Robin Trower - guitar, vocals; Jimmy Dewar - bass, vocals; Bill Lordan - drums
It had been four years since Robin Trower's solo debut on Chrysalis Records in 1972, and several years since he had released his breakthrough record, Bridge of Sighs. This short set from his '76 U.S. tour is one of several nights recorded for the King Biscuit Flower Hour. Trower had graduated to slightly more complicated material and less blues-based songs to ones that were more progressive in nature and more deliberate in their "dream-like" guitar style.
"Lady Love" and "I Can't Wait Much Longer" were more in line with Trower's typical sound but it was the comical "Too Rolling Stoned" that would score the most FM airplay. "Little Bit Of Sympathy" and "Althea," although neither big radio hits for Trower, make for some good listening nonetheless, and the act is a great vehicle for singer/bassist James Dewar's brilliant voice.
Although he never attained the notoriety of his contemporaries such as Eric Clapton, Alvin Lee, and David Gilmour, Trower is unquestionably one of the best blues-based guitarists to emerge from the U.K. He first was noticed internationally as the guitarist for prog-rock pioneers Procol Harum. Though he rarely got credit for it, he was instrumental in developing that band's haunting, distant sound. He remained with Procol Harum for five years, leaving after touring for the band's greatest album, Broken Barricades. After witnessing a Jimi Hendrix performance in Europe in 1970 (which Procol opened for), Trower was transfixed and transformed. Upon the great guitarist's untimely death, he adopted the heavily flanged but powerfully piercing lead guitar-style, first introduced on Hendrix's Electric Ladyland album.
Although his debut album in 1972 got some attention, it was not until he released 1973's blistering Bridge of Sighs that Robin Trower became a fixture on FM playlists in both the U.S. and Europe. He formed an effective power trio with James Dewar on vocals and bass; and Reg Isadore on drums, later replaced by Bill Lordan, who played drums in the final line-up of Sly & the Family Stone.