Wednesday, July 5, 2023

England - England (1976 uk, good strong prog rock)

England is a band formed by the band's guitarist, Olly Alcock in 1971, accompanied by bandmates Mike Kidson, soon to be Genesis' road manager on drums, and John Waite, who had a hit single called "Missing You" in 1984 on bass. The band played festivals and gigs for every record company there was, but had no success. In 1973, Kidson left England to become Genesis' road manager and Waite left to form his own band, leaving Alcock band-less. 

Around 1974, Alcock had got his band up and running, with Ben Eggleston on bass and John Clark on drums, and Paul Rossiter on saxophone. The band had played many gigs, but has yet to have been signed, resulting in drummer John Clark's resignation. It is now 1976, and the band has found a record deal, with Phil Cook on drums and Paul Rossiter as a mere guest saxophone player. 

Their debut album, "England", was released in 1976, but has not recieved much publicity and success.   In 1978, with punk taking over, the band has broken up and was never to be heard from again. Now, Alcock has his own band called The Olly Alcock Band, but the details of Cook and Eggleston remain hidden.   The band is heavily influenced by bands like Led Zeppelin, Rush, and Wishbone Ash, and their main style is blues-oriented prog, similar to the sounds of Nektar.

Despite its relatively late vintage, it is an excellent early 70s-style heavy rock set with an ability to compose some memorable songs. And an incredible scarce and sought-after album too.
1. The Osprey - 4:09
2. Keswick Line - 5:22
3. Out Of Town - 4:15
4. Beauty And The Beast - 5:48
5. Paradise Lost - 4:48
6. How Does It Feel? - 3:59
7. Nature Ruled - 4:47
8. The Fleece (Rachelle Deguara, Olly Alcock) - 3:45
9. Life And Soul - 3:10
All compositions by Olly Alcock excpet where stated

Phil Cook - Drums
Ben Eggleston - Bass, Vocals
Olly Alcock - Vocals, Guitar
Paul Rossiter - Tenor, Soprano Saxophones