In my series of early 70’s masterpieces we are usually swimming in prog rock waters, but this one is a quite different story. Some would claim it to be prog, as they would with any album they like from the 70’s, but to be honest the only thing very “prog” was the producer, former Crimson lyricist Peter Sinfield.
Roxy Music’s debut came out in 1972, a revolution to anyone following Rock Music at this point in history.
If you have to box this music it was Art/Glam Rock ala David Bowie, but then again more unfamiliar and strange than what Bowie had done at this point. Early pre-new wave ? …….forget it, fair to say Roxy was mostly just Roxy.
On top of that was the image of the 1950s-style pin-up cover, quite crazy compared to what you would expect from a rock band at the time, and then the outfits sending signals in almost any thinkable direction. Ferry in glamour suit’s sending thoughts in direction of Las Vegas, Eno with his strange omnisexual look and Andy Mackay the 1950s rock and roller, won’t see much of his “type” again until Saturday Night Fever.
But that makes Rock Music so special on this early record is something that could easily break down so many other albums, a complete lack of direction. It seems like they took numerous ideas, like a painter just blindly throwing paint on a canvas and some miracle happened to unify the pieces into something bigger.
Off course this would not be possible if the band was not composed of so many brilliant individuals, Bryan Ferry song writing and vocal is just great, Phil Manzanera, Andy Mackay and Brian Eno a dream cast to back him up, making a wonderful debut album and with it, music history.
Let’s finish with Bryan Ferry’s tribute to Humphrey Bogart:
Here’s looking at you kid – Hard to forget
Here’s looking at you kid – At least not yet
Your memory stays, it lingers ever – Will fade away never