The Eleventh House - Level One. 1975 USA

The Eleventh House - Level One. 1975 Arista

CD reissue: 2012 Wounded Bird

Packaging details: We've mentioned this before, but Arista initially started as an American response to Virgin, and they signed many interesting progressive bands in their first couple of years of existence. And Larry Coryell saw the label as a good place to sign up his Eleventh House group, after a one year stint with Vanguard. But because of this label shift, "Level One" had been absent from the CD market. While the debut is common on CD, "Level One" had remained without a CD reissue until last year, when Wounded Bird finally came to the rescue. Wounded Bird is never the ideal choice to reissue a CD, but at least they are legit and straight from the masters. No fuss, no muss. And I gladly bought one as soon as it was released. As for the cover, I think we can lay claim that Coryell is the original "Leisure Suit Larry"! The last studio effort from The Eleventh House, "Aspect", only exists on CD as a rare Japanese import. I suspect Wounded Bird will eventually reissue that one as well, since it too was on Arista.

Notes: I personally feel that "Level One" is a half step up from the debut. All the edgy instrumental work has stayed in, but with stronger songwriting this go round. Coryell's fiery guitar work remains intact, and there's a few melodies to latch onto. A very good fusion album.

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