Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Wizzard Brew

British readers will be familiar with Wizzard's run of smash hit singles from the golden era of glam but probably not even aware of this album.  Wizzard's Brew was the band's first album and was released in 1973.  Roy Wood, formerly of the Move and founder member of the Electric Light Orchestra, was the band's leader, producer, arranger, writer, singer and multi-instrumentalist (guitars, brass, woodwind, cello, percussion). Roy's supporting cast consisted of former Move and ELO band mate Rick Price - bass, percussion, vocals, Bill Hunt - keyboards, brass, vocals, Hugh McDowell, also from ELO - cello, keyboards, Nick Pentelow - reeds, flute, vocals, Mick Burnley - reeds, flute, Keith Smart - drums and Charlie Grima - drums, percussion.

Wizzard Brew
What the average teenage glam fan made of this album is anyone's guess.  The blend of Elvis, Bach, be-bop, dixieland, hymns, Little Richard, military marches, Glen Miller, doo-wop, Salvation Army brass band, Hendrix, football terrace songs and Phil Spector is totally unique.  It is no wonder that Wood fell out with Jeff Lynne over control of ELO, this is light years away from Eldorado!  Not a frequent listen but very entertaining and welcome when the opportunity arises.

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