Colin Cooper - sax; Derek Holt - bass; Peter Haycock - vocals, guitar; Peter Fillual - keyboards, vocals; John Cuffley - drums
Formed in the late 1960s in England, this blues-rock band was originally called the Climax Chicago Blues Band because of a keen interest in the authentic blues records coming out of the windy city. Led by saxophonist Colin Cooper, the group initially had a sound not unlike the original Fleetwood Mac when guitarist Peter Green was at the helm. Ironically, both the Climax Chicago Blues Band and Fleetwood Mac released blues rock albums in 1969 with very similar titles: Play On (CBB) and Then Play On (FM).
This recording, which features only Cooper, guitarist Peter Haycock and bassist Derek Holt from the original lineup, was recorded in 1976 in the band's native England. They had not performed there in Guilford in over five years, so it was like a homecoming when this recording was captured for the King Biscuit Flower Hour Radio Concert Series. The band had already shortened its name to the Climax Blues Band in 1972, and moved in a more rock direction with the success of 1972's Rich Man album, and a double live LP called FM Live.
The group had achieved gold album status in the U.S. and was starting to fill small and medium-sized theaters. In 1976, when they made this recording, they were promoting Gold Plated (a reference to the recent albums that had gone gold). They had their first bona fide radio hit, "Couldn't Get It Right," which is represented here.
By the mid-1970s Climax was hardly a blues band. They had moved in a decidedly more pop and rock direction, and had seen success because of it. Shortly after the success of Gold Plated, the punk and new wave scenes started to emerge, and marginal rock bands like Climax had a tough time competing. They faded out in the 1980s, but have reunited on occasion and recorded new studio albums as late as the mid-1990s. Highlights of this show include "Together And Free," "Couldn't Get It Right," "Going To New York," and a rocking closer of "All The Time In The World," which slides into their cover of the Beatles' "Get Back."