Isley Brothers – Forever Gold (Epic 2017 #120)

The Epic 2017 Project #120: 170430

The Isley Brothers – Forever Gold (1977)

The Isley Brothers from Cincinnati, Ohio originally comprised four brother – O’Kelly Jr., Rudolph, Ronald and Vernon, performing gospel music until Vernon’s death a few years after formation in 1954.

After moving to the New York City area in the late 1950s, the group had modest chart successes during their early years, first coming to prominence in 1959 with their fourth single, “Shout”, written by the three surviving brothers. Initially a modest charted single, the song eventually sold over a million copies. Afterwards the group recorded for a variety of labels, including the top 20 single, “Twist and Shout” and the Motown single, “This Old Heart of Mine (Is Weak for You)” before recording and issuing the Grammy Award-winning hit, “It’s Your Thing” on their own label, T-Neck Records.

Influenced by gospel and doo-wop music, the group began experimenting with different musical styles incorporating elements of rock and funk music as well as pop balladry. The inclusion of younger brothers Ernie Isley (lead guitar, drums) and Marvin Isley (bass guitar), and Rudolph’s brother-in-law Chris Jasper (keyboards, synthesizers) in 1973 turned the original vocal trio into a self-contained musical band. For the next full decade, they recorded top-selling albums including The Heat Is On and Between the Sheets.

Forever Gold is a greatest hits album capturing that success and released in 1977.

INXS – Kick (Epic 2017 #119)

The Epic 2017 Project #119: 140429

INXS – Kick (1987)

Kick is the sixth studio album by the Australian rock band INXS, released in 1987 by WEA in Australia, Atlantic Records in the United States and Phonogram Records in the United Kingdom on Audio CD, Compact Cassette and Gramophone record. As the band’s most successful studio album, it is certified six times platinum by the RIAA, and spawned four US top 10 singles, “New Sensation”, “Never Tear Us Apart”, “Devil Inside” and “Need You Tonight”, the last of which reached the top of the Billboard singles charts. At the 1988 MTV Video Music Awards, the band took home five Moonmen for the “Need You Tonight”/”Mediate” video.

The album was produced by Chris Thomas and recorded by David Nicholas in Sydney, Australia, and in Paris, France. The album was mixed by Bob Clearmountain at Air Studios in London.

Incubus – Morning View (Epic 2017 #117)

The Epic 2017 Project #117: 170427

Incubus – Morning View (2001)

Incubus released this, their fourth studio album, on October 23, 2001 through Epic Records. A companion DVD, The Morning View Sessions, was released on May 29, 2002. Morning View was the last Incubus album to feature bassist Alex Katunich.

With the album producing the popular singles “Wish You Were Here” and “Nice to Know You,” Morning View generally achieved critical praise and went double-platinum, making it the band’s highest selling album.

I am Kloot – Gods and Monsters (Epic 2017 #115)

The Epic 2017 Project #115: 140425

I am Kloot – Gods and Monsters (2005)

This was the third album from I Am Kloot, released on April 11 2005. It reached No. 74 in the UK.

The semi-autobiographical lead single from this album “Over My Shoulder”, about relationships ending, was featured occasionally on MTV. Lead singer Bramwell refers to the “Night and Day” club in Manchester where he used to work and where I Am Kloot got their first break.

The track “Avenue of Hope” featured in the closing credits of the Danny Boyle film Sunshine in 2007. The cover art is by poster artist Jay Ryan.

Dave Hole – the live one (Epic 2017 #114)

The Epic 2017 Project #114: 170424

Dave Hole – the live one (2003)

In my opinion – one of the best live albums I own. And certainly one of Mr Hole’s best. In ‘The live one’ (released on Black Cat Records in 2003), he positively shines, his slide prowess coming into its own in almost every track.

Here’s one of them ‘Take me to Chicago’. A brilliant bit of blues with an opening lyric that grabs me by the short and curlies every time…

Take me to Chicago, back in 1959…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FWQR9umRWZs

Steve Hillage – L ( Epic 2017 #113)

The Epic 2017 Project #113: 170423

Steve Hillage – L (1976)

L was Steve Hillage’s second studio  album, released in June 1976.

It was recorded primarily in New York, at the Secret Sound, Woodstock, N.Y., and was produced and engineered by Todd Rundgren, using musicians from Todd Rundgren’s band Utopia and others.

According to liner notes supplied with the US pressing, Rundgren had only just become aware of Hillage, and following a letter from Hillage to Rundgren, and a reply from Rundgren, Hillage travelled to New York to meet, and the agreement to work together flowed from that.

Unusually for Hillage, half the songs on this album are covers. “Hurdy Gurdy Man” was written by Donovan, “Om Nama Shivaya” is based on a traditional Hindu mantra, and “It’s All Too Much” was written by George Harrison, and originally appeared on the 1969 Beatles album, Yellow Submarine

Herbie Hancock – Monster (Epic 2017 #111)

The Epic 2017 Project #111: 170421

Herbie Hancock – Monster (1980)

Herbert Jeffrey “Herbie” Hancock (born April 12, 1940) started his career with Donald Byrd.  Then he  joined the Miles Davis Quintet where he helped to redefine the role of a jazz rhythm section and was one of the primary architects of the post-bop sound. He was one of the first jazz musicians to embrace synthesizers and funk music. Hancock’s music is often melodic and accessible; he has had many songs “cross over” and achieved success among pop audiences.

His best-known compositions include “Cantaloupe Island”, “Watermelon Man” (later performed by dozens of musicians, including bandleader Mongo Santamaría), “Maiden Voyage”, “Chameleon”, and the singles “I Thought It Was You” and “Rockit”

Monster was his twenty-ninth album.  Released as a follow-up to the “Feets” album, it avoided jazz and funk in favor of disco.