Sunday, November 4, 2012

The Magical World of The Shadows and Cliff Richard (on vinyl of course)

"Listen To Cliff" is Cliff Richard's fourth solo album.  16 songs.  8 with the Shadows and the other 8 with a full orchestra.  Overall I think this maybe Cliff's best album.  It showed the present (with The Shadows) and the future.  Although the album was recorded in 1961, Cliff was looking ahead and thinking about painting on a bigger canvas.  Most people would probably feel that he should have stayed with The Shadows, but this young man at that time saw a world to conquer (well, at least the UK) and what we have here is a mixture of standards and original Shadows material.  They all work, they are all fantastic.   And the album cover I feel conveys "Listen To Cliff" - its dreamy, a tad surreal, and there is some killer guitar solos by Hank Melvin, which of course gives the aural dream, but again, Cliff's vision is what makes this album unique.  Listening to this album is like drinking a whole bottle of red wine in one sitting.

What we have here is The Shadows first album and the first Shadows album in Italy that is recently re-issued by the Doxy Records, who do a series of amazing releases.   The beauty of The Shadows is the splendid and clear headed arrangements that allows one to dream.  The Shadows for me, work right between falling asleep and being asleep.  The images that their sound conveys to the ears ia world of remarkable choreography and beautiful guitar sounds.  Hank Marvin's number one fan is Neil Young, and when Young lets it rip on the electric guitar I think he's thinking of Hank.  Actually for any British guitarist circ 1960's owns their aesthetic to Hank Marvin and The Shadows.   For those who want an introduction, do get "Meeting With The Shadows."  The vinyl is in mono, and the CD that comes with it is in stereo and both, are fantastic.  If you love it like I love it, then surely track down a vinyl version of The Shadows. You'll be sharing some songs with the other, but who cares.  Each album is an album by itself.  All hail to the beauty of The Shadows!

Cliff and The Shadows "Move It"

The Shadows doing "Wonderful Land"

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