Saturday, 19 January 2019

The Nice - Live Sweden '67, album review


My introduction to The Nice was their 1968 album – one of my first – Ars Longa Vita Brevis [reviewed here] and though I do have and know a little their eponymous The Thoughts of Emerlist Davjack [on cd] this was much more recently, in relative terms, and you never get to remember in the way a teenage stand-out played over and over will have embedded.

Therefore, listening this morning to The Nice – Live Sweden ’67, it all sounds quite fresh and refreshing, that early experimentation and Keith Emerson establishing the organ as a main player, and fine guitar work from Davy O List. It is an excellent recording, the band having just finished a tour with Jimi Hendrix and Pink Floyd, and for broadcast on Sveriges Radio in Gothenburg. It is announced at the beginning that the band didn't expect to be playing the show and that the 'strange equipment' implies it isn't theirs...

I say ‘experimentation’ but in fact the covers are quite standard if distinctive because of the foregrounded organ, but I mean a track like Rondo where Emerson displays his trademark virtuosity. Great fun.

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