GLENN PHILLIPS - 'AT THE RAINBOW'
(Shagrat ENT 021 12” vinyl album) PLEASE NOTE VINYL ONLY (Not available on CD)
**Update 8 November 2016** Check out the Reviews below !
Following on from 2015’s 40th anniversary deluxe edition of ‘Lost at Sea’, we are thrilled to announce the arrival of a new Glenn Phillips’ album, featuring never-before-released material.
Glenn’s fans already know what a unique and superbly creative player he is, one of the finest electric guitarists of his generation, and also know how in 1977 following a wave of acclaim from the underground media in the UK, Virgin Records signed Glenn to the label and issued his independently-released debut LP ‘Lost at Sea’ over here.
In October of that year they put out a sophomore set, ‘Swim in the Wind’ and Glenn was invited to come over as support act to psychedelic ‘guitar god’, Steve Hillage. With Bill Rea on bass, Doug Landsberg on drums and Dave Wilson on rhythm guitar and keyboards, the quartet (barely out of the rehearsal room) played a couple of warm up shows and then went out on the road playing cities across the country. I was lucky enough to catch them in Preston and Bradford and can attest to just how potent Glenn’s dazzling showmanship and guitar dexterity were as he and the band delivered electrifying lives sets that more than gave Mr Hillage a run for his money!! At Preston they even included a spine-tingling epic take on Ennio Morricone’s theme from ‘The Good, The Bad and The Ugly’ that I still recall as one of the most breath-taking moments in live music I have ever experienced.
Sadly the recording machine wasn’t running that night but by the time the tour arrived in London for the Rainbow Theatre show on 3rd November 1977, all was ready for their performance to be captured on tape and we are delighted to be releasing a large portion of their set from that Thursday night as part of this latest Shagrat release, ‘At the Rainbow’. From the opening notes of ‘The Flu’ (a cut from ‘Lost at Sea’), you can just tell the group are on demon form as they launch into a spectacular set of inspired and exhilarating instrumentals.
I have to admit that at the time I was a little disappointed with the somewhat muted tone of ‘Swim in the Wind’ LP but here, three of the best tracks from that album, ‘Sex Is So Strange’, ‘Druid Hill’ and ‘Lies’ really come into their own. They are rounded out by another fabulous number from ‘Lost at Sea’, one of my favourites, ‘Dogs’ and two cuts, ‘The Tube’ and ‘Phoebe’, from Glenn’s third studio he put out in 1980 in the US, the magnificent ‘Dark Lights’.
Arguably the outstanding cut here though is ‘Drive On’ that has never been released in any form on a Phillips record before. It was the first number the band played at the Rainbow but unfortunately, due to a problem with the mobile recording unit, it wasn’t recorded and instead we hope you won’t mind us closing this release with a superb demo version that was done back home in Atlanta a year later!
‘At the Rainbow’ features artwork by the great John Hurford and some insightful sleeve notes by Andy Childs who was at the show. Andy was one of the first people in the UK to sit up and take notice of Glenn’s mighty talent alongside the likes of Jumbo van Rennen and DJ John Peel. Andy is of course known as editor of ZigZag magazine and as founder of the truly wonderful Fat Angel zine. Andy put Glenn on the cover of issue 14. His lead article was one of the most powerful pieces of rock writing I have ever read. Like Nick Kent’s review of ‘Marquee Moon’ that same year, it got me so excited I just rushed out and bought the first copy of ‘Lost at Sea’ I could find – I have never regretted it!
‘At the Rainbow’ is released in an edition of just 500 VINYL copies and is available to buy now.
£14 plus P&P (£5 UK), (£7 Europe), (£12 USA and rest of world)