Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Brand X Live at the Roxy LA Gonzo 2014


Perhaps the best unknown jazz fusion ensemble ever...
Brent Black /

A funny thing happened on the way to the rock super group Genesis, Phil Collins had already made a name for himself in a band that was revered by other musicians and a handful of critics that looked a little deeper than the Billboard Hot 100. While Brand X only had a five year run, the impact of the band is still felt today. While there was a reunion in 1992, Live at The Roxy captures Brand X at the height of their creative powers.

This previously unreleased recording is a raw mix to be sure however very few recordings with the "warts and all" approach are able to transfer the energy and enthusiasm as this particular live set. So what happened to Brand X? These British favorites did what some of their contemporaries refuse to do, they stopped when they have nothing more to give from a purely artistic level. The band members quietly drifted apart and a band that started as quiet and unassuming British favorites left in the same fashion as they were created.

Somewhere between classic jazz / rock fusion and art rock there lies Brand X. From a historical perspective, one of those bands that sadly faded into obscurity. From an artistic perspective, a launching pad for Collin's career and to shine a much needed light on bands that transcend genre with a unique harmonic perspective and..."good fun!"

4 Stars

Tracks: Disco Suicide; Dance of the Illegal Aliens; Don't Make Waves; Malaga Virgin; And So to F; Nuclear Burn.

Personnel: Phillip Collins: Drums, Vocals; Robin Lumley: Keyboards; Jon Goodsell: Guitar; Percy Jones: Bass; Peter Robinson: Keyboards.