British blues-rock legends Blodwyn Pig turn out an amazing anthology chronicling one of the most influential bands to come out of the U.K. post British invasion.
Brent Black / www.bop-n-jazz.com
As a critic you have to take what you like and what you know and move past that. Blodwyn Pig is a band that I have read about but never heard until this package hit my mailbox recently. So who are they? True rock historians are already hip to the Pig but for those playing along at home here is a brief rundown of the rock and roll bloodlines that make up this incredible band.
Original Jethro Tull guitarist Mick Abrams is joined by Jack Lancaster on saxes, flutes, violin, keys and wind controllers. Andy Pyle holds down the bass chair with drummer Ron Berg rounding out the rhythm section. A little later Jethro Tull's Clive Bunker would join the band on drums. The sound? Comedian Martin Mull once said writing about music is like dancing with architecture. Blodwyn Pig bends genre not to mention hybrid sounds more closely associated with a Jethro Tull by incorporating blues based rock, elements of funk, and mad improvisational skills for a sound that bands such as Aerosmith credit for their very existence in the industry today. Along with the edgy blues based Aerosmith comparison perhaps a Tower of Power meets P-Funk hybrid might be the closest American bands that one could draw a legitimate comparison to but that would be inherently unfair as it is the influence on rock music both yesterday and today that establishes this eclectic ensemble as true trend setters whose music sounds incredibly fresh and viable even today.
Blodwyn Pig played with bands such as Led Zeppelin, The Who, and Janis Joplin. The Pig had two massively successful American tours and conquered legendary festivals such as the Isle of Wight. Aside from high praise coming from the Aerosmith camp, Joey Ramone's cover of the Pig classic "See My Way" simply seals the deal for this band as a legitimate and powerful music still felt in American rock today.
I came into this release stone cold. I walked away a huge fan!
Personnel: Mick Abrams: Vocals, Guitar, Piano; Jack Lancaster: Saxophones, Flutes, Violin, Piano, Yamaha WX7; Andy Pyle: Bass; Ron Burg: Drums;
Guests: Clive Bunker & Graham Walker: Drums; John Gordon: Bass