01 June 2015 (released)
07 August 2015
Spring had all the accoutrements to have become one of the behemoths of progressive music – great songs, excellent musicians, relentless gigging to get their name ‘out there’ and even a slice of luck in breaking down in the same town that housed Rockfield studios and being rescued by the studios founder.
Somehow though, it didn’t happen and they have been relegated to a stub in Wikipedia and this album (plus some superb additional cuts included here).
Listening to the album their use of mellotron is as it should be – a backing instrument, used to add a mood and texture – and it is offset by Paul Moran’s light but passionate vocals and Kips Brown’s organ with Ray Martinez guitars almost relegated to backing instruments. Adrian Molony (bass) and Pick Withers (drums) offer a really sensitive rhythm section so that from the beginning of the first track ‘The Prisoner (Eight by Ten)’ the music is drawing you along and telling the story as much as the lyrics do.
‘Grail’ is a lovely, sun dappled, love song bringing to mind laying out in an orchard, musing on the lady love and drifting softly into slumber. Another side to the band and one that would have made a great single.
‘Golden Fleece’ is probably my favourite track, full of all the elements that make Spring rather special but allowing the band to stretch out and deliver a strong jam that shows all of their skills.
A lovely band and sadly overlooked but this reissue may do a lot to help that.
The package includes all the original tracks recorded at Rockfield and the remastering is pretty well faultless.
Rather more than just a quirky reissue, this shows that the band had some real talent.