To purchase any of the CD’s for £5  e.mail fraserp3@virginmedia.com

Summon the Heroes

The Kirkintilloch Band Conducted by Frank Renton featuring The Glasgow Phoenix Choir

1.Summon the Heroes (J. Williams arr. Ramsey) 5.30Summon the Heroes
2. Hymn to the Fallen (J. Williams arr. Smith) 5.55
3. Local Hero (Knopfler arr. Morrice) 3.37
4. Imperial March (J. Williams arr. Smith) 3.02
5. Born on the Fourth of July (J. Williams arr. Smith) 4.52
6. Rocky (Conti arr. Fernie) 3.01
7. Braveheart Suite (Horner arr. Duncan) 11.35
8. Soul Bosa Nova (Quincey Jones arr. Morrice) 2.49
9. Schindler’s List (J. Williams arr. Smith) 3.52
10. The Ludlows (Horner arr. Sykes) 6.17
11. The Gael (McLean and Jones arr. Duncan) 5.29

 

Liberty Fanfare

The Kirkintilloch Band Conducted by Frank Renton

1. Liberty Fanfare (J. Williams arr. Freah) 4.12Liberty Fanfare
2. Overture ‘The Magic Flute’ (Mozart arr. Renton) 6.54
3. You Are The Sunshine Of My Life (S.Wonder arr. Richards) 2.51
4. Blue Rono a la Turk D. Brubeck arr. Edwards) 4.24
5. Slavonic Rhapsody No.2 (Friedemann arr. Wright) 7.58
6. A Brown Bird Singing, (Wood arr. Renton) Soloist: Richard Bromley, 3.07
7. Carmen Suite, Bizet, 13.14
12. Apres Un Reve (Faure arr. Langford) Soloist: Allan Wardrope, 3.31
13. Heroic March (Fletcher) 5.24
14. Tonight (Bernstein arr. Drover) 3.05
15. Independance Day D. Arnold arr. Rockey) 6.45

 

Angels and Demons

The Kirkintilloch Band Conducted by Frank Renton

1. Overture to Tommy, 5.09Angels and Demons
2. Mission Impossible, 3.56
3. Angels, 4.36
4. Norwegian Wood, 3.23
5. Summertime, 3.06
6. Backseat Driver, 3.33
7. Surrender, 3.06
8. Minnie the Moocher, 3.37
9. Chelsea Bridge, 2.49
10. Eleanor Rigby, 3.51
11. One Day I’ll Fly Away, 2.46
12. Ruby Tuesday, 4.25
13. Bohemian Rhapsody, 6.08
14. Bridge Over Troubled Water, 4.55
15. Duel of the Fates, 4.28

Review of Angels and Demons

You can tell a great deal about a person by their CD collection. We are not talking about those strange individuals who log their plethora of recordings in chronological or alphabetical order, or even those who inhabit the even stranger world of placing them in genres, sub genres and even sub, sub genres. That is bordering on the type of unhealthy that requires professional help. 

No. A CD collection is a musical snapshot of a person’s life and as such it should reflect all that is good, bad and even slightly obscure about their personality. The standards of course should always be there: Mozart, Sinatra and The Beatles. Then comes those that reflect the true, or invented sense of intellect: Shostakovich, Duke Ellington and Pink Floyd to take three. Finally there are those that are meant to impress (usually towards the opposite sex): Rachmaninov, Brubeck and Coldplay come to mind.

There should however be a selection that should never be shared, even to a husband or wife or best mate. Like the hidden box found by the widow of John Peel, they are those absolute personal favourites that only the person who has chosen them should understand why they hold a secret place in their musical heart.  Motorhead Ace of Spades’ belongs in a box like that.

 

For those whose collection is made up of brass band recordings the same thing applies. Just about everyone has a Black Dyke test piece release tucked away in the IKEA Billy bookcase, whilst most will have a YBS collection and even a few from the easy listening Obrasso type stable of clap along a world hit type of thing. What it may be lacking is a Lemmy and the boys, thrash and burn, stick two fingers in the air and turn the volume up to 11 type of release. Not now it doesn’t.

‘Angels and Demons’ is your secret brass band Motorhead CD: Absolutely original, almost visceral in intensity, and utterly, completely, and totally 100% enjoyable. This is a mix of the good the bad and the ugly stirred in a pint glass and thrown down your throat like a pitcher of Red Bull and vodka with a chaser of blue smarties and a whiff of a felt tip pen.  

 

It should be listened to only at times in your life when you don’t care a jot what others think and when you feel in the mood to up the volume on your car stereo with the windows wound down and blast the public with a brass band in glorious technicolour sound. It puts a smile on your face that would make the Cheshire Cat frown in envy.

The 15 tracks have been put together, no, almost chucked together with an abandonment that is as thrilling as it is uneven, as brilliant as it is almost cringing. What works, works as well as you are likely to hear on any bit of brass band CD available; what doesn’t, still works and still makes you smile. You will listen to this release and replay tracks for no other reason than to raise your facial muscles in an upward direction.

The soloists are on quite excellent form: Steve Stewart is as mad as box of albino frogs covered in marmite, brilliantly bonkers on the trumpet, yet sublime on the flugel and soprano, whilst Allan Wardrope is simply outstanding on horn and David Prentice quite stunning on cornet.  Their solo contributions are of the very highest class.

Meanwhile Greg Barnes may not quite have the almost sleazy undertones of Cab Calloway on Minnie the Moocher’ but still makes it sound as grubby as Eastender’s Cat Slater dressed in her best leopard skin thong. Accompanying him, Steve Stewart sounds as if he has puffed a bit too long on the bong. He is on fabulous form.

 

As for the rest of the tracks, even the unevenness and occasional poor tuning on some doesn’t detract. It does rub in places, but it is like saying Lemmy, Filthy Phil and Fast Eddy spoil Ace of Spades’ by the lack of dynamic contrast.   

 

The inclusion of keyboards and electric guitars is a real plus; there is even the opening to one track that has those squib sounds only heard on the theme tunes of 1970’s soundtracks to television programmes such as The Professionals’ and a deep throated thumper of a starter on another that will reset your back bone.  The quieter items (and there are a few) are played with a neat sense of reserve, even if they don’t quite work as well as the injection of adrenaline stuff.

Finally, to top it all there is perhaps the best brass band rendition of Queen’sBohemian Rhapsody’ that you are ever likely to hear. Get to the Wayne’s World’ bit (you know, the one when they are in the little car, nerds in fantasy land, head banging as Freddie in his best pre moustachioed days gives way to the full throttle glam rock aria) and you can guarantee you too will be nodding like one of the little dogs in the back seat carshelf of a Ford Escort.

 

This has been one of the most enjoyable brass band releases for many, many years. Approach it in the wrong mood and you will hate it, but have a hard day at the office, get home, shut yourself off and turn the volume up to annoy the neighbours, and all your blues will fade away.

Frank Renton must be congratulated for his direction and inspiration on this one. He must be on a form of musical Viagra to last the pace, whilst there can be no higher praise available for the technical input of Brian Hillson and his team. The way in which he has balanced the disparate elements into a cohesive compact ensemble is at times astonishing and shows why he is rightly regarded as the very best engineer in the business. 

There is an unevenness to many of the tracks and some of the items do not work as would have been hoped, but that can all be forgiven for the bravery and sheer bloody mindedness to create a release that comes so far out of left field it hits you your lugholes like a left hook from Mike Tyson.

If you are looking for something to banish those post-Christmas blues, then buy this for yourself – and no one else – and keep it on your person to make sure nobody can get their grubby hands on it. It is guaranteed to work.

Iwan Fox.

 

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