British band Stackridge are are an eclectic bunch of musicians to say the least. In the early 70’s it seemed clear that Stackridge was destined to become the next ‘big thing’, another Genesis, or maybe another Yes. Sadly that was not to be the case, and by the mid 70’s the band decided to call it a day, and go their separate ways.

After more than 30 years four of the founding members decided it was time to put the past behind them and give Stackridge another go. One of the most unique aspects of reforming the band was that they approached their original manager Mike Tobin and asked him to once more take up the role.

Stackridge are unknown in the US. But that is about to change. They were recently in Los Angeles at the invite of The Craig Ferguson Late Late Show to record a brief set that is set to be aired in January. While they were ‘frolicking’ in Palm Springs I managed to catch up with Mike Tobin and the band, you can find my interview here.

In the mail yesterday was a package from the UK, Mike had graciously sent me some recent Stackridge material. Stackridge 4X4 could best be described as the DVD version of an EP. It features only 4 songs, but they certainly demonstrate the wide range of abilities that the band has.

I also want to give huge kudos to the video team, the videography is  simplistic but compelling. Much of the DVD is done in a split screen style and adds to the already rich and wonderful music. On the list of credits it would seem that only three cameramen were involved. This astounds me. A while ago I was talking to music video maestro Dan Catullo, his recent adventure with the Steve Miller Band involved 20 High Def Cams! A good friend of mine is AMD’s Charlie Boswell, as the link between AMD and Hollywood he spends his waking days working on movie’s and music videos, I told him about Stackridge 4X4 and he just about fell out of his chair!

OK, I guess I should probably mention the music 🙂

Trying to put a label on Stackridge is akin to herding cats! They have Ian Anderson (Jethro Tull) flute moments in the track Lost And Found, while Slow Train almost reminds me of a variation on something that a band like Fairport Convention might have concocted. Red Squirrel, can be best thought of as Jethro Tull meets The Eagles. North St. Grande is just a very pretty ballad, When I talked to the band, they mentioned that one of the musical influences are The Beatles, and I think that influence can be seen in this track. Actually it sounds like a tune that might come from Paul McCartney around the time that he penned Mull Of Kintire.

If you have not seen this great DVD, get it! You can order your copy from their their web page.  The DVD draws from the CD A Victory For Common Sense that can be ordered via the Amazon link above.

to Mike and the boys (and girls) this DVD is just a damn teaser, it is unfair to the fans to only have four songs on it. You should all be ashamed of yourselves!

Simon Barrett

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