Saturday, August 11, 2012

Have You Ever Wondered?

I've found myself revisiting a lot of my favorite music in the past few weeks, particularly progressive rock from the 1970s. Last night, I treated myself to Jeff Wayne's 1979 musical version of War of the Worlds, which I still believe is the best adaptation of Wells's novel (perhaps my all-time favorite novel, apart from Dumas's The Three Musketeers). The recording came out at the height of the disco era, and the disco influence shows a bit — and despite an overall positive reception at the time, I recall some serious backlash because of it. Back then, being a progressive-rock purist, I was as anti-disco as they came, but also being a Moody Blues fanatic, Justin Hayward's presence on the album sold me. Upon my first listening, I considered the album a masterpiece, and to this day, I still do.

And on the subject of The Moody Blues, Graeme Edge, their drummer/lyricist, had a short but fairly brilliant run in the late 70s with The Graeme Edge Band, which featured Adrian Gurvitz on guitar/vocals. Their albums, Kick Off Your Muddy Boots and Paradise Ballroom were both jam-packed gems of progressive rock. They never achieved much recognition, but the little body of work they had still stands out as awesome. "Have You Ever Wondered" is one of the many noteworthy cuts from Kick Off Your Muddy Boots. Give it a listen; if you're of that age and/or musical persuasion and haven't checked them out before, you're so in for a treat.

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