This live album from Robin Trower entered the US Album Top 10 in 1976, and would become a fan favourite thereafter, all of his 70’s discography are very collectible, less so his 80’s material.
Written by: gdmonline
ARTIST: Robin Trower
ALBUM: Robin Trower Live
SERIAL: CHR 1089
CD REISSUE: Discogs Reissue List
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: England
LINEUP: Robin Trower – guitar * James Dewar – bass, vocals * Bill Lordan – drums
TRACK LISTING: 01 Too Rolling Stoned * 02 Daydream * 03 Rock Me Baby * 04 Lady Love * 05 I Can’t Wait Much Longer * 06 Alethea * 07 Little Bit Of Sympathy
WEBLINKS: Site Link
The early albums from British blues rock guitarist Robin Trower are probably some of the best of that genre. By the late 70’s, Trower’s record label Chrysalis was putting pressure on him to release something that was radio-friendly and as a consequence some of the attributes which made him a favourite during the earlier part of the decade was lost in translation.
In this review, we’ll look at the sole live album he released during this period: 1976’s ‘Robin Trower Live!’. The 7 song set was actually recorded a year earlier at the Stockholm Concert Hall in Sweden on 3rd February 1975. Robin Trower’s understanding was that the concert was going to be taped for a radio broadcast only, as a result the trio went in ‘loose and uninhibited’ (Trower’s words) and ending up playing one of the definite live albums of that era.
There are only 7 tracks here (as mentioned), including the Trower classic ‘Too Rolling Stoned’ which just sounds unbelievably good. Adding to the occasion is Jim Dewar who shouldn’t be discounted as a vocalist in the same class as Paul Rodgers. ‘Daydream’ is a slower introspective piece, with Trower pulling some soulful notes out of the aether. At 8 minutes, it’s the longest song onboard.
Next up is Robin’s cover of the B.B King walnut ‘Rock Me Baby’. This version is damned good, and even though Frank Marino & Mahogany Rush‘s 1980 version is heavier, this one scores points for attitude and vibe. Some of Trower’s playing is off the wall! ‘Lady Love’ is another track taken from ‘Bridge Of Sighs’ (one of three) and is a shorter more rock-oriented affair without the drawn out solos.
We head into flanger overdrive for ‘I Can’t Wait Much Longer’, a slow to mid-tempo excursion, while ‘Alethea’ throws some ‘Purple Haze’ influences into the guitar mix, wah-wah’s to the fore. The set is completed by ‘Little Bit Of Sympathy’; an extended version that keeps much to the studio original from ‘Bridge Of Sighs’. It eventually takes the trio out on a high.
The album entered the US Album Top 10 in 1976, and would become a Trower fan favourite thereafter. All of his 70’s discography are very collectible, less so his 80’s material. Robin has released a ton of stuff so you would do well to cherry-pick according to taste.
Entire Album (Select Tracks)