Relayer - s/t. 1979 USA

Relayer were a band from Houston*, who managed to release one album before disappearing into the mists of time. With a name like Relayer and a colorful rainbow fantasy cover, one can expect 'Gates of Delirium Part Deux' eh Oui? Non. Because they are from my home state of Texas, this private press wasn't too obscure up north here in DFW and I first heard this album some 25 years ago and quickly dismissed it as rubbish. During that time, I've gained an entirely new appreciation for the private press American music landscape of the 1970s that I've documented to death here on these very pages. And Relayer fits smack dab in the middle of that sound.

The album itself is interesting, because it almost plays like an archival CD issue, verse a real time released LP. And that's because they front loaded all the progressive rock tracks on Side 1. So the first side rounds up the usual suspects like Yes and ELP, with a hint of Styx's Grand Illusion, for a very satisfying listen. Side 2 treads in commercial waters, more towards Styx's Pieces of Eight, with a bit of loungy fusion to boot. Overall, I'd weight it 55% AOR and 45% prog rock, so for those who have no tolerance for late 70s American FM radio rock, I'd steer clear. This is a very good album for the style, and one that I'm glad to have bought for the collection.

*Though the band named one song with nearby Victoria in the name, they are documented as being from Houston (internet search confirms), and that's what I recall from the early 90s as well.

Personal collection
LP: 1979 HSR

Supposedly this album was reissued by the band on CD. It has all the earmarks of a CD-R homemade type release. I could be wrong, as I haven't seen it, but just based on what I've read. Not listed in Discogs as I type this either. So it goes onto the CDRWL.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Hadal Sherpa - s/t. 2017 Finland

Every once in awhile I'll receive a recommendation on a new album to try. But it's very rare for me to receive 3 strong recs from ...