Q - 9/99, p.1073 stars (out of 5)
- "...it's a sleek blues groove with a smoky funk backbeat which steps back for still-elegant and fluid guitar solos. Strong on the late-night atmospherics, these songs are steeped in weariness and pain but emerge with life-affirming zest..."
Producers: Peter Green Splinter Group, Pete Brown.
Personnel: Peter Green (guitar, slide guitar, harp); Nigel Watson (vocals, guitar, mandolin); Malcolm Allison, Kate Shortt, Naomi Fairhurst (strings); Derek Nash (tenor saxophone, baritone saxophone); Joe Green's Novelty Orchestra, Joe Green (tenor saxophone); Roger Cotton (grand piano, keyboards); Peter Stroud (fretless bass); Larry Tolfree (drums, congas, percussion); Jennie Evans, Deborah Miller (background vocals).
Audio Mixer: Matthew Ollivier.
Liner Note Authors: Martin Celmins; Malcolm Allison; Jet Martin Celmins.
Recording information: Jacobs Studios, Farnham, England.
Authors: Peter Brown; Nigel Watson; Roger Cotton; Larry Tolfree; Peter Stroud.
In the late 1960s, Peter Green was one of a handful of British lead guitar heroes who were turning the music industry upside down. As a member of the original version of Fleetwood Mac, Green's tortured lead work was on a par with Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, and Jimmy Page and many championed him as the top of the heap. Unfortunately, Green's promise came crashing down quickly, as drugs and his involvement with the occult drove him from the band and public life. He sold his beloved Les Paul guitar to become a grave digger and severed all ties to show business. Over the years, he has slowly eased himself back into it, making surprise appearances at other stars' concerts and starting to play regularly again. While his legions of true believers wait for him to find his way back to full recovery, we have this album, recorded after a successful American tour with his regular band, the Peter Green Splinter Group. So how does Green fare on this outing? Well, there's no original material here, but his guitar playing definitely shows flashes of the old brilliance in spots. His voice, although a tad rusty in reaching for the high notes, has generally aged well, never gaining full roar and totally laid-back, much like the slower items in the early Fleetwood Mac songbook. Restraint is the operative word here and those expecting guitar fireworks like the old days had better turn to their old Fleetwood Mac records. Green's not a basket case on these sides, but those heralding this disc as a full-fledged return to greatness should listen a bit harder. There's some great music aboard but you'll have to search for it on an album that never really gets out of second gear. Laid-back only begins to describe this one. ~ Cub Koda