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Focus – Focus 3

Review: 022
Date: 3 May 01

 


Rating: 3 Stars

Musicians:
Thijs Van Leer – Keyboards, Flute, Penny Whistle
Jan Akkerman – Guitars
Bert Ruiter – Bass
Pierre Van Der Linden – Time Keeper and Long Boring Drum Solo’s

Tracks Listing:
1. Round Goes The Gossip
2. Love Remembered
3. Sylvia
4. Carnival Fugue
5. Focus III
6. Answers? Questions! Questions? Answers!
7. Elspeth Of Nottingham
8. Anonymus Two

 


Focus were certainly the best band to come out of Holland in the Seventies. (Don’t give me Golden Earring. “Radar Love” was a great song, but what else did they have in their biscuit barrel?)

Focus were formed in Amsterdam in 1969 and they became a major concert attraction in Europe, playing extended songs with lots of classical bits thrown in. Over the years their music matured and some would say peaked with 1972’s Focus 3.

Some great guitar, keyboard and flute work disguised the fact that none of them could sing or even speak English. As a substitute there were lots of blood curdling screams, orgasmic groans, triumphant shrieks and choir-like choruses.

Focus 3 starts off with the spritely jazz tinged “Round Goes The Gossip”. This was followed by six, short, well constructed rock songs including the band’s biggest single success in the riff laden “Sylvia” (The Bizarre Hocus Pocus complete with manic yodeling coming from the previous album “Moving Waves”).

But it’s the second half of this C.D where the songs are extended up to 27 minutes where the band members are allowed to come into their own, kick off their clogs and go for the solos.

The interplay between keyboards, flute, guitar and even a rocked out penny whistle is absolutely mesmerizing, with each musician pushing the other to the limit.

The only thing that puts the old tail between the legs a bit is the over long bass and drums solos at the end. This Dog always thinks that drums solos are to allow the rest of the band a break (drummers don’t need them). Therefore, on record they become a little tedious, especially when listening to them for the second or third time round.

For this culpable sin I deduct 2 stars from the otherwise true forgotten Classic.

 

Pawed by Mott The Dog
Remastered by Ella Crew

E-mail: review@mott-the-dog.com


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