Saturday, 16 February 2008

Focus - The Paris Theatre - London 1972

Having vivid, exciting, and first hand memories of the punk revolution, that was the mid 1970's, I remain surprised that the expression 'progressive rock' remains, as a use-able tag.

I suppose one of the saving graces of 'prog rock' from those heady late sixties and early seventies days, was the fact many of the performers were very capable musicians.

From a very English perspective, I never really thought of Focus as 'prog rockers', after all they were from Holland !

Those quirky alto flute riffs, accordion presence, 'different' guitar and drum solos, whistling, nonsensical vocals, falsetto singing, and yodeling, were a by product of being Dutch.

Focus remain to this day, and appear comfortable with the 'prog rock' tag, however I would venture to say, that however much my collection of old 'prog albums' grows, I cannot say for certain they belong there.

Rock they are, different they are, Dutch they remain, but their old music, has a timeless edge these days, that many first generation 'prog rockers' have sadly lost.

For your pleasure this is Focus - live at the Paris Theatre, London, England on the 20th July 1972.

Originally for a BBC FM broadcast, hosted by presenter Bob Harris ( of Old Grey Whistle Test fame), this is the whole session uncut.

1. Bob Harris Intro
2. Anonymous II
3. Brief Bob Harris Announcement
4. Focus I
5. Focus III
6. Answers Questions...
7. Focus II
8. Brief Bob Harris Announcement
9. Hokus Pokus

Band line up was:

Jan Akkerman - Guitars
Bert Ruiter - Bass, Backing Vocals
Pierre Van Der Linden - Drums
Thijs Van Leer - Keyboards, Flute, Vocals

Quality is very good (FM stereo or soundboard) and despite the odd 'Bob Harris' moment this is an outstanding performance, all the better for remaining unedited.

THE DOWNLOAD LINK FOR THIS FILE IS IN COMMENTS BELOW (COPY AND PASTE TO YOUR WEB BROWSER).

Some of the early Focus albums can be found on Cd HERE in the Beehive Candy Store along with Kraftwerk, Can, Earth and Fire, Gong and other great seventies European bands.

5 comments:

perfectradio@btinternet.com (MIKE) said...

DOWNLOAD LINK IS AS FOLLOWS:

http://www.mediafire.com/?alzguk5nwpm

THATS:

http://www.mediafire.com/?alzguk5nwpm

COPY/PASTE TO YOUR BROWSER DOWNLOAD ENJOY AND FEEDBACK ANY ISSUES

CHEERS

BEEHIVE VAN CANDY

Anonymous said...

Great Show! I can't agree with you about them not belonging to the 'prog rock'club however. Like their fellow Prog brothers King Crimson - who hates the 'Prog' tag by the way - I think they're the very IDEA of what a progressive rock band should be...always moving forward & trying new things. Thanks again!

-->D.Moose

Anonymous said...

what does it have to do with their being from holland?

Anonymous said...

I ALWAYS THOUGHT OF PROG ROCK AS A VERY ENGLISH THING (PLEASE DO NOT PROVIDE THE LIST OF BANDS THAT GIVE THE LIE TO THIS) IT IS JUST A 'CATCH ALL' TYPE STATEMENT.

GOLDEN EARRING, EARTH AND FIRE, ALONG WITH FOCUS HAVE ALWAYS REASSURED ME THAT 1970'S DUTCH POP / ROCK WAS ALIVE AND HEALTHY!

MIND YOU DO THE CLOGGIES STILL PLAY THAT AWFUL 'BARREL' MUSIC???

CHEERS

BEEHIVE VAN DYKE

Anonymous said...

always had a liking for ´em . thanks for providing such a great live recording !