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6 Degrees Entertainment

Title - 'Modern Music: Expanded & Remastered Edition'
Artist - Be-Bop Deluxe

For those not in the know, Be-Bop Deluxe were an English progressive rock band who achieved critical acclaim and moderate commercial success during the mid to late 1970s.

The band's sound emerged as a mixture of glam rock, prog rock and straightforward rock and roll, where science fiction imagery was common in the lyrics; along with the more traditional themes of love and the human condition.

Esoteric Recordings (via Cherry Red Records UK) have just released a newly remastered and expanded 2 CD edition of Modern Music, the legendary 1976 album by Be-Bop Deluxe.

Recorded in June and July 1976 at Abbey Road Studio Three, Modern Music was the fourth album by Be-Bop Deluxe and the second to feature the line-up of Bill Nelson (vocals, guitars, keyboards), Charles Tumahai (bass, vocals), Andy Clark (keyboards), and Simon Fox (drums).

Following on from the success and critical praise for the band’s previous album Sunburst Finish, the album was once more co-produced by Bill Nelson and John Leckie.

Much of the material appearing on the album was conceived by Bill Nelson whilst Be-Bop Deluxe were undertaking their first tour of the USA in March 1976.

The wonderful and expansive Modern Music “suite” which dominated the album was inspired by Bill’s experiences of America, the disillusionment with the US music business and a longing for home.

Beside the fine achievement of the suite, Modern Music also featured other fine songs such as 'Orphans of Babylon,' 'Kiss of Light,' 'The Bird Charmers Destiny,' and the epic 'Down on Terminal Street,' all of which ensured that the album was a hit in both the UK and the USA.

This expanded reissue has been newly remastered from the original master tapes and features an additional 19 bonus tracks drawn from a stunning new stereo mix from the original multi-track tapes by award winning engineer Stephen W. Tayler.

It also features previously unreleased outtakes from the album sessions and a rare single B-side, 'Shine.'

CD 1:
1. 'Orphans of Babylon'
2. 'Twilight Capers'
3. 'Kiss of Light'
4. 'The Bird Charmers Destiny'
5. 'The Gold at the End of My Rainbow'
6. 'Bring Back the Spark'
7. 'Modern Music'
8. 'Dancing in the Moonlight (All Alone)'
9. 'Honeymoon on Mars'
10. 'Lost in the Neon World'
11. 'Dance of the Uncle Sam Humanoids'
12. 'Modern Music (Reprise)'
13. 'Forbidden Lovers'
14. 'Down on Terminal Street'
15. 'Make the Music Magic'
16. 'Shine' (B-Side of Single)

CD 2: (The New Stereo Mixes)
1. 'Orphans of Babylon'
2. 'Twilight Capers'
3. 'Kiss of Light'
4. 'The Bird Charmers Destiny'
5. 'The Gold at the End of My Rainbow'
6. 'Bring Back the Spark'
7. 'Modern Music'
8. 'Dancing in the Moonlight (All Alone)'
10. 'Honeymoon on Mars'
11. 'Lost in the Neon World'
12. 'Dance of the Uncle Sam Humanoids'
13. 'Modern Music (Reprise)'
14. 'Forbidden Lovers'
15. 'Down on Terminal Street'
16. 'Make the Music Magic'
17. 'Shine' [Bonus Track]
18. 'Forbidden Lovers (First Version)' [Bonus Track]
19. 'The Bird Charmer's Destiny (First Version)' [Bonus Track]

To my mind and ear, Modern Music is just filled to the brim with incredible melodic ideas that keep flowing like a wondrous spring of breathtaking musical brilliance throughout!

It's fine writing and musicianship keep this recording floating like a feather on sweetly scented winds and with ace guitarist Bill Nelson's (the Bop behind Be-Bop Deluxe) guitar transcending everything it comes within ear shot of, well, now having this wondrous expanded edition in my hand, life is great once more.

His miraculous tone, phrasing, fluid leads and expert rhythm playing embellish these songs with the joy of a man gifted well beyond most guitarists.

Furthermore, he gives you a listening experience that is seldom rivaled and although Modern Music is not a heavy album by any means, it definitely makes a huge impact on the listener ready to be enveloped by it's warm embrace.

Many Be-Bop Deluxe fans might say Sunburst Finish is their favorite Be-Bop Deluxe album and yes, sure, of course it's a right royal doozy, but then Live In The Air Age came out and many of those songs were on there and just amazingly done with even more energy!

So, for me, this album was the one that grabbed me and never let me go, even after all these years. Jumping rock subgenres like the beautiful ballad, 'Down On Terminal Street' to the funky fusion energy of 'Dance of the Uncle Sam Humanoids,' Modern Music is a whole greater than it's sum.

Filled with exotic shades and colors and enough down to earth simplistic beauty to give any listener years of enjoyment, simply put, Modern Music exemplifies perfectly the group's soaring space-age sound, and the sound of the era.

Oh, and this is an absolutely fabulous remastering of Be-Bop Deluxe’s studio masterpiece. For the album sounds as fresh and groundbreaking as when it was first released. Kudos, Esoteric and Cherry Red. Kudos.

Official 2CD Purchase Link