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Atlantic Bridge

Atlantic Bridge (Remastered and Expanded Version)

Review by Gary Hill

This is a new release of an album from 1970. In addition to the main album, it includes two bonus tracks from 1971. Other than the first bonus track, these pieces are all instrumental. This lands in the vicinity of jazz rock, which certainly fits under progressive rock. Some parts are full on prog. Other things are more fusion. All in all, this is quite an intriguing set that holds up well even today.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2017  Volume 5 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
MacArthur Park

What a ride this opener is. While it has the familiar melodies, this is a fusion workout of the highest order. At times it's in the neighborhood of hard rocking stuff. At other points it works toward freeform, chaotic jazz jamming. It's a very effective number no matter the label. It drops to a mellower movement that is more pure jazz, but even has some classical music built into it. The overall structure is creative and very proggy. It works through some shifts and changes as it evolves, eventually working out to fast paced jazz rock. It works back toward the main themes around the nine and a half minute mark (this is almost eleven minutes long).

Dreams (Dreams / Pax / Nepenthe )
Classical music and jazz seem to merge on this piece. There is some mellower, more freeform stuff later in the track.
Rosecrans Boulevard

Rock and jazz merge well on this. A more freeform jam around the minute and a half mark makes me think of early King Crimson in some ways. That gets fast paced and intense as it makes its way forward. Eventually make its way toward more mainstream stuff, this gets into some serious rock oriented sound.

Something

With a rather freeform and somewhat disonant mid-track section, this jazz rock treatment of the Beatles is very effective.

Dear Prudence

Turning again to the Beatles for inspiration, parts of this are distinctly jazz oriented. There are other parts, though, that make me think of early Electric Light Orchestra. It turns a bit more toward the strange sound of the equation in the last movement of the piece.

Childhood Room (Exit Waltz)

A bit more on the mellower and melodic end of the spectrum, this still manages to power up nicely.

Bonus Tracks
           
I Can't Lie to You

This has vocals (female). Some of the string sections here call to mind ELO, but overall this is more of a jazzy pop music with gospel overtones.

Hilary Dixon
The closer is a bit more of a pure fusion piece. It's classy.
 
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