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National Health - Playtime (CD) 
Cuneiform 0045775014524 
 
Genre: Prog-Rock 
Recorded: 1979 
Released: 2001 
 
John Greaves (vocals, bass); Phil Miller (guitar); Alan Gowen (keyboards); Pip Pyle (drums). Additional personnel: Alain Eckert (guitar). Includes liner notes by Aymeric Leroy and Pip Pyle. PLAYTIME is an appropriate title for this posthumous live release of legendary Canterbury progressive jazz-rockers National Health. After the departure of leader/keyboardist Dave Stewart, who liked to dot every ''i'' and cross every ''t,'' the group indulged in a more spontaneous, improvisational approach. Stewart's replacement Alan Gowen, who would die of leukemia less than two years after these 1979 performances, was just the man to spur on National Health's new direction. Gowen's fluid lead synth lines, as heard on such tracks as ''Nowadays a Silhouette'' and ''Dreams Wide Awake,'' rivaled Stewart or any other keyboardist of the time. The looser, more fusion-oriented approach heard in these performances does not abandon composition entirely--there's a vocal tune as well as the Stewart-era epic ''Squarer for Maude''--but the open, rolling feel the group achieves rings with possibilities that would be tragically mooted by Gowen's sad fate. Fortunately, PLAYTIME exists as a reminder of this brief shining moment 
14.99 EUR