Bruford
One of a Kind


4.5
superb

Review

by e210013 USER (107 Reviews)
December 11th, 2018 | 25 replies


Release Date: 1979 | Tracklist

Review Summary: It’s the most consistent of Bruford's fusion albums. This is one of those albums that is such a pleasure to listen.

“One Of A Kind” is the second solo studio album of Bill Bruford and was released in 1979. The line up on the album is Bill Bruford, Allan Holdsworth, Dave Stewart and Jeff Berlin.


Bill Bruford is one of the most famous and recognized drummers of the prog rock world and he was one of the founder members of Yes, a member of King Crimson and a founder member of UK. Beyond that, he participated in several musical projects and performed live with Genesis, returned to King Crimson and Yes, performed with his ex-colleagues of Yes, Jon Anderson, Rick Wakeman, Steve Howe and Patrick Moraz and also with the American band Pavlov’s Dog. These are only some of his most important musical contributions to the universe of the progressive rock music.

So in fact, Bill Bruford was one of the founder artists of the progressive rock music and he bought new ideas to rock, jazz and the orchestral techniques. According to Digital Dream Door, Bruford is the seventh greatest rock drummer of all time. Bruford is also considered as one of the most influential drummers ever existed and his technique and influence are considered at the same level such as Neil Pearl of Rush, John Bonham of Led Zeppelin, Keith Moon of The Who, Carl Palmer of Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Ian Paice of Deep Purple, or in our days, Mike Portnoy of Dream Theater.

“One Of A Kind” was released one year later, after Bruford have participated in the release of U.K., the eponymous debut studio album of U.K., the super-group he helped to form with three other great progressive rock musicians, the guitarist Allan Holdsworth, the keyboardist and violinist Eddie Jobson and the bassist and vocalist John Wetton.

Some of the material recorded on the album, despite never has been released on any studio album of U.K., was originally performed live in the 1978 live tour of U.K. It’s the case of the track “Forever Until Sunday”, which features an unaccredited Jobson work on violin and the ninth and tenth tracks “The Sahara Of The Snow, Pt 1 and 2”. By the other hand, the track “Hell’s Bells” used a fragment of a song original composed by the former and original colleagues, Allan Stewart and Alan Gowen, when they were members of the Canterbury scene band, founded in 1975, National Health.

By the time when “One Of A Kind” was recorded, two years later, the core group from “Feels Good To Me” has became even more focused. Bruford restricted himself to the drum kit, likely in an effort to create a recording that certainly could more easily be reproduced live. Gone too, were the vocals and the added trumpet, further indications that Bruford was looking at the group as a viable touring entity. Since Stewart has gone from National Health and Holdsworth was back from the time spent in the U.S.A. with Tony Williams, it seems Bruford as though that everything was lining up.

The main characteristics that can be founded on his debut studio album “Feels Good To Me” are perfectly evident on “One Of A Kind”, with everyone demonstrating palpable growth. Holdsworth’s style, as distinctive as it is, would ultimately evolve into something more abstract that would, in some ways, alienate some of his core audience. But at this point he is still eminently approachable, equally capable of relaxed and flowing lines as he is able of rapid fire exchanges. Berlin finds the comfortable middle ground, with a formidable technique that never seems on display for the sake of it. Stewart continues to avoid the trappings of contemporaries like Keith Emerson and Rick Wakeman, with a conception that is clearly broader than both and an interest in the ensemble that demonstrates a refreshing lack of ego.

The compositions on “One Of A Kind” are even more episodic than those on “Feels Good To Me”, and in many ways, more challenging. And yet, despite a landscape of constantly shifting meters and tempi, the magic of “One Of A Kind” is that it remains a compelling and an accessible work, despite its complexity. The irregular meters are so comfortably executed and in the pocket that unless one is paying attention, nobody doesn’t really notice that all. All the solos flow organically throughout the long form compositions, integrated in ways that makes them feel like a kind of a part of the larger whole even though, in performance, it would become clear just of how of much freedom was being afforded.


Conclusion: “One Of A Kind” is a collection of progressive rock songs with a jazz exploration, which latter would be defined as jazz/rock fusion. This is an excellent album with twists and turns around its music, punctuated by Bruford’s steadying and slightly subversive rhythms, Holdsworth’s flashes of fire, Berlin’s insistent bass line and Stewart’s remarkably colourful keyboard work. “One Of A Kind” is an album I bought some years ago and I always considered it an excellent album. It’s commonly accepted that it’s his best solo work and that it’s also one of the best albums of the jazz/rock fusion. This is an album with the same quality of the best albums of Mahavishnu Orchestra, Herbie Hancock, Brand X, Jean-Luc Ponty, Santana, Billy Cobham, Al Di Meola, Miles Davies, Return To Forever and Weather Report.


Music was my first love.
John Miles (Rebel)



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Comments:Add a Comment 
e210013
December 11th 2018


2180 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

After my review of "Feels Good To Me", it's now time to my review of "One Of A Kind", the second solo album of Bill Bruford. This is another fantastic album of Bruford, demonstrating perfectly well his musical vision and how great musician he is, in terms of composition and performance. So, of course I could not miss to reviewing this album. Sincerelly I hope you can love it as I do. Bill deserves that.

Divaman
December 11th 2018


3316 Comments


I almost feel like Bill is underrated by some Yes fans. Because Alan White spent a longer time with the band, many consider him to be the quintessential Yes drummer. But while I have my affection for White, if I were picking out the truly "classic" Yes lineup, it would be with Bruford on the drums.

Digging: Rachael Sage - Choreographic

e210013
December 11th 2018


2180 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I completely agree with you. Thanks.

MrSirLordGentleman
December 11th 2018


12328 Comments


How to prove Bruford's better than White in one word:

Red

e210013
December 11th 2018


2180 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Interesting and curious thought, SirLord.

Jethro42
December 11th 2018


15608 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

True, SirLord. Bruford is way more technical and creative than White. The latter couldn't do what Bruford did solo, for Yes or for KC.

What a lineup Bruford got back in the day!!! One of A Kind contains a bunch of killer tracks such as ''Hell's Bells'', one of his best. The t/t has its great moments, and it's a grower. ''Fainting Coils'' is up there with ''Hell's Bells'', and ''The Sahara Of Snow'' is also perfect. I prefer Feels Good To Me, because it's more immediate, more easy to digest and it flows better. Both albums have their strenght and have the same rating from me. I'm not a fan of ''5G'', but all the rest has somehow funny parts. The live Bruford Tapes is also worth getting. A must!

Will read your review sometime soon, brother in prog.

e210013
December 12th 2018


2180 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Thanks for your comment my friend. I knew already that you prefer his debut, unlike me, that I prefer this one. I don't know if it's because it was my first experience with Bruford as a solo artist or because it's an instrumental album. Anyway, "One Of A Kind" always had a very special feeling in me, like the other album recommended by me, "Unorthodox Behaviour" of Brand X.

I know that the live "The Bruford Tapes" is another great album, but I don't listened it, yet. I need to check it too.

TwigTW
December 12th 2018


3635 Comments


This is a nice listen e. It's more melodic than I expected a Bill Bruford album to be.

e210013
December 12th 2018


2180 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Yeah, you can bet on it. It's really amazing that this is a solo album made by a drummer.

wham49
December 12th 2018


4427 Comments


gotta check

Dude have gathered over the last few months a great cache of more obscure prog albums including some solo stuff, still working through it, but my faves so far have been Eloy and Steve HAckett solo

Jethro42
December 12th 2018


15608 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Eloy have more decent, ordinary albums than anything. They have an evident Pink Floyd vibe, but it needs patience to sink in. The long tracks could be shorter, and the short ones could be longer. Ocean is their magnum opus. Most of their very best songs are somewhat dispersed into a bunch of okay albums. Steve Hackett has a lot to offer, especially his first few albums, but also some of his earliest stuff.

Good review e21, buddy. Concerning my statement about Bruford vs White, I must add that White did an incredible job for Relayer. Would have been hard for Bruford to do better than that there. However, I easily imagine Bruford playing on Tales. But again, White is great there too.

Saros
December 12th 2018


207 Comments


Neato, nice to see this reviewed. Maybe it'll convince me to actually check this out now lmao.

e210013
December 12th 2018


2180 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

@ wham

I subscribe all what Jethro said.

About the German band Eloy, the influences in their music is clearly the psychedelic prog, and as you know the band that main influenced that style was Pink Floyd. Their music is very good and nice to hear and I also like of the German accent of their vocalist. As Jethro said, "Ocean" is their magnum opus, but you can also check some their other albums, which are also great, especially, "Dawn", "Silent Cries And Mighty Echoes" and "Planets".

About Steve Hackett, the man is a real eclectic artist wih a very extensive career, as a solo artist. As Jethro also said, he made great stuff all over is solo career. So, I recommend as a starting point, his four debut solo albums, whicg are probably more accessible, I mean, "Voyage Of The Acolyte", "Please Don't Touch", "Spectral Mornings" and "Defector". "Voyage Of The Acolyte" is even considered by many Genesis fans a kind of a Genesis lost album.

e210013
December 12th 2018


2180 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

@ Jethro

Once more I agree with you. Alan White did an incredible job on Relayer, indeed. It's probably his magnum opus with Yes. In relation about Bruford playing on "Tales", I don't know, but I'm sure that it would be great too. Still, you know that I'm one of those guys who loves that album. So, I love the work of White on that album too.

e210013
December 12th 2018


2180 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Thanks Saros. If you get excited about this album, you can also check his debut "Feels Good To Me".

wham49
December 13th 2018


4427 Comments


have heard voyage, and cured from Hackett. eloy, Silent cries, oceans, Inside, live

Oceans and VOyage are the faves from those bunch

e210013
December 13th 2018


2180 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Nice, wham.

About Hackett, "Voyage" is also my favourite and is in general considered his best solo work. But "Cured" is usually considered one on his weaker albums. I advise you to check "Spectral Mornings", surelly his best album of the 70's, next to "Voyage".

About Eloy, my favourites are "Oceans" and "Silent Cries". The live album is also great. Still, I advise you to check "Dawn" and "Planets", if you want.

wham49
December 13th 2018


4427 Comments


check Inside man, it is pretty good as well

I have such an over flow of stuff to get through right now with al that vinyl prog, with the fore mentioned along with about 4 Anthony Phillips, some wishbone I was unaware of, islands and red, and poisiden from King, a coUple Vander Graf and others that escape me

also about 90 Grateful Dead tapes I just got which includes the Spring 94 tour, summer of 80, fall of 84 and another full tour to get through, cant keep anything really straight from day to day


e210013
December 13th 2018


2180 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Man, that is really a very huge and hard work. But from what you mentioned you have really great stuff to check indeed. Good luck and enjoy it all.

Saros
December 13th 2018


207 Comments


Finally checked this out after procrastinating so long. I can safely say this is another favorite Yes member solo album.



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