Hybrid SACD Edition Mastered by Kevin Gray at Cohearent Audio and Featuring 4 Bonus Tracks!
Though their lifespan as a band was relatively short, Spirit created an impressive body of work in their time together. They were particularly productive in 1968, releasing two albums, scoring and appearing in the film Model Shop and touring relentlessly. Somehow, they found time in the midst of all this activity to record Clear, their third album. Hot on the heels of their wildly successful second effort, The Family That Plays Together and its hit single "I Got a Line on You," the band was under pressure to repeat that success. Feeling rushed into the sessions, they subsequently downplayed the album, believing they had not done their best work.
However, the stature of Clear has risen steadily over the years, to the point where many fans believe it is their ultimate creation. Because the hurried schedule left little time for writing, the band fell back on their jazz roots, guided by keyboardist John Locke on his three instrumental compositions. These selections allowed the band to stretch musically, adding new dimensions to their sound. Still, there was plenty on offer for fans of the group's rockier fare. Album opener "Dark Eyed Woman" was one the heaviest songs they ever recorded, complete with an iconic guitar solo from Randy California. Jay Ferguson's funky "Ground Hog" left no shadows but delivered a straight-ahead groove. And take a listen to Ferguson's "Cold Wind."
The album kicks back into rock mode with "I'm Truckin'," wherein the band downshifts into a Grateful Dead gear, chasing Casey Jones right off the track! Likewise, closing cut "New Dope in Town" is a Traffic-style jam that surely had Steve Winwood taking detailed notes. In addition to their contemporaries, subsequent generations of musicians have rediscovered and revered this essential recording.
• Numbered Hybrid SACD from Audio Fidelity
• Includes 4 bonus tracks
• Mastered by Kevin Gray at Cohearent Audio
• SACD authoring by Stephen Marsh at Marsh Mastering
• SACD layer
• CD layer