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TEN YEARS AFTER Think About The Times (The Chrysalis Years 1969-1972) EMI (2010)

Ten Years After

Ah... TYA. Reassuringly of the seventies."Lurrrve Like A Man...." was all over the charts shortly after 'world's fastest guitarist' Alvin Lee got his chops all over the Woodstock movie and supernova'd the blues rockers to stardom.

This box brings us the band's heydays with Chrysalis across three discs with all the singles, kicking off with 1969's Ssssh. It's content-rich, as if the move to Chris Wright's emporium afforded the band the chance to open up a bit, itchy opener "Bad Scene" with period megaphone vocals giving way to a tough standout in "Stoned Woman", trademark guitar and keyboards to the fore.

1970's Cricklewood Green is more commercially mainstream: "Working On The Road has a progressive feel while spacey "50,000 Miles Beneath My Brain" noodles nicely and chart hit single "Love Like A Man" is offset nicely by a ballad in "Circles". 'Watt' exemplifies the band's capacity to 'build' a song in "My Baby Left Me" while playful Morricone-spoof "Band with No Name" reveals a quirky sense of humour.

1971's A Space in Time includes atmospheric acoustic "Here They Come" and another huge hit in "I'd Love To Change The World", while the budget affords tasty orchestration on "Over The Hill", its dramatic effect albeit diluted by a closer of jazzy improv workout in "Uncle Jam".

While Rock N' Roll Music To The World boasts another effective builder in "Standing At The Station", the drive for success Stateside drove away the last vestiges of quirky individualism that had set TYA apart. But this set renders quibbles over the occasional unevenness of their offer void: the prospect of cherry-picking specific tracks for download being economically unviable in the face of such good value.


Review by Peter Muir

GRTR! Recommended

Peter Muir presents "Progressive Rock Fusion" on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio, Sunday 19:00, Monday 19:00

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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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