George, Robin: Dangerous Music Live 85 / Crying Diamonds
Aside from a solo career that saw him breach the UK singles chart and be marketed as an 80's pop rocker, Robin George has a lengthy CV in terms of collaborations. David Byron, Magnum, Phil Lynott, Robert Plant and Roy Wood are just some of the artists he has worked with over the years and more recently he teamed up with Pete Way and Chris Slade in Damage Control. Angel Air have pulled together this timely 2 disc set from George's archives that features studio album Crying Diamonds and live release Dangerous Music from 1985 (where he is joined by a band that includes original Magnum drummer, the late Kex Gorin).
The majority of the material on Crying Diamonds highlights George's technical prowess and is high on melody and rounded out by an expansive production. Highlights are the 60's flavoured "Judy", lush ballad "Loving You" and an acoustic cover of Lynott's ode to Elvis, "Kings Call". After the slick gloss of his studio work, the live album from the mid-80's is an altogether more ragged affair as George leads the band through his minor hit singles "Spy", "No News Is Good News" and "Heartline" across what could well be an audience recording (and also has four bonus cuts added on to the end from live BBC radio performances). George never made the huge AOR breakthrough that he threatened to for a long period but has instead carved out a successful career as a producer, songwriter and sometime performer. This offers a value for money package and is well worth checking out.
Disc 1: Crying Diamonds
Learn The Dance
Thanks For The Memories
Face To Face
What Goes Around Comes Around
Things Have Got To Change
Cry From The Heart
Chance Of A Lifetime
Red For Danger
Disc 2: Dangerous Music Live '85
Shoot On Sight
No News Is Good News
In The Night
Go Down Fighting
Don't Turn Away
Heartline-from Tommy Vance's Friday Rock Show
Spy -from Tommy Vance's Friday Rock Show
Shoot On Sight-from BBC Live in Concert at the Paris Theatre
Go Down Fighting-from BBC Live in Concert at the Paris Theatre
Added: May 10th 2010
Reviewer: Dean Pedley
Related Link: Angel Air
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|George, Robin: Dangerous Music Live 85 / Crying Diamonds
Posted by Ryan Sparks, SoT Staff Writer on 2010-05-10 12:36:11
British vocalist / guitarist Robin George has quietly managed to scrape out a name for himself since first appearing on the scene back in the early 80's, and yet for all of his hard work he's never been able to climb into the upper echelons occupied by many of his high profile collaborators, which have included Robert Plant, John Wetton, Glenn Hughes and the late Phil Lynott to name just a few. I have to hand it to the guy because if anything he's proved to be a survivor time and time again and it's his unwavering determination that's got him this far. That being said his latest collection of archived material Crying Diamonds / Dangerous Music Live '85 which has just been released by Angel Air Records isn't going to be the record that finally helps get him over that hump.
One cannot dismiss George's talents as both a guitarist and a vocalist, and it doesn't take a genius to figure out that he possesses more than enough chops in both categories; not to mention he's also pretty damned skilled at crafting melodies and hooks as well. However, what is unfortunate is that for all of his talents it's hard to ignore the simple fact that the material here hasn't stood the test of time. The studio portion of this release definitely leans more towards what I'd call tepid sounding AOR pop, albeit with a bit of an edge, and save for a couple of interesting tracks originally penned for Robert Plant, "Machine" and "Red For Danger", the title track co-written with Lynott, and a half decent cover of Phil's "King's Call" there sadly isn't a lot to recommend here. The live concert fares only slightly better mainly because it at least allows George to inject a bit more balls into songs like "Dangerous Music", "History" and "Shout", which all feature some truly blazing guitar work.
Crying Diamonds / Dangerous Music Live '85 offers a pretty decent bang for your buck if you're a diehard George fan; however for everyone else it's hardly what I'd call an essential purchase.
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