The Tangent — A Place in the Queue
(Inside Out Music IOMSECD 237, 2006, 2CD)
by Paul Hightower, Published 2007-03-01
With their third album, The Tangent has consolidated tightly around writer / singer / keyboardist Andy Tillison. Fans of Roine Stolt might be disappointed to hear he’s no longer around, though in all honesty the music hasn’t suffered in the slightest. The most noticeable effect is less guitar in the arrangements, which Tillison has filled in with synths, Hammond, piano, etc. The Flower Kings’ Jonas Reingold is still on bass, making solid contributions throughout, either with his customary Squire-ean punch or via Jaco-like jazzy playing. Theo Travis has returned on saxes and flutes with his best moments on the Canterbury-flavored “Lost in London” and his wah-wah’d sax on the title track that brings Traffic’s Chris Wood to mind. Guy Manning’s role has diminished significantly, though again I can’t say the product has suffered as a result. Tillison has stated that his main inspirations for this album were both to try something on the conceptual scale of Yes’ Topographic Oceans (which he astutely points out “...isn’t still in every High Street record store just to add to the decor”) as well as to recapture the spirit of 70s Canterbury bands. Fortunately he’s chosen not to ape either and instead he’s produced some wickedly good music that rocks and swings with enough melodic potency to avoid wallowing in excess. If Tillison can be accused of occasionally wearing his influences on his sleeve it’s all in service to some fine music that fans of mainstream prog owe it to themselves to hear. Recommended.
Tomasz Stańko RIP – Tomasz Stańko, one of the greats of Eastern European jazz, has died at the age of 76. Stańko's career started in Krzysztof Komeda's quintet, where he contributed trumpet from 1963-1967, when he formed his own group. He worked extensively with Edward Vesala, Don Cherry, Zbigniew Seifert, Chico Freeman, Howard Johnson, Cecil Taylor, and many others. Many of his recordings have been released by ECM, an association that began in the mid-70s. » Read more
Soft Machine Set to Release New Music – It's been 50 years since The Soft Machine changed the face of music with their first album. Their blend of psychedelic rock and jazz was unique, and while the band went through many changes before disbanding in 1981 — by which time there were no original members remaining — they remained an innovative force with a style all their own. » Read more
7d Surfaces Happy Rhodes Back Catalog – We've covered singer Happy Rhodes before, both for her solo work and recently with The Security Project, but her 11 albums have been hard to track down. Until now. 7d features high-quality downloads of all her releases, and several of them are also available on CD. » Read more
Fred Chalenor RIP – We have news of another sad passing in the world of creative music. Bassist Fred Chalenor, whose creativity featured on albums by Tone Dogs, Caveman Shoestore, and many more, died on June 23, 2018 after a long battle with Alzheimer's. Tributes have poured in from the many musicians and fans whose lives he touched. » Read more