Drum legend and Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee Bill Bruford, best known for his drumming and percussive work with Yes, King Crimson, Genesis, and a prolific solo career, is releasing the definitive box set Bruford 1977-1980: Seems Like a Lifetime Ago on Winterfold Records on October 28, 2017. Pre-orders are now being taken for the limited edition 8-disc set, which features unreleased, remixed, or remastered material, plus a signed certificate.
And, most significantly for we here at HRAC, Bruford 1977-1980 also includes two hi-res 5.1 mixes done by Jakko Jackszyk of the current incarnation of King Crimson (more on them in a bit).
Bruford reflects on embarking on a solo career and forming Bruford: “I wanted to play drums in a certain way, and if you want to hear them played in that way, you’ve got to write the song. You’ve got to control the audio environment in which your drums are going to be heard, and once you’re doing that, you’re into a solo career. Looking back, the band dispatched these tricky little compositions with a smile on its face; with brio, vigor, and only a handful of wrong notes. The band was over-caffeinated — short on subtlety, but long on the sort of majestic, stately themes with antecedents in progressive rock that set it apart from contemporaneous American outfits. We were a rock group with a jazz sensibility, rather than a jazz group with rock leanings.”
Bruford 1977-1980: Seems Like a Lifetime Ago is presented in a 12-inch box, complete with 16-page color booklet and a signed, numbered certificate of authentication. Four gatefold sleeves contain two discs each, as follows:
Disc 1 DVD: Feels Good to Me: 5.1 surround sound mix and original 1978 mix remastered
Disc 2 CD: Feels Good to Me: 2017 Jakko Jakszyk remix from original master tapes
Disc 3 DVD: One of a Kind: 5.1 surround sound mix and original 1979 mix remastered plus additional audio
Disc 4 CD: One of a Kind: 2017 Jakko Jakszyk remix from original master tapes
Disc 5 CD: Gradually Going Tornado: remastered
Disc 6 CD: The Bruford Tapes: remastered with bonus track
Disc 7 CD: Live at the Venue: previously unreleased: recorded London 1980
Disc 8 CD: The 4th Album Rehearsal Sessions: previously unreleased: eighteen sketches of new material recorded 1980
The collection also includes a 16-page, 12-inch booklet with a Sid Smith essay; new interviews with producers, engineers, bandmembers, eyewitnesses, and others; previously unseen archive visual material; and the complete band date sheet with contemporary critical reaction. Also two black and white 10×8-inch band photos, one A3 size color poster accompanying Live at the Venue, and one signed, numbered certificate of authentication.
The box set is produced by Bill Bruford and features 2017 remastered versions of the albums Feels Good to Me (1978), One of a Kind (1979), The Bruford Tapes (1979), and Gradually Going Tornado (1980). The box also includes the previously unreleased Live at the Venue (from 1980) and the highly sought after 4th Album Rehearsal Sessions (also from 1980).
Bruford 1977-1980: Seems Like a Lifetime Ago showcases the talents of Bill Bruford, Dave Stewart, the late Allan Holdsworth (whom the album is dedicated to), Jeff Berlin, and The “Unknown” John Clark.
Says Dave Stewart (Hatfield and the North, Egg), “The great thing about Bill is that he’s not just a drummer. He doesn’t just think about what he’s playing… he’s thinking about the whole picture, thinking about soundscapes, what the guitar is doing, the arrangement, the keyboard sounds, and so on. He’s got this composer/arranger mentality which was there from the beginning, and he evolved through the life of the band. He’s a deep-thinking musician, and it was great working with him for that very reason.”
Jeff Berlin adds, “I learned a lot from Bill. Bill was the person who opened more doors for me not only with regards to reputation… he opened up doors to me about sound, presentation, interplay, the elements of a performance, the elements of group interaction. I think it was one of the happiest and musically productive periods I ever had in my career. I was working with fine human beings and with fine musicians.”
Feels Good to Me and One of a Kind are available on both remastered CD and DVD-A, the latter featuring the aforementioned 2017 5.1 mixes by Jakko Jakszyk. Says King Crimson’s Jakszyk on remixing both Feels Good to Me and One of a Kind into surround sound, “I use the original mixes as a guide, and Bill handed over the whole 5.1 remix to me. It becomes an immersive experience. I’m not talking about flying instruments around 360 degrees. While that’s possible, it’s also ridiculous… it’s all about sculpting the sound into three dimensions. The new versions of these albums sound much bigger, fatter, and warmer, and whilst I’m keen to take credit for that, the reality is that this is Dave Stewart, Jeff Berlin, Bill Bruford, and Allan Holdsworth, and it’s not just about their playing abilities; it’s that they’ve got their sound together and what you need to do is replicate that and not mess about with it.”
PRE-ORDER DETAILS & SOCIALS
Bill Bruford’s official website: http://www.billbruford.com/
BRUFORD BOX SET VIDEO DISCUSSIONS