Comprised of two side long suites, the Chirco sound compares to early Journey, Styx and Strongbow, simply put this is a fantastic progressive rock find.
Written by: Eric
LABEL: Crested Butte Records
SERIAL: CB 701 598
CD REISSUE: Discogs Reissue List
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:
LINEUP: Tony Chirco – electronic vibes, drums, percussion * Anvil Roth – lead vocals * John Naylor – Guitar, vocals * Bruce Taylor – bass, vocals * Ted MacKenzie – drums * S.H.Foote – keyboards
TRACK LISTING: 01 Sound Of The Cross * 02 33 Years * 03 ‘Cause I Love You * 04 Golden Image * 05 Dear Friends * 06 Mister Sunshine Parable * 07 Minutes * 08 Child Of Peace
A quick glance at the album cover and you probably think this is one of those rural country rock albums with psych influences that collectors can’t seem to get enough of. Not the case with ‘Visitation’ you’ll be happy to know and surprise, surprise – Chirco were originally from suburban New York City.
Under the moniker Sassafrass, the record was hobbled together with the band and a variety of session musicians, before heading to Denver, Colorado where apparently they felt the music scene was a little more in tune to their material.
Fate brought renamed Chirco to a shady Chilean entrepreneur dabbling in the music biz with his newly formed label – Crested Butte. Copies were pressed, but the South American was better at spending money, most of it not his own on everything other than Chirco’s record with no promotion whatsoever.
Tales of cartons filled with records thrown in the trash or given away with purchase of other albums were disheartening and the band fell apart, with the record company owner fleeing Federal authorities to Chile only to be extradited back to the States for prosecution and spending a couple years in the slammer.
Comprised of two side long suites ‘Older Than Ancient’ and ‘Younger Than New’, the Chirco sound is very much in the style of Journey‘s first three albums, early Styx and Strongbow.
Simply put this is a fantastic progressive rock find with vocalist Anvil Roth sounding remarkably like Dennis DeYoung and on first listen it’s easy to figure out why these guys would never have gone over big in New York since their sound owes so much to Midwestern prog.
Instrumentally Chirco blow out heavy, but tuneful Journey meets Deep Purple riffs with Krautrock-ish jazz rock tendencies. Songs like ‘Cause I Love You’ and ‘Mister Sunshine’ show the band had pop aspirations and pre-dated the golden era of AOR.
Heck, if they had developed beyond ‘Visitation’ for another two or three albums, Chirco might have become arena rock contenders or more than likely mentioned in the same whispered tones as another Colorado band – the god-like Alpha Centauri and other indie pomp contenders of the same period.
Reissued on CD twice by Akarma and Gear Fab, Chirco is finally receiving their due among music fans, which after this review will include a few Glory Daze readers – we hope! Oh, and that Chilean business man? He ended up running back to South America in the ’80s due to twenty three counts of fraud brought against him by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
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