Ian Anderson and company seemed to make a conscious effort to update Jethro Tull's sound on this record. And, to the amazement (and distress) of many, it was voted the Grammy Award for Best Hard Rock/Heavy Metal Performance. Truth is, it isn't a bad album, with an opening track that qualifies as hard rock and pretty much shouts its credentials out in Martin Barre's screaming lead guitar line, present throughout. "Jump Start" and "Raising Steam" also rock hard, and no one can complain of too much on this record being soft, apart from the acoustic "The Waking Edge," along with "Budapest" and "Said She Was a Dancer," Anderson's two aging rock-star's-eye-view accounts of meeting women from around the world. The antiwar song "Mountain Men" is classic Tull-styled electric folk, all screaming electric guitars at a pretty high volume by its end. Overall, this is a fairly successful album and arguably their best since 1978, even if it does seem a little insignificant in relation to, say, Thick As a Brick. By this time Tull was effectively a core trio of Anderson, Barre, and bassist Dave Pegg, augmented by whatever musicians (drummers Gerry Conway and Doane Perry, Fairport Convention keyboard player Martin Allcock, and violinist Ric Sanders) that they needed to fill out their sound. The result is a very lean-sounding group and a record probably as deserving of a Grammy as any other album of its year — in the cosmic scheme, it sort of made up for Tull's not winning one for Thick As a Brick or Aqualung, or for Dave Pegg's former band Fairport Convention never winning. AMG
An Evening with Dave Grusin is essentially the soundtrack to the Blu-Ray DVD product, and an app for the iPad, both of which have loads more features. The composer, arranger, and pianist conducts the 75-piece Henry Mancini Orchestra in a live program of his own music – tunes written for cinema – as well as the works of composers Gershwin, Bernstein, and Mancini. The show was co-produced by Grusin's longstanding business associate and collaborator Larry Rosen and Phil Ramone.
Features 24 bit remastering and comes with a mini-description. Early work from David Fathead Newman – so early, the cover has him listed as "Dave" on the front! The album steps nicely off Newman's early work with Ray Charles – and does plenty to establish him as a leader on his own – putting Newman's bold, soulful tenor right upfront in the mix – and backing him with small combo players who include Marcus Belgrave on trumpet, Norris Austin on piano, and Hank Crawford on a bit of piano! There's a deep undercurrent that's mighty nice – almost a rootsier quality than on other Newman albums – and titles include "Cellar Groove", "Hello There", "Alto Sauce", and "Scufflin'".
This disc is a bit unusual in a few ways. Vibraphonist Dave Pike sticks here exclusively to the marimba, while pianist Herbie Hancock is heard throughout on organ, an instrument he rarely played again. The band also includes two trumpeters (most notably Clark Terry who has a few short solos) and a rhythm section with guitarist Billy Butler. Most of the music consists of obscurities and is open to the influences of the boogaloo and pop rhythms of the era; highlights include Hancock's "Blind Man, Blind Man," "Sunny" and "Devilette." An interesting effort.