion work and moody electronic atmospheres, with Mellotron strings backing snaky monophonic synthesizer lines and Hammer’s own live drumming punching up the rhythmic impact. The lead lines are trademark Hammer, full of bent notes and unexpected intervals. There are meditative moments for acoustic piano (like the opening of the second day); there are rapid-fire sequenced arpeggios drifting around in the aural field, varying their accents too quickly to fall into ruts; there are warped Oberheim gong-sounds; and there are guests on violin (Steve Kindler) and percussion (David Earl Johnson). Other than the fact that there are seven tracks, the “concept” is a mere trapping, with no impact on the music itself. This is much more than a one-man electronic album – it’s a high mark of 70s fusion, and its reissue is very welcome.

Filed under: Reissues, Issue 31, 2002 releases, 1975 recordings

Related artist(s): Jan Hammer

Latest news

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

2019-03-20
Freedom to Spend Unearths June Chikuma's Archives – Jun (June) Chikuma is well known for her video game and anime soundtracks, but she also released an album of experimental electronic music back in 1986 called Divertimento where she indulged the kind of spontaneity that wouldn't work in a soundtrack. RVNG Int'l label Freedom to Spend is bringing this overlooked item to broader attention with a deluxe reissue. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Red Jasper - A Midsummer Night's Dream – From the acoustic guitars and tin-whistle that open the first track, I knew this wouldn't be your standard SI neo-prog fare. Vocalist Davey Dodds picks up about a minute in, with a deep and thick...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues