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FM Live
Climax Blues Band

Sire SAS-2-7411
Released: December 1973
Chart Peak: #107
Weeks Charted: 30

John CuffelyDerek HoltPete HaycockColin CooperIf you were looking for a band with substantial blues roots, technically excellent playing both individually and collectively, and a live excitement that grabs and never lets go, you couldn't do much better than the Climax Blues Band. This English quartet has been around in roughly the same form ever since Rod Stewart and Long John Baldry were obscure blues singers; and FM Live is a fine sampler of their live act, using uptempo blues-rockers to establish a primal intensity sustained throughout a spirited set. Colin Cooper's booming baritone vocals and inventive sax blowing (he plays lines like pre-Thirties Chicago blues guitarists) are spectacularly well-blended with Pete Haycock's tastefully flashy guitar, all of which is intertwined around the urgent poundings of a highly sympathetic rhythm section. The result is a lengthy but not excessive show that's highly enjoyable -- the product of a tight, talented professional unit.

- Gordon Fletcher, Rolling Stone, 4/11/74.

Climax Blues Band - FM Live
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Good time rock, spiced with a bluesy feeling, is the happy calling card of this band heard in a concert in New York. Its vocal blend is basically in the midrange with simple guitar breaks and drums that don't drive you nuts. "All The Time In The World" and "Flight" showcase the fine musicianship of Pete Haycock on guitar, Colin Cooper on sax and guitar, Derek Holt on bass and John Cuffely on drums. The music tends to run a little fuzzy ("Goin' To New York"), but it's livable.

- Billboard, 1974.

A truly superior double LP set from one of England's more interesting exponents of blues. Combining straight blues-rock with some belligerent jazz bastardizations, this exciting foursome gets a lot of mileage out of their musical idiom. With anchoring bass and cannon volley drum rhythms laying a firm foundation, Climax lets loose some frenzied reed work and the hottest, nastiest guitar work this side of early Clapton and Page. Although not a perfect album, FM/Live comes close enough to please the beejeebers outta ya.

- Ed Naha, Circus, 1/74.

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