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Friday, September 7, 2012

Jack Hammond, USA

Jack Hammond - Open the Doors. 1980 private.
The Jack Hammond Group - A Fatal Beauty. 1982 Fatal Beauty Records.

I bought the double LP of "A Fatal Beauty" on ebay back in May, and have finally gotten around to posting about it here - along with his debut. If you're interested in the vinyl for both of these albums, my old friend Paul Major (sonray66) is selling Michael Piper's (The Wild Places / Ace of Wands) former stock on ebay for reasonable prices - and that's where I picked up my copies of these albums. He has the first one up for sale now.

Chicago based guitarist Jack Hammond debuted with "Open the Doors", an eclectic album with an anachronistic 1960s blues/psychedelic feel on some tracks, which is highly unusual for 1980. As well he seems to have adopted, or been a disciple of, John Fahey's American Primitive style of country blues finger picking. His second album expounded upon his rock aesthetic for a very enjoyable double album.

Slightly renaming the band to The Jack Hammond Group, he continues with a more inventive fusion effort than prior. On the double LP "A Fatal Beauty", the album opens with a fantastic sequence of tracks, lead by Hammond's impressive guitar work, and which is ultimately based in progressive rock, including a side long epic as found on Side 2 (of 4). Side 3 finds the group experimenting with many disparate styles (for example - classical, blues and funk). Then they close strong on the final cut with the additional of horns. A solid album throughout, and a great find for US private press seekers. The cover is also quite suitably creepy.

Priority: 3

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I was a student of Jack decades ago at Perry's Music in Villa Park, IL. A Fatal Beauty was one of the last LPs I saved due to the fact that he signed and numbered it for me (16 as I recall.) not sure if it survived my recent move to NY, alas. great album and great to see that others enjoy it.