Get this crazy baby off my head!


Bill Bruford's Earthworks


Bill Bruford's Earthworks - Stamping Ground - 1994 - Venture / Caroline

Bill Bruford was a member of Yes, Genesis, and of course King Crimson, the band he was with for over 25 years. Bill's percussive brilliance was a huge element in the band's great success. On "Stamping Ground" he shows more creative freedom in parts than some of his KC work. "Stamping Ground" contains some really innovative live, one-take cuts with no overdubs. One music critic said that "By letting in air and light and adding a little wit and wisdom, Earthworks produced a particularly British antidote to the increasingly grotesque jazz fusion scene. "Stamping Ground" has no electric guitar parts, and is not as "serious" as the fusion of artists like John McLaughlin, or Ian Carr. However the album is engrossing, very accessible, and enjoyable. Listen to Yes' great "Fragile" album, King Crimson's classic "Larks' Tongues in Aspic" album, and Genesis' "Three Sides Live" album. It is also worh listening to the "Anderson Bruford Wakeman Howe" album. Bill Bruford and Michiel Borstlap's "In Two Minds" is another great original improvised jazz album. Many people are put off jazz because of the sometimes false illusion that the genre is only for the intellectual elite. It is true that a lot of contemporary jazz and jazz fusion lacks any originality, and has little or no musical merit. However you don't have to be an "expert" on jazz to work that one out! There is good and bad elements in every musical genre, and as regards jazz, there are far too many pseudo-intellectuals who regard the genre as "over the heads" of the ordinary Joe Bloggs. Good music is good music, and whether it's Abba's "Dancing Queen", Franz Schubert's "The Trout Quintet", or Horace Silver's "Song For My Father", quality is to be found in almost every musical genre. Having said that, you will not find any Jedward, or M. Farre & P. Gasparini "Piano Piano" type music on this blog ! Apologies to connoisseurs of this type of "music" ! Find out a lot more about Earthworks @ HERE


1 Nerve - Bill Bruford , Django Bates , Iain Ballamy
2 Up North - Bill Bruford , Django Bates , Iain Ballamy
3 A Stone's Throw - Bill Bruford , Django Bates , Iain Ballamy
4 Pilgrim's Way - Bill Bruford , Iain Ballamy
5 Emotional Shirt - Django Bates
6 It Needn't End In Tears - Iain Ballamy
7 All Heaven Broke Loose (includes 7a "Psalm" by Bill Bruford , Iain Ballamy, and 7b "Old Song" by Django Bates , Iain Ballamy
8 Candles Still Flicker In Romania's Dark - Django Bates
9 Bridge Of Inhibition - Bill Bruford , Django Bates , Iain Ballamy

Tracks 1, 4 to 8 were recorded live at the Bottom Line, New York, on March 14th & 15th, 1992, and tracks 2 and 3 at the Nightstage, Boston, MA, on March 18th, 1992. Track 9 was recorded at The Junction, Cambridge, England, on May 22nd, 1992.

CD also available with bonus track, "Hotel Splendour", and as a 2 X CD Edition, with "Hotel Splendour" , and 7 other tracks


Bass [Acoustic & Electric] - Tim Harries
Keyboards, e-flat peck horn, Trumpet - Django Bates
Drums [Electronic, Acoustic & Chordal] - Bill Bruford
Saxophone - Iain Ballamy


Even by the standards set on the previous three studio CDs by his band Earthworks, drummer Bill Bruford hits on all cylinders on the live 1994 release Stamping Ground. The music is practically uncategorizable, as Bruford and bassist Tim Harries set a muscular pace for saxophonist Iain Ballamy and keyboardist/horn player Django Bates on the serpentining opener "Nerve." "Up North" slows the pace and showcases Ballamy's melodic sensibilities, then the lengthier workouts begin. "A Stone's Throw" features a duet intro between Ballamy and Bruford (on percussion), then the saxophonist sways over the acoustic bassline of Harries and the embellishments of Bruford. The drummer toyed with the primary use of electronic drums on Earthworks releases in the 1980s, but reverts to a more acoustic format here -- yet the intro to the nine-minute "Pilgrim's Way" still shows the melodic possibilities of Bruford's creative electric "chordal drums." Bates' "Emotional Shirt" blends classical sensibilities with a shuffling jazz/fusion rhythmic pattern; Ballamy's "It Needn't End in Tears" is a stately ballad spotlighting the saxophonist's lyrical playing, and "All Heaven Broke Loose" lives up to its title with a sensitive intro and explosive buildup. Bates' brooding, seven-minute "Candles Still Flicker in Romania's Dark" is the official finale, but its subtitled, 11-minute part two ("Bridge of Inhibition") provides the exhilarating climax. Bruford's chordal patterns sound practically symphonic amid this epic's starts and stops -- further proof of the originality of one of the most musical drummers of all-time. Like all great live releases, Stamping Ground makes you wish you had been there. © Bill Meredith, All Music Guide © 2010 Answers Corporation http://www.answers.com/topic/stamping-ground-bill-bruford-s-earthworks-live



Bill Bruford's career is like his drumming sound — inimitable. Known for his ringing metal snare drum, crisp cymbal work, and knack for complex time signatures, a young Bruford came to prominence in the late '60s with Yes. The drummer completed his British art rock trilogy by briefly joining Genesis in the 1970s and spending a quarter-century with King Crimson through the late '90s. In between King Crimson dates, Bruford led a dazzling self-titled jazz fusion solo band from 1978 to 1980 that featured guitarist Allan Holdsworth, bassist Jeff Berlin, and keyboardist Dave Stewart. And even as he leads his visionary jazz band, Bill Bruford's Earthworks, he maintains a career as a session drummer (with artists like guitarists Al DiMeola and David Torn, bassist Jamaaladeen Tacuma, and keyboardist Patrick Moraz). During one of King Crimson leader Robert Fripp's several lineup-shifting hiatuses in Bruford's 1972-1997 tenure, the drummer formed his self-titled Earthworks band in 1986. On its 1987 Earthworks debut album, Bruford often used electric Simmons drums to contrast acoustic horn players Iain Ballamy and Django Bates and upright bassist Mick Hutton, achieving the opposite of the standard lineup where drums are the only acoustic instrument. Subsequent releases like 1989's Dig? and 1991's All Heaven Broke Loose continued this forward-thinking trend, blending acoustic and electric instrumentation and jazz ideology with classical undertones. But by 1993's live Stamping Ground, Bruford had replaced Hutton with electric/acoustic bassist Tim Harries and was using keyboard-pitched electric chordal drums, the combined result being a more muscular and fuller sound. Bruford continued recording and touring with King Crimson through 1997, releasing the Earthworks compilation Heavenly Bodies just as he quit the venerable rock band with which he'd had his longest tenure. It would prove to be a transitional year, as Bruford recorded a jazz chamber trio solo CD called If Summer Had Its Ghosts with legendary jazz figures Ralph Towner (guitar/piano) and Eddie Gomez (acoustic bass). Between explorative electric recordings with bassist and fellow King Crimson alum Tony Levin, Bruford kept Earthworks closer to the chamber jazz mode on the 1999 CD A Part and Yet Apart. Likewise, the lineup of Bruford, saxophonist Patrick Clahar, pianist Steve Hamilton, and bassist Mark Hodgson started the new millennium with the 2001 CD The Sound of Surprise, an outstanding blend of jazz tradition and forward-thinking transition. © Bill Meredith © 2010 Rovi Corporation. All Rights Reserved http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=11:aifixqw5ldde~T1


In 1986, prog rock percussion legend Bill Bruford formed Bill Bruford's Earthworks as a venue to work on his true passion, jazz. For the formation, he recruited Django Bates, Mick Hutton, and Iain Ballamy. The group quickly set out to release their first album, simply called Earthworks. Their second album, Dig?, was released in 1989. They followed that one with All Heaven Broke Loose in 1993. Next, the group continued in rapid-fire fashion with Stamping Ground, their first live release. Bruford's attention was diverted from the band for a couple of years, concentrating on King Crimson. When he returned his focus to his own band the result was a best-of compilation with the addition of unreleased live recordings. The album, called Heavenly Bodies, was released in 1997. By the time they released 1999's A Part & Yet Apart, the group's lineup was composed of Bruford, Steve Hamilton, Patrick Clahar, and Mark Hodgson. This lineup was also responsible for The Sound of Surprise (2001), Footloose and Fancy Free (a live album released in 2002), and Footloose in New York City (a live DVD released 2002). Tim Garland has since replaced Clahar. © Gary Hill © 2010 Rovi Corporation. All Rights Reserved http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=11:0zfuxq90ld6e~T1


A.O.O.F.C said...


p/w aoofc

Anonymous said...

Hi A.O.O.F.C.!

Back at the train depot...finally!

Thought I'll start out with Bill Bruford's Earthworks, a great drummer who's work I've always enjoyed. I have not the chance to see him on his solo tours (and what I've heard, it's too late--he's quit touring)but I did catch him with King Crimson back in the 80's and his powerful drumming for that band left you stunned, believe me!

He seems to enjoy Jazz more but whatever he does, he's one of my favorite drummers, bar none.

Thanks again, friend!!


A.O.O.F.C said...

Hey, D.Moose. I've answered yor comments in reverse! Steve Gadd, Bill Bruford, Bernard Purdie. Three of the greatest drummers, ever. OK.I'm at the depot now. Where are you? I thought we might have a few sarsparillas, and talk about album covers! Wahaayy! Thanks a million, friend. I hope your health keeps up. Peace, and I look forward to hearing from you very soon....P