John Wetton — Battle Lines
(Eclipse 084-46552, 1994, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 1995-11-01
Comes a time when folks have to decide if they want to keep following an artist after they stop making music in a particular style – in this case progressive rock. Wetton and many like him turned the corner long ago, yet year after year fans keep hoping that they will suddenly start making challenging music like they did twenty years ago. It ain't gonna happen! If one expects the John Wetton of Family, Crimson and UK... well, get over it, he's not there anymore – and one should be able to appreciate that an artist gets tired of a particular style (and starving...) and wants to move on to something more commercially rewarding. That doesn't mean you have to follow them forever, pouting about how they don't make music like they used to. They've gone after a new audience, so it's your move: go look for new music that's more to your liking. On the other hand, if one expects the John Wetton of Asia and after, he's never been better. This is mainstream 80s-style rock at its best, the years have been kind to Wetton's voice, and his songwriting has matured as well; most of the pieces are co-written with keyboardist Bob Marlette, and have a very self-assured style. He's helped out by a number of musicians including old friends Robert Fripp and Simon Phillips, among many others. Most will probably have mixed feelings about this – it's a good solid rock effort, but it's not prog. That's okay. Get used to it.
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
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
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
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