Sometimes you can judge a book by its cover. Live and Raw: 1970-1971 is indeed live and it is indeed raw. Very raw -- nose-bleeding, flesh-tearing, ear-achingly raw. No matter that the two live performances within were broadcast live on the BBC and should, therefore, exist in pristine quality somewhere on earth, this is the view from the other side of the dial, with a tiny mono microphone pressed up against a little transistor radio capturing the only known live recordings of the earliest classic Atomic Rooster lineups: 1970's John du Cann/Vincent Crane/Carl Palmer lineup and the 1971 incarnation that saw Paul Hammond replace Palmer. Four songs apiece testify to the monumental power of both lineups, as they used their allotted air time to their ultimate advantage. With half an hour of airtime at their disposal on each occasion, the trio unleashed gargantuan versions of "Friday the 13th," "Gershatser," and "VUG" and a positively demonic version of "Tomorrow Night." Indeed, if you can overlook the fuzzy sound and booming bass, the dirty distortion and the hazy waviness, Live and Raw steps ahead of even the band's first two albums as a lurid illustration of Atomic Rooster at the peak of its pecking powers.
John du Cann
1 Friday The 13th
5 Sleeping For Years
7 Tomorrow Night
8 I Can't Take No More
Tracks 1-4 Recorded 1970, Paris Theatre, London England;
Tracks 5-8 Recorded 1971, Paris Theatre, London, England.
Rip from CD 256@ (full artwork included)