As I started working in a record store in the summer of 1976, I remember clearly the first time I ever heard of Brand X. My manager was a big Genesis fan, so naturally, he was following any news he could about Genesis, after the split with Peter Gabriel.
I think I behaved like many Genesis fans – I lost interest when Gabriel left. I did go see Mr. Gabriel at The Roxy in Los Angeles in 1977 – but his guitarist was Robert Fripp, who I had never seen up close. Yes, he sat on a stool at the side of the stage and was even introduced as “Dusty Rhodes” (or thereabouts).
If I didn’t care all that much about Genesis after Peter Gabriel left, I really gave up when guitarist Steve Hackett left. I didn’t even pay attention any longer. So, when Brand X made an LP – I knew about it, but…didn’t really care. Phil Collins was initially the drummer for Brand X, hence the big time Genesis connection – well before his solo career.
Well, time has a way of bending / distorting the mirror we submerge in the murky waters of our memories. I found a few good LP’s / 12” singles by Brand X, and it sounds like pretty good electric British jazz to me. Now I pick up the CD’s, whenever I can find them inexpensively.
CD DO THEY HURT? CHARISMA UK CASCD 1151 1980 7 TRKS
CD LIVESTOCK CAROLINE US CAROL 1388.2 1977 5 TRKS Live
LP LIVESTOCK CHARISMA UK CLASS 5 1977 5 TRKS Live
CD MACROCOSM – INTRODUCING… (Collection) VIRGIN UK 90978.2 2003 13 TRK Collection
CD MASQUES CHARISMA UK CASCD 1138 1978 7 TRKS
LP MOROCCAN ROLL CHARISMA UK CAS 1126 1977 9 TRKS
LP PRODUCT CHARISMA UK CHC 3 1979 9 TRKS re-issue
12″ SOHO CHARISMA UK CB 340-12 1979 3 TRKS with pic sleeve
CD UNORTHODOX BEHAVIOUR CAROLINE US CAROL 1387.2 1976 7 TRKS
LP UNORTHODOX BEHAVIOUR CHARISMA UK CAS 1117 1976 7 TRKS
I have wise, old friends to tell me if there’s any other Brand X titles I should be on the lookout for. I confess to having a hard time thinking that Genesis fans would really gravitate towards this kind of music – essentially ‘British electric fusion jazz’ (British modern / late 70’s jazz-rock played on electric instruments).
Because most of these records are new-to-me, I haven’t played them enough to have any clear favorites as yet. The 12” single “Soho” sounded pretty good, actually. Looks to me that I should try and find an inexpensive CD for “Moroccan Roll” – that’ll probably be “in stock” at Rhino Claremont, which I will visit when I go to the Claremont swap meet in February.