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Friday, January 9, 2015
Various Artists 1973 Reading Festival '73
Rate: 320 kbps CBR / 44100
Size: 104,63 MB
Even for the tax scam Tiger Lily label "Reading Festival Featuring Rod Stewart" was a unique release ... it's certainly obscure. I've only seen two copies in 30 years of collecting so good luck locating another copy. To the best of my knowledge it's also the only live set that Tiger Lily released.
As you probably guessed, the album title wasn't particularly accurate. Yeah, the performances were taped at the Reading Festival (officially The 13th National Jazz, Blues & Rock Festival, Reading, England held over three days in June 1973), but in spite of the title, Rod Stewart (and the Faces) were hardly the dominant act on this nine selection compilation. In fact they were only featured on one lackluster track - turns out Stewart and the Faces who were in the midst of going their separate ways also got pretty shitty reviews at the concert itself. So what's actually on the album?
- The late Rory Gallagher started the set off with a blazing 'Hands Off'. Fantastic live version that kicked the crap out of the original studio version (found on 1972's "Blueprint").
- I'm guessing that the Bo Diddley 'Road Runner' cover was the band Strider (whom I know nothing about). Not a half bad heavy metal cover version.
- Greenslade's not exactly a known quantity in the States, but 'Feathered Friends' was a surprisingly enjoyable piece of progressive puff. I'll have to check out some of their material.
- Pulled form their "Piledriver" set, 'Don't Waste My Tim' was a standard Status Quo rocker. Mindless fun ...
- The Faces were probably the band most folks came to see, but based on their pro-forma cover of 'Losing You' you had to wonder what the excitement was about. A lackluster Stewart vocal and seemingly endless Kenny Jones drum solo didn't exactly help.
- Perhaps the biggest surprise to me was Alan Bown's 'Long Legged Linda'. Yeah, he didn't have the most impressive voice you've ever heard, but the song was a great slice of pub rock energy. One of the standout performances ...
- Easily the weirdest artist and song in the lineup was Leslie Duncan's 'Earth Mother' ... Mind you I have nothing against Duncan, but her pop moves sure sounded out of place here. Mind you her performance was actually quite good. Nice guitar work ...
- That left Tim Hardin as the other big surprise. Hardin wasn't in particularly good health at the time (he looked like death warmed over on the back cover photo), but still managed to turn in a pair of stunning performances on 'Hang On To a Dream' and 'Person To Person'. (He sure didn't rock out like this on the studio albums I've heard.)
The album also sported some great sound quality courtesy of Ronnie Lane's Mobile Studio and producers Chris Beckwith and Jimmy Horowitz. IN fact some if the performances were so good you had to wonder whether they were spiffed up with some post-production work (check out the strings on Duncan and Hardin's performances).
Shame the set didn't capture some of the other festival performances since the 1973 line up was pretty eclectic including opening act Embryo, Finland's Tasavallan Presidentii, French jazz-rockers Ange, Magma, Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen, Genesis, Spencer Davis, John Martyn, Status Quo, etc. (Scott Blackerby)
01 - Rory Gallagher - Hands Off 08:38
02 - Strider - Road Runner 04:22
03 - Greenslade - Feathered Friends 04:54
04 - Status Quo - Dont Waste My Time 04:14
05 - The Faces With Rod Stewart - Losing You 06:48
06 - Andy Bown - Long Legged Linda 03:45
07 - Lesley Duncan - Earth Mother 05:39
08 - Tim Hardin - Hang On To A Dream Personto Perso 07:24
more information about the Reading Festival
Various Artists here: