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STACKRIDGE Extravaganza Angel Air SJPCD233 (2007)


1975's Extravaganza saw in a new Stackridge line-up post the departure of co-writer James Warren amongst half the original band members.

Incomers, including ex-Audience hornsman Keith Gemmell, drew out a more progressive sound from the eccentric collective, but the quality of writing and performance was mercifully undiminished.

A hugely popular live act, the good-natured vitality and humour of the stage pervade this as much as they did its predecessors.

'The Volunteer', 'Spin Round The Room' and 'Happy in The Lord' bottle the special essence of pop music-hall from a quintessentially-British combo that never let the silliness undermine the melody nor structural integrity of the songs.

The late, libation-friendly Tony Ashton (Ashton, Gardner & Dyke) moonlights from production duties to add barmy spoken-word and manic laughter. King Crimson-hating Gordon Haskell is caught up in proceedings with his contribution, 'No-one's More Important The Earthworm'.

Of its time, of course, but lovingly exhumed and dusted-down with a good read and period pictures in the generous booklet.


Review by Peter Muir

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© 2007 Angel Air Records. All rights reserved.

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***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly

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