Free – Fire & Water (Epic 2017 #090)

The Epic 2017 Project #090: 170331

Free – Fire & Water (1970)

Free’s third studio album was their breakthrough hit, reaching No. 2 in the UK charts and No.17 in the US, making it the most successful Free album. The album contained the hit single “All Right Now” which they later played to a crowd of over 600,000 people at the 1970 Isle of Wight Festival. To date, it is the only Free album to have seen a CD reissue in America

Focus – Focus II (Moving Waves) (Epic 2017 #089)

The Epic 2017 Project #089: 170330

Focus – Focus II (Moving Waves) (1971)

Focus II (better known as its international title Moving Waves) is the second studio album from the Dutch rock band Focus, released in October 1971 on Imperial Records. Following the departure of Martin Dresden and Hans Cleuver in 1970, the band recruited Cyril Havermans on bass and Pierre van der Linden on drums and proceeded to work on new material. The album includes “Hocus Pocus”, the group’s most successful single, and “Eruption”, a 22-minute track based on the opera Euridice by Jacopo Peri.

Focus II was released to a mostly positive response. It remains one of the band’s most commercially successful albums, reaching No. 2 on the UK Albums Chart and No. 8 on the US Billboard 200. “Hocus Pocus” was released as a single in 1971, but did not chart until 1973 when it reached No. 9 in the US and No. 20 in the UK. The album is certified Gold by the Recording Industry Association of America for sales in excess of 500,000 copies.

Focus II was also the first album I purchased on cassette tape. I’ve still got it and it still plays!

Fluke – Risotto (Epic 2017 #088)

The Epic 2017 Project #088: 170329

Fluke – Risotto (1997)

Risotto was Fluke’s fourth album, released on 26 May 1997 on Circa Records and 30 September on Astralwerks.

Many of the tracks that brought Fluke to a larger audience are featured on this album, including “Atom Bomb”, used on the Wipeout 2097 (game) soundtrack, and “Absurd,” used in many films/trailers, including a 1998 Volkswagen Beetle commercial, Sin City in 2005, and the episode “Chaos” from the show “Spaced”.

The album artwork was designed by The Designers Republic and features a chrome-plated KitchenAid blende

Fleetwood Mac – Tusk (Epic 2017 #087)

The Epic 2017 Project #087: 170328

Fleetwood Mac – Tusk (1979)

My second outing to Fleetwood Mac land in this series takes us on a decade to 1979. It’s now post blues years and post the joining of Lindsey Buckingham, Christine McVie and Stevie Nicks. It is of course to the subliminal world of the mighty Tusk.

It was the band’s 12th album. Released in 1979, it revealed experimental overtones and another departure from typicality, primarily due to Lindsey Buckingham’s sparser songwriting arrangements and the influence of punk rock and new wave on his production techniques. Widely noted in the 1979 press for costing over $1 million to record, it was the most expensive rock album made up to that point. Compared to 1977’s Rumours which sold 10 million copies by March 1978, Tusk sold four million copies. Because of this, the album was regarded as a commercial failure by the label. Which is a shame because I’d rate it (along with many other die-hard followers) on a pretty well equal footing.

The band embarked on a 9-month tour to promote Tusk. They travelled extensively across the world, including the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, Japan, France, Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands, and UK. In Germany they shared the bill with Bob Marley. It was on this world tour that the band recorded music for the Fleetwood Mac Live album, which was released in 1980.

Fleetwood Mac – Then Play On (Epic 2017 #086)

The Epic 2017 Project #086: 170327

Fleetwood Mac – Then Play On (1969)

There are two Fleetwood Mac outings in this series. Mainly because they have such a long history, and mainly because there are essentially two Fleetwood Macs; the pre-girls blues years and the post-girls blues-into-something-else years. Both of which I love.

For starters here’s ‘Then Play On’, the band’s third studio album featuring Peter Green on vocals, guitar, harmonica, six string bass and percussion, Danny Kirwan on vocals and guitar, John McVie on bass and Mick Fleetwood on drums and percussion.

First released in the UK in 1969, the US pressing (also released in 1969) included an eight-minute version of ‘Oh Well’ featuring Jeremy Spencer on piano.

Then Plan On was the last Fleetwood Mac album to feature Peter Green.

First Aid Kit – Drunken Trees (Epic 2017 #085)

The Epic 2017 Project #085: 170326

First Aid Kit – Drunken Trees (2008)

Drunken Trees was the debut release by Swedish folk duo First Aid Kit. It was released on 9 April 2008 in Sweden via Rabid Records, followed by a UK release via Wichita Records on 23 February 2009. The UK release features the band’s cover of Fleet Foxes’ “Tiger Mountain Peasant Song” as a bonus track, in addition to videos of “Our Own Pretty Ways”, “Jagadamba, You Might” and “You’re Not Coming Home Tonight”

Bryan Ferry – These Foolish Things (Epic 2017 #084)

The Epic 2017 Project #084: 170325

Bryan Ferry – These Foolish Things (1973)

These Foolish Things is the debut solo studio album by Bryan Ferry, who at the time was still Roxy Music’s lead vocalist. Released in October 1973 on Island Records in the UK, and Atlantic Records in the United States, it was a commercial and critical success, peaking at number 5 on the albums chart in the United Kingdom.

The album consists entirely of cover versions, most of the tracks being personal favorites of Ferry’s and spanning several decades from 1930s standards such as the title track through to the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s with Elvis Presley,Bob Dylan and the Rolling Stones.

A Hard Rain’s a-Gonna Fall” (for example) was written by Bob Dylan in the summer of 1962 and was first recorded for his second album The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan.

Feeder – Comfort in Sound (Epic 2017 #083)

The Epic 2017 Project #083: 170324

Feeder – Comfort in Sound (2002)

Feeder were the first band I took my eldest daughter (Emily) to see. February 2003 – Brighton Dome – for the 5th leg of the ‘Comfort in Sound’ UK tour. It was her 16th birthday treat. For both of us!

Sold out (obviously). Queues around the block. But front row balcony seats. Not too shabby a choice for a first big gig Emily Rose!

Comfort in Sound was Feeder’s fourth studio album, released on 21 October 2002 and the first to be released by the band after the suicide of drummer Jon Lee earlier in the year. The album was recorded at RAK Studios in London during most of 2002, and was produced by Gil Norton.

The band returned to live performance after Lee’s suicide, playing low-key slots at various festivals in the United Kingdom, before releasing the single “Come Back Around” and then the album. Three further singles—”Just the Way I’m Feeling”, “Forget About Tomorrow” and “Find the Colour”—followed the album’s release as did the ‘Comfort in Sound’ UK tour which started in February 2003.

Fatboy Slim – Palookaville (Epic 2017 #081)

The Epic 2017 Project #081: 170322

Fatboy Slim – Palookaville (2004)

Good to have some local flavour in this series. So here’s one from Fatboy Slim who technically lives in Shoreham. I say technically because his house is in ‘millionaires row’ on the beach at the eastern end of Shoreham Harbour – some 5-6 miles from Shoreham town itself. However, he’s still a local boy.

Palookaville was his fourth studio album released on 4 October 2004, approximately four years after the previous one. Football club Brighton and Hove Albion F.C. temporarily named their Withdean Stadium after it following their sponsorship deal with Skint Records. The album was nominated for the 2006 Grammy Award for Best Electronic/Dance Album.