Monday, April 08, 2013

Sights and Sounds: Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark, Walter Trout

Here is the latest roundup of several new items from a couple of great artists...


On May 7 2013, Eagle Rock Entertainment will release Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark’s first ever Blu-ray Live - Architecture & Morality & More.

Featuring the classic OMD line-up of Andy McCluskey, Paul Humphreys, Malcolm Holmes and Martin Cooper, this show was exclusively recorded on the band’s hugely successful UK and European tour in 2007. For the early part of this tour, including this concert recorded at London’s Hammersmith Apollo, the concert was split into two halves. The first part of the evening was a complete performance of the Architecture & Morality album, while the second half was a greatest hits set covering the rest of the band’s career. The concert is spectacularly presented with films specially created to complement the songs running on huge screens around the stage.

Architecture & Morality, originally released in 1981, is considered by many to be the pinnacle of Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark’s career. This album, a staple of British New Wave and synthpop, spawned three Top 5 UK singles and the album itself peaked at No.3, as well as skyrocketing the band into worldwide recognition.

In addition to this two-tier concert, the Blu-ray includes bonus alternate edits of “Joan of Arc (Maid Of Orleans),” and “The New Stone Age,” as well as interviews with the band members and director Hari Haralambous.

Live – Architecture & Morality & More clearly underscores why the band are beloved by so many music fans. Additionally, there will be a new OMD studio album English Electric released on April 8 and the band will be on tour in April 2013!

Eagle Rock Entertainment is the largest producer and distributor of music programming for DVD, Blu-Ray, TV, Audio and Digital Media in the world. Eagle works directly alongside talent to produce top quality, High Definition and 3D programs, both concerts and documentaries, including The Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, The Who, Queen, The Doors, Jeff Beck, U2, Peter Gabriel, Paul McCartney and Ozzy Osbourne. Eagle is a Grammy Award winning company and has received over 30 multi-platinum, over 50 platinum and over 90 gold discs, worldwide. Eagle Rock Entertainment has offices in London, New York, Toronto, Paris and Hamburg.



Title is Trout's First Covers Album in Illustrious Career In Tribune To Luther Allison

Walter Trout has released 22 solo albums over a career that has spanned the globe, and delivered notoriety as one of the great purveyors of the Blues. At the age of 62, in tribute to friend and legend, the late, great Luther Allison, he has recorded a album of covers for the very first time. Trout reveals, "I’ve thought about doing this album for years. Luther was one of the all-time greats, and it was just an unbelievably potent thing to watch him perform. Just the energy and commitment that guy had, he was one of a kind. We played together once, and just as we walked offstage, somebody pointed a camera and we hugged and smiled. And that photo is on the cover of the CD. When he died [in 1997], the idea of this album was planted in my brain." Luther's Blues will be released on June 11th via Mascot Label Group's Provogue.

Trout's back-story is a page-turner you won’t want to put down. Five decades in the making; it is equal parts thriller, romance, suspense and horror. There are musical fireworks, critical acclaim and fists-aloft triumph, offset by wilderness years and brushes with the jaws of narcotic oblivion. From 1973 when he left his New Jersey home headed to Los Angeles, he followed a road that afforded him an opportunity to just play, sharing the stage as a sideman with Jesse Ed Davis, Big Mama Thornton, Lowell Fulson, Joe Tex, and of course the great John Mayall following a 3 year tenure in Canned Heat. Trout recalls, "As far as being a blues-guitar sideman, the Bluesbreakers gig is the pinnacle. That’s Mount Everest. You could play with B.B. King or Buddy Guy, but you’re just gonna play chords all night. This guy features you. You get to play solos. He yells your name after every song, brings you to the front of the stage, and lets you sing. He creates a place for you in the world." And that destiny continued on down a road that has been nothing but prolific.

On March 6, 1989, the guitarist who had brought thrilling flammability to the Breakers’ sound and produced stone-cold classics including "One Life To Live," was newly sober and on his 38th birthday sensed the hand of destiny. He walked away from the Bluesbreakers, embarking on a solo career that has yielded a catalogue that establishes a deep legacy in the world of Blues. A quarter century later, what seemed like career suicide has been vindicated by 22 solo albums, a still-growing army of fans, and accolades including a nod as “the world’s greatest rock guitarist” in legendary DJ Bob Harris’ autobiography The Whispering Years, and a #6 placing on BBC Radio One’s countdown of the Top 20 Guitarists of All Time. Meanwhile, Trout’s most recent original album, Blues For The Modern Daze, was heralded by titles like Classic Rock Blues as perhaps his finest to date. In the U.S., USA Today selected the track "Lonely" as their Pick of the Week publishing, "Trout is the man who followed Eric Clapton, Peter Green and Mick Taylor as chief guitarist for John Mayall's blues outfit, and who had a long career as a leader of his own band. He brings all of his life experiences to bear on Modern Daze. " Trout offers, “I feel like with Modern Daze I found the style I’ve been searching for over 20 albums. It’s working, it comes out good, and I can play it well.”

Of all the peaks in Trout’s trajectory, his abiding memory of the late Chicago bluesman is perhaps the most literal. It’s 1986, and high above Lake Geneva, at the palatial Alpine chalet of late Montreux Jazz Festival Svengali Claude Nobs, lunch is being served. “So we’re up at the top of the Alps,” Trout recalls, “in this big room with John Mayall, Buddy Guy, Junior Wells, Robert Cray, Otis Rush, and as we’re eating, Dr. John is serenading us on acoustic piano. I sat there with Luther Allison, and we had a great talk."

This collection was bottled at Hollywood’s Entourage Studios alongside producer Eric Corne: the same combination that birthed 2012’s acclaimed solo release, Blues For The Modern Daze. The atmosphere, remembers Trout, was one of spit, grit and seat-of-the-pants energy: “Spontaneity is so important with this sort of music. Everybody was saying, ‘Well, aren’t you gonna get together and rehearse?’, but you don’t want to over-analyse or get too sterile. This album was all pretty much first or second takes. It’s gotta have warts on it. It’s gotta have a bit of grease in it.”

As Walter Trout powers into his 25th year as a solo star, there’s no whiff of the ennui or creative autopilot that hobbles the later output of most veterans. On the contrary, there’s a sense of growing momentum, perhaps even of a little surprise. “It’s hard to believe I’m still alive, to be honest,” he smiles. “I should have been dead by 30, with the life I was leading. But I still have a career, and at 62, I’m still climbing the ladder, which keeps it exciting, instead of trying to rekindle past glories. I feel like I play with more fire than when I was 25. I’m still reaching, y' know…?”

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