Rare Bird


Band members                             Related acts

  line-up 1 (1966-69) as Lunch

- Mark Ashton (aka Mark McVey) -- drums, percussion, backing

  vocals

- Graham Fields (aka Graham Stansfield) (RIP 2018) -- keyboards

- Steve Gould -- vocals, rhythm guitar

- Chris Randall - guitar

 

  line-up 2 (1969-71) as Rare Bird

- Mark Ashton (aka Mark McVey) -- drums, percussion, backing

  vocals

- Graham Fields (aka Graham Stansfield) (RIP 2018) -- keyboards

- Steve Gould -- vocals, bass, rhythm guitar

- Chris Randall - guitar

 

  line-up 2 (1971-72)

- Mark Ashton (aka Mark McVey) -- drums, percussion, backing

   vocals

NEW - Andy "Ced" Curtis -- vocals, lead guitar

- Steve Gould -- vocals, bass, rhythm guitar

NEW- David Kaffinetti (aka David Ewer, aka David Kaff, 

   aka Viv Savage) --  keyboards, backing vocals

   (replaced David Fields)

NEW - Fred Kelly -- drums, percussion, backing vocals

- Nic Potter (RIP 2013) -- bass, guitar

 

  line-up 3 (1972-73)

- Andy "Ced" Curtis -- vocals, lead guitar

- Steve Gould -- vocals, bass, rhythm guitar

 - David Kaffinetti (aka David Ewer, aka David Kaff, 

   aka Viv Savage) --  keyboards, backing vocals

NEW- Paul Karas -- bass (replaced Nic Potter)

- Fred Kelly -- drums, percussion, backing vocals

 

  supporting musicians (1972)

- Ashley Howe -- percussion 

- Chris Kelly -- percussion

- Paul Korda --  percussion 

- Nic Potter -- percussion 

  line-up 4 (1974-75)

- Steve Gould -- vocals, bass, rhythm guitar, keyboards, sax

- David Kaffinetti (aka David Ewer, aka David Kaff, 

   aka Viv Savage) --  keyboards, backing vocals

- Fred Kelly -- drums, percussion, backing vocals

NEW - Andy Rae -- bass, guitar (replaced Paul Karas)

 

  supporting musicians (1974)

- Kevin Lamb -- backing vocals, keyboards

- Peter Rice -- percussion

 

 

 

 

- Al and Paul (Paul Karas)

Mark Ashton (solo efforts)

- The Association (Paul Holland)

- Jango Edwards and Friends Roadshow (Paul Holland)

- Fields (David Fields)

- Fresh (David Kaffinetti)

- The Fruit Machine (Steve Gould and Andy Curtis)

- Headstone (Mark Ashton)

- Horace (Andy Curtis)

- Jaklin (Andy Rae)

- Paul Karas (solo efforts)

- The Linda Imperial Band (David Kaffinetti)

- The Alvin Lee Band (Steve Gould)

- The Long Hello (Andy Curtis)

- Martin Murray and The Honeycomb (Chris Randall)

- Natural Gas (David Kaffinetti)

- The New World (David Fields)

- Runner (Steve Gould)

- Savoy Brown (Andy Rae)

- Spinal Tap  ( David Kaffinetti)

- Stackridge (Paul Karas)

- Stonebridge McGuinness (Paul Karas)

- Tapestry (David Fields)

- Thundermother (Fred Kelly)

- The Tonics (Paul Karas)

- Touchwood (Paul Karas)

- Turnstyle (Mark Ashton)

- Van der Graaf Generator (Nic Potter)

- The Walham Green East Wapping Carpet Cleaning Rodent and

  Boggit Exterminating Association (Andy Curtis and Steve Gould)

 

 

 


 

Genre: progressive

Rating: *** (3 stars)

Title:  Rare Bird

Company: Probe

Catalog: CPLP-4514

Year: 1969

Grade (cover/record): VG-/VG

Country/State: UK/US

Comments: minor ring and edge wear with 3 inches of tape along the lower right seam; gatefold sleeve' not for sale sticker on back cover; hard to notice blue ink writing on back cover

Available: SOLD

Catalog ID: SOLD 4868

Price: SOLD $15.00

 

Based in London, Rare Bird featured the talents of ex-Turnstyle drummer Mark Ashton, keyboardists Graham Fields and David Kaffinetti and former Fruit Machine singer/bassist Steve Gould.

 

Using Fields' London apartment (bet the neighbors were thrilled), the quartet began rehearsing in late 1969, quickly deciding on a then-unique guitarless, two keyboard line up.  Within a matter of months they were attracting rave word of mouth notices, which led to a residency in London's famed Marquee Club.  The resulting publicity brought record labels calling, including Charisma, which promptly signed them to a contract.  In the States ABC's newly formed Probe subsidiary acquired distribution rights.

 

Teamed with producer John Anthony, the cleverly-titled "Rare Bird" found the band making the most of their twin keyboard line up.  Powered by Gould's deep voice and the twin keyboards, dark and droning material such as "Beautiful Scarlet" and "Bird On a Wing" is firmly rooted in early-'70s progressive moves.  Anyone familiar and comfortable with ELP and Yes (though without the sci-fi lyrics), will probably like this one.  While the sound is certainly dated, most of the nine tracks are quite good.  Personal favorites include the ominous "God of War" (with some wild percussion from Ashton) and the atypically rocking "Times".  The album generated considerable media attention, eventually peaking at # 117 in the States.  (It was originally released with a gatefold sleeve.  The US cover is different than the UK version.)

 

"Rare Bird" track listing:

(side 1)

1.) Beautiful Scarlet (Mark Ashton - Steve Gould - David Kaffinetti - Graham Field) - 5:23

2.) Sympathy (Mark Ashton - Steve Gould - David Kaffinetti - Graham Field) - 2:30

3.) Natures Fruit (Mark Ashton - Steve Gould - David Kaffinetti - Graham Field) - 2:32

4,) Bird On a Wing (Mark Ashton - Steve Gould - David Kaffinetti - Graham Field) - 

 

(side 1)

1.) God of War (Mark Ashton - Steve Gould - David Kaffinetti - Graham Field) - 5:08

2.) Iceberg (Mark Ashton - Steve Gould - David Kaffinetti - Graham Field) - 6:46

3.) Times (Mark Ashton - Steve Gould - David Kaffinetti - Graham Field) - 3:19

4.) You Went Away (Mark Ashton - Steve Gould - David Kaffinetti - Graham Field) - 4:17

5.) Melanie (Mark Ashton - Steve Gould - David Kaffinetti - Graham Field) - 3:27

 

 

Thouygh it has not been updated since 2004, Rare Bird super fan Jupiter Space created a nice Rare Bird  website at: JupiterSpace's RARE BIRD Web Site (angelfire.com)

 

 

 

 


Genre: progressive

Rating: **** (4 stars)

Title:  Epic Forest

Company: Poydor

Catalog: PD 5530

Year: 1972

Grade (cover/record): VG+/VG+

Country/State: UK/US

Comments: no bonus 45 or poster

Available: 1

Catalog ID: --

Price: $25.00

 

1972's "Epic Forest" was recorded in the wake of several significant personnel changes.  Founding member/keyboard player Graham Fields left, quickly reappearing fronting the band Fields.  Rather than finding another keyboard player former Fruit Machine guitarist Andy "Ced" Curtis was brought in as a replacement.  Bassist Nic Potter was replaced by Paul Karas.  At the same time singer Steve Gould picking up rhythm guitar duties.  Along with the personnel changes the revamped band left Tony Stratton-Smith's Charisma label for a new deal with Polydor Records. In an odd partnership the album was co-produced by the band and former Association member Paul Holland. I'd love to know how that partnership came about.  

 

As you'd expect, injecting a lead guitarist into the mix had a major impact on the band's sound.  In spite of the album title and the extended title track, material like the blue-eyed soul opener 'Baby Listen', the dark ballad 'Her Darkest Hour' and the atmospheric rocker 'Turning the Lights Out' found the group moving away from their earlier keyboard dominated progressive sound towards shorter, more mainstream and commercial sounds.  Fans of the first two albums were likely disappointed by the changes, but I have to say it didn't bother me all that much.  Gould and Curtis both had nice voices with the group displaying a knack for sweet harmonies (exemplified by songs like 'Epic Forest', 'Hey Man' and 'Turn It All Around' - the latter two even showcasing a touch of Crosby, Stills and Nash influence.  Featuring all original group compositions, the twelve songs (including the three tunes on the bonus 45) all sported nice melodies and enthusiastic performances.  Check out some of Curtis' lovely guitar on tracks like the simmering ballad 'Fears of the Night' and the roaring rocker 'Title No, 1 Again (BIrdman)'.  

 

"Epic Forest" track listing:

(side 1)

1.) Baby Listen  (David Kaffinetti - Paul Karas - Ced Curtis - Fred Kelly - Steve Gould) - 3:25 rating: **** stars

Powered by a hyperactive Paul Karas bass line and  Gould' and Curitis's growling, soulful voices, 'Baby Listen' offered up an impressive and unexpected slice of blue-eyed soul.  Add in some thundering twin lead guitar from Curtis and Gould (?) and I've always been puzzled why this one wasn't the lead single.  

2.) Hey Man  ( David Kaffinetti - Paul Karas - Ced Curtis - Fred Kelly - Steve Gould) - 5:53 rating: **** stars

I'm a sucker for harmony-rich performances and with Gould and Curtis trading lead vocals, 'Hey Man' simply spills over in that department.  A sweet and soothing country-rock tinged ballad, one of the song's most interesting features is that without knowing anything about the band you'd be hard pressed to figure out they were English.  The track also included one of Curtis' best solos.  It made an interesting choice as a US single.  Not the song I would have chosen as the single.

 

 

 

 

- 1972's 'Hey Man' b/w 'Her Darkest Hour' (Polydor catalog number PD-15081)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3.) House In the City  ( David Kaffinetti - Paul Karas - Ced Curtis - Fred Kelly - Steve Gould) - 4:24 rating: *** stars

Opening up with some jazzy Curtis lead guitar, combined with Kaffinetti's pretty keybaords the ballad 'House In the City' could have been mistaken for a early Steely Dan track.  Pretty, but never reached the same level as some of their other material.  Admittedly this one has a strong "ear candy" factor and I have found myself humming the melody.

4.) Epic Forest   ( David Kaffinetti - Paul Karas - Ced Curtis - Fred Kelly - Steve Gould) - 9:16 rating: **** stars

The album's longest and most progressive performance, the nine minute + 'Epic Forest' bounced between  pretty, almost pastoral sections and harder rock jams.  Bolstered by nice vocals from both Curtis and Gould (in a couple segments their voices reminded me of Squeeze's Chris Difford and Glenn Tilbrook), and plenty of soloing from the members.  Call it progressive for folks who don't like progressive music.

 

(side 1)

1.) Turning the Lights Out  ( David Kaffinetti - Paul Karas - Ced Curtis - Fred Kelly - Steve Gould) - 4:45 rating: *** stars

An atmospheric rocker, 'Turning the Lights Out' sounded like a mash-up of Allman Brothers-styled Southern rock, Ambrosia Yacht-rock and Spyro Gyra jazzy moves.  Very mid-'70s corporate rock sound a good five years before it became fashionable.

2.) Her Darkest Hour  ( David Kaffinetti - Paul Karas - Ced Curtis - Fred Kelly - Steve Gould) - 3:33 rating: **** stars

One of my favorite Rare Bird performances ...  Opening up with some beautiful Curtis acoustic guitar, 'Her Darkest Hour' is dark, depressing and has a gorgeous melody.  Always wondered how Karas got the distorted bass sound.

3.) Fears of the Night  ( David Kaffinetti - Paul Karas - Ced Curtis - Fred Kelly - Steve Gould) - 3:19 rating: *** stars

Cut from the same cloth as 'Her Darkest Hour', 'Fears of the Night' was another dark and pretty ballad. Docked a star for having a slightly under-whelming melody.

4.) Turn It All Around  ( David Kaffinetti - Paul Karas - Ced Curtis - Fred Kelly - Steve Gould) - 4:45 rating: **** stars

'Turn It All Around' started out sounding like another sensitive ballad and about 90 second in Curtis' guitar unexpectedly exploded the tune into a full-on rocker with a bit of Zeppelin influences thrown in.  Add in some tasty Kaffinetti Moog and lovely group vocals and this was the kind of song the late Gary Wright and Spooky Tooth always dreamed about writing and recording.

5.) Title No, 1 Again (BIrdman)  ( David Kaffinetti - Paul Karas - Ced Curtis - Fred Kelly - Steve Gould) - 6:05  rating: **** stars

The romping 'Title No, 1 Again (BIrdman)' has always reminded me of a more commercial version of Yes.  Built on a great riff, the group vocals and Kaffinetti's Moog solo remind me of Yes.  Another interesting choice for an American single.

 

 

 

 

 

- 1972's 'Birdman - Part One (Title No.1 Again) b/w 'Birdman - Part One (Title No.1  Again)' (Polydor catalog number PD-15079)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Unlike the US release, the original UK pressing featured a gatefold sleeve and included a poster and a three track bonus 33 rpm 45:

 

 

 

 

 

- 1972's 'Roadside Welcome' and 'Four Grey Walls' b/w 'You're Lost' (Polydor catalog number 2814- 011)

 

(side 1)

1.) Roadside Welcome  ( David Kaffinetti - Paul Karas - Ced Curtis - Fred Kelly - Steve Gould) - 6:05  rating: **** stars

 Opening up with some pretty David Kaffinetti electric piano, 'Roadside Welcome' showcased the band's sweeter side - pretty melody and strong harmony vocals.  Would have made a nice early-'70s single.

2.) Four Grey Walls  ( David Kaffinetti - Paul Karas - Ced Curtis - Fred Kelly - Steve Gould) - 6:05  rating: **** stars

Awesome conventional rocker.  Maybe not super original, but the track demonstrated these guys could rock out.  

 

(side 2)

1.) You're Lost  ( David Kaffinetti - Paul Karas - Ced Curtis - Fred Kelly - Steve Gould) - 6:05  rating: **** stars

Easily the best performance on the whole LP/bonus single ...  Funky, jazzy and rocking at the same time.  Gould's vocals have always reminded me a bit of Ace's Paul Carrack.   

 

 

 

 


Genre: progressive

Rating: **** (4 stars)

Title:  Somebody's Watching

Company: Polydor

Catalog: PD-6502

Year: 1973

Grade (cover/record): VG+/VG+

Country/State: UK/US

Comments: minor ring wear, cut top left corner

Available: SOLD

Catalog ID: SOLD 4869

Price: SOLD $20.00

 

 

1973's self-produced "Somebody's Watching" found Rare Bird largely abandoning their progressive roots.  To my ears, by this point in their career the outfit had essentially become a conventional rock band.  The only real link to their progressive past came in the form of the closing instrumental 'Dollars' which struck me as an interesting instrumental adaptation of Ennio Morricone's 'A Few Dollars More' meets Steve Winwood and Traffic.  Elsewhere, featuring largely group-penned material, songs such as the tile track and 'Third Time Around' were shorter, more focused and quite commercial (as in suitable for radio).  With the previous addition of lead guitarist Andy Curtis, Steve Gould seemed to have finally become comfortable as lead singer.  That was certainly the case when listening to tracks like the poppy ballad Turn Your Head', the blue-eyed soul 'More and More' and the hard rock number 'Hard Time.'  While nothing here initially jumped out at me, this has proven one of those collections that gets better the more I listen to it.  It's certainly varied covering genres ranging from blue-eyed soul to Italian western soundtracks, but the performances are uniformly engaging.  Curtis proved an economical player throughout, but when he took the spotlight the results were always engaging.  As mentioned earlier, Gould finally seemed comfortable as lead singer and he effortlessly showcased his vocal breadth and flexibilities.  Longtime progressive fans probably put a curse on the collection, but its one that I actually come back to on a regular basis.  (Again, 'Dollars' sounds great on a good stereo system.  (For the hardcore fans out there (both of you), the original English pressing was released with a gatefold sleeve.  The US released wasn't.)

 

"Rare Bird" track listing:

(side 1)

1.) Somebody's Watching (Steve Gould - Fred Kelly - David Kaffinetti - Andy Curtis) - 5:25 rating: **** stars

The first time I heard 'Somebody's Watching' I walked over to the turntable to make sure this was a Rare Bird album.  Expecting to hear another two sides of their patented progressive sounds?  Well Steve Gould and the rest of the band sounded downright funky ...  Yeah, I know the description "funky" and Rare Bird don't seem to go together.  It won't appeal to everyone, but I have to admit I got a kick out of the tune.  Always loved David Kaffinetti's cheesy '70s synthesizer solos.

 

 

 

 

 

- 1973's 'Somebody's Watching (Part1 ) b/w ('Somebody's Watching (Part 2) (Polydor catalog number PD 15087).


 

 

 

 

 

2.) Third Time Around (Steve Gould - Fred Kelly - David Kaffinetti - Andy Curtis) - 4:55 rating: **** stars

Perhaps not quite a big an aural shock as the opener, the rocker 'Third Time Around' was still an unexpected change of pace. Spurred on by a nifty melody, the song offered up a nice introduction to the Andy Curtis' tasteful guitar moves.  Quite FM radio friendly, though the mid-song jam section lost a bit of steam.

3.) Turn Your Head (Steve Gould - Fred Kelly - David Kaffinetti - Andy Curtis) - 4:38 rating: **** stars

Opening up with some deep space sound effects, the ballad 'Turn Your Head' initially sounded like it would more in keeping with longtime fans were probably expecting to hear.  LOL, it wasn't.  Instead, propelled by the catchy title track refrain, this was was one of the prettier and more commercial tunes the band ever recorded.  True ear candy and should have been a single.

4.) More and More (Steve Gould - Fred Kelly - David Kaffinetti - Andy Curtis) - 4:05  rating: **** stars

Perhaps it's just my old ears, but on the blue-eyed soul tinged 'More and More' Gould's vocals have always reminded me of Paul Carrack.  I like Carrack so that was a good thing from my perspective.  Certainly won't be the case for everyone.  Nice Kaffinetti electric keyboards.

 

(side 1)

1.) Hard Time (Blondie Chaplin - Ricky Fataar) - 3:06  rating: **** stars

'Hard Times was written by The Flames members Blondie Chaplin and Ricky Fataar during their early-'70s partnership with The Beach Boys.  The song was originally intended for The Beach Boys' "Holland" LP but didn't make the final cut.   It finally appeared on The Beach Boys' 2022 "Sail On Sailor" compilation.  The Rare Bird version stick pretty close to the original; slowing it down a tick and dropping some of the harmony vocals.  One of the album highlights.  The sound and video quality are poor, but YouTube has a nifty, up-tempo performance of the tune recorded at a 1975 Drury Lane concert: Rare Bird - Hard Time 1977 - YouTube

2.) Who Is the Hero (Kevin Lamb) - 3:30 rating: *** stars

'Who Is the Hero' was a pretty cover of the Kevin Lamb ballad.  Lamb provided backing vocals.  Nice chorus, but I found it a little over-arching for my tastes.  John Wetton guested on bass.

3.) High In the Morning (Paul Korda) - 3:30  rating: **** star
The late Paul Korda is probably best known as a member of Dada and a member of the original London cast of "Hair."  Not sure how Rare Bird stumbled across his 'High In the Morning', but their cover of the ballad  was dark and made for another album highlight.

4.) Dollars (instrumental) (Steve Gould - Fred Kelly - David Kaffinetti - Andy Curtis - Ennio Morricone) - 8:38  rating: **** star

Kudos to the band for giving Ennio Morricone a co-writing credit since the instrumental 'Dollars' owed a gigantic debt to his 'For a Few Dollars More'.  I guess it's the album's most progressive-oriented performance (perhaps the only progressive-oriented song), but the more I listen to it, the more it registers as a slice of jam band rock.  Curtis was particularly good.  Not sure if he was double tracked, but there was a wonderful Allman Brothers styled, twin-lead guitars section.  Not a criticism since the eight + minutes give each member a chance to stretch out and show their chops.

 

 

 

 

 


Genre: rock

Rating: *** (3 stars)

Title:  Born Again

Company: Polydor

Catalog: PD-6506

Year: 1974

Grade (cover/record): VG+/VG+

Country/State: UK/US

Comments: --

Available: 1

Catalog ID: --

Price: $25.00

 

There's kind of a Spinal Tap parallel going on with the release of Rare Bird's fifth and final studio album - 1974's wishfully titled "Born Again."   While the legendary Spinal Tap couldn't keep a drummer, Rare Bird couldn't keep a bass player.  This time around it was goodbye to Paul Karas and hello to former Jaklin member Andy Rae.  (By the way, there's a certain irony in those comments since under the name David Kaff, keyboardist David Kaffinetti reappeared as a member of Spinal Tap.)   Judging by the album notes and album cover, Rare Bird also appeared to have lost their lead guitarist Andy "Ced" Curtis.  Curiously, Curtis co-produced the album, co-wrote at least one of the songs ('Redman') and seemingly participated in the sessions, but his name was missing from the performance credits and he wasn't on the group photo that graced the back cover which showed the band as a trio (left to right): Steve Gould, Fred Kelly and David Kaffinetti.

 

Co-produced by singer Gould, Curtis and Peter Rice, with the possible exception of the closer 'Last Tango in Beulah', with this release the band dropped all pretenses of being progressive proponents.  In it's place tracks like 'Body and Soul', 'Reaching You' and 'Lonely Street' found them staking out their spot in the corporate yacht-rock sweepstakes.  Their progressive fans will howl with disdain, but taken as a commercial rock album the results weren't bad.  Virtually any one of these ten songs would have effortlessly slotted into mid-'70 FM radio.  Highlights included their take on the annihilation of native Americans ('Redman'), the bouncy, extended closer 'Last Tango in Beulah' and the wonderful ballad 'Peace of Mind.'  To my ears the latter was one of their career-best performances.  Steve Gould remained a criminally overlooked singer.  Easy to understand why Alvin Lee grabbed him shortly after Rare Bird called it quits. Similarly, David Kaffinetti's talents were never fully recognized.  Assuming Curtis was responsible for the guitar, his work remained economical and tasteful throughout.  Yeah, it's easy to condemn a band as selling out, but music is a business and musicians need to pay their bills.  You can't live on accolades from the critics.

 

Is it my favorite Rare Bird collection?  Nah, but it isn't nearly as bad as most folks would have you believe.

 

"Rare Bird" track listing:

(side 1)

1.) Body and Soul  (Steve Gould - Camm) - 3:07  rating: *** stars

If you had your heart set on hearing some of the group's original progressive sounds then bouncy pop tune 'Body and Soul was going to leave you totally screwed.  On the other hand, if you were okay with Yacht rockers like Pablo Cruise, then this was going to leave you tapping your toes. Certainly commercial and thoroughly bland and forgettable. Perhaps that explains why Polydor tapped it as an English single.

 

 

 

 

- 1974's 'Body and Soul' b/w 'Redman' (Polydor catalog number 2058 471)

 

 

 

 

 

2.) Live for Each Other (Mark Ashton) - 2:53   rating: *** stars

Given it was written by original Rare Bird drummer Mark Ashton, I've always wondered if this was a previously shelved effort, or marked a "reunion" with Ashton.  Catchy, upbeat FM ready tune that showcased Gould's highly commercial voice.  The ending was a bit abrupt.

3.) Diamonds (Steve Gould - David Kaffinetti - Fred Kelly) - 4:08 

I'm not a Rare Bird scholar so I don't know the circumstances of its release, but Polydor seems to have released the song as a standalone promotional (perhaps intended for a fan club) flexi-disc.

 

- 1974's 'Diamonds' (Polydor catalog number SH01041-1)

 

 

4.) Reaching You (Steve Gould - David Kaffinetti - Fred Kelly) - 3:29  rating: ** stars

Geez, talk about an unexpected change in direction - the breezy ballad 'Reaching You' sounded like something a singer-songwriter like Rupert Holmes might  have recorded.   Nah, that wasn't meant as a compliment.  This one was bland enough to have served as a television sitcom theme song.

5.) Here In the Night (Steve Gould - David Kaffinetti - Fred Kelly)

 

(side 1)

1.) Redman  (Hall - Steve Gould - David Kaffinetti - Fred Kelly - Andy Curtis) - 3:42 rating: **** stars

In spite of the fact this was written by a group of white English guys a country with its share of abusing native peoples), I have to admit the sentiments were admirable.  Wrapped in a nice Kaffinetti-keyboard powered melody, it made for one of the album's standout performance.

2.) Peace of Mind (Steve Gould - David Kaffinetti - Fred Kelly) - 5:22  rating: ***** stars

With a nod to Gary Brooker and Procol Harum, the ballad 'Peace of Mind' was one of Rare Bird's best compositions.  A sweet melody combined with a wonderful set of thoughtful, introspective lyrics - the song had it all.  The talented  David Kaffinetti on Hammond B-3, a tasty Andy Curtis solo and the fantastic Steve Gould on lead vocals.  This should have been released as the single.

3.) Harlem  (Steve Gould - David Kaffinetti - Fred Kelly - Camm) - 3:22  rating: *** stars

Another pretty ballad with a touching, slightly country-tinged Gould lead vocal.

4.) Lonely Street  (Steve Gould - David Kaffinetti - Fred Kelly - Camm) - 3:15 rating: *** stars

I've always loved the 'Lonely Street' opening melody, though the song lost most of its energy when the vocals kicked in.  Speaking of the vocals, I've always wondered who handled the vocals - didn't sound like Steve Gould.  The song had previously appeared as the "B" side on the non-LP single 'Virginia.'

5.) Last Tango in Beulah (Steve Gould - David Kaffinetti - Fred Kelly)  - 6:31  rating: ***** stars

The album's longest performance, 'Last Tango in Beulah' served as a showcased for Kaffinetti's arsenal of keyboards and synthesizers (acoustic and electric piano, clavinet, Hammond, and Korg).  It started out sounding like it might revisit some of their progressive roots, but by the end of the song it was almost funky !!!  I see quite a few people comparing it to prime Supertramp.  I can hear the comparison and in spite of myself, I have to admit I love it.

 

 

The album did little sales wise, but  Polydor went ahead and released one final non-LP single:

- 1975's 'Don't Be Afraid' b/w 'Passing Thru' (Polydor catalog number 2058 591).

 

The band started some initial work on what would have been a sixth album - a planned half live and half new studio material set, but the project was shelved when the band called it quits.  

 

 

 

 

 

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