Review: Farther On Up The Road: The Chrysalis Years (1977-1983) – Robin Trower
Following the previously released 3CD album collection A Tale Untold: The Chrysalis Years (1973-1976), which contain some of the best known Robin Trower classics albums for fans, Chrysalis issues a continuance of the catalogue collection with Farther On Up The Road: The Chrysalis Years (1977-1983). Just as the first collected set offered new remastering, and a few bonus tracks, so does Farther On Up the Road.
When Robin Trower came into his own with Twice Removed From Yesterday (1973), featuring the inimitable Jame Dewar on vocals and bass, there awaited a legion of dedicated fans, many of who would insist that Trower, as a guitar player, knew no equal. While that is a subject open to debate among fans of super-guitarists, there is no denying the greatness of Trower. You hear all of that on each album that Trower recorded.
Farther On Up the Road brings together In City Dreams (1977), Caravan To Midnight (1978), Victims Of the Fury (1979), B.L.T. (1981), Truce (1981), and Back It Up (1983). After In City Dreams, each successive Trower release was noticed less and less although there was no musical reason to ignore the bluesy richness of these albums other than that times were changing. But even the band was changing in small ways. B.L.T., and Truce, both featured Jack Bruce of Cream fame. Back It Up found Dewar reunited into the Trower fold, where he belonged all along.
Farther On Up The Road is a fan’s set. With excellent remastering by Peter Mew (Abbey Road Studios), and two bonus tracks (a 7″ edit of “Bluebird” from In City Dreams, and the single-only b-side song, “One In A Million” from Victims Of The Fury sessions), this budget gathering of the Trower catalogue (with A Tale Untold) serves a suitable purpose. There is no one quite like Robin Trower, and there never will be. The two sets that cover the two periods of Trower’s “solo” career are discoveries waiting to happen for young searchers of greatness (to call the Trower albums a stage for Robin alone would be a travesty as it was a fully formed band with it’s own unmatched uniqueness of musicians). This 3CD set offers a small booklet, with a short three-page essay, complete cover art of the six represented albums, photos, and full credits of each album.
Trower’s albums were wonderful issues, every last one of them. You cannot go wrong with the newly remastered music of Robin Trower found here. There’s a lot of damn fine magic found here.
Release Date: March 13, 2012
— Matt Rowe