Monday, 4 August 2014

"Cado Belle" by CADO BELLE [featuring Maggie Reilly] (2014 Big Break Records (BBR) 'Expanded' CD Remaster) - A Review by Mark Barry...

"…I'm Rocked To Stony Silence…"

Cado Belle made only two official releases in the UK - their highly revered self-titled debut album in late 1976 and a hard-to-find 4-track 12” Single EP in late 1977 (see below). Across the years there have been two attempts to my knowledge at CD reissue (2004 and 2008) - both of which are hard-to-find and for years have pulled extortionate prices on the Net. Well at last in 2014 - Big Break Records of the UK have gotten hold of the master tapes and interviewed members of the band for this superb expanded CD remaster that gives us their entire recorded output and a bit little more thrown in. Here are the wee Scottish Soul details…

UK released 23 June 2014 on CD (July 2014 in the USA) – "Cado Belle" by CADO BELLE on Big Break Records CDBBR 0268 (Barcode 5013939056831) is an 'Expanded Edition' CD Remaster and plays out as follows (58:32 minutes):

1. All Too Familiar
2. Infamous Mister
3. Rocked To Stony Silence
4. I Name This Ship Survival
5. Paper In The Rain
6. That Kind Of Fool [Side 2]
7. Airport Shutdown
8. Rough Diamonds
9. Got To Love
10. Stones Throw From Nowhere
Tracks 1 to 10 are their sole album “Cado Belle” - released October 1976 on Anchor Records ANCL 2015 in the UK and Anchor Records AN 2015 in the USA

11. It’s Over
12. September
13. Play It Once For Me
14. Gimme Little Sign
Tracks 11 to 14 are "The Cado Belle E.P." - released November 1977 as a 4-track 12” single in an album picture sleeve in the UK on Anchor Records AN 1

Track 15 is new - an Ashley Beedle re-edit of "I Name This Ship Survival" - it remixes and lengthens the album track from 4:33 minutes to 5:11 minutes

The band arose out of the ashes of two obscure Scottish groups - Stuart MacKillop’s pop combo called “Joe Cool” and a jazz-fusion unit called “Up”. They signed to the then little known Anchor Records Label in the UK (Anchor was home to Paul Carrack’s ACE who had a huge hit with “How Long” from their wonderful “Five-A-Side” album). Their sound was a rock-group with soul/funk leanings – a sort of lighter version of the Average White Band with a Van Morrison feel to the tunes - fronted by a classy female singer. I remember seeing them live in Dublin with my sister several times (they were hugely popular there) and was duly blown away.

STUART MacKILLOP on Keyboards
ALAN DARBY on Guitar
COLIN TULLY on Saxophone
DAVID ROY on Drums

The 12-page inlay pictures the gorgeous ‘vaudeville’ artwork of the Cado Belle E.P. as well as the two 7” singles lifted off the album - “Got To Love” b/w “Paper In The Rain” on Anchor ANC 1033 (released October 1976) and “Stones Throw To Nowhere” b/w “Airport Shutdown” on Anchor ANC 1038 (January 1977). A bit of a slip up is not producing the inner sleeve of the LP that had the lyrics to each song on either side. But balancing that is new interviews with Lead Singer Maggie Reilly and Saxophonist Colin Tully recalling the album’s history, gigs, lack of chart action and eventual breakup in 1978 when the Anchor label folded leaving them high and dry. But the big news for fans is the fabulous audio quality - really beautiful stuff - gorgeous throughout - especially on one of my all-time faves - the Alan Darby penned “September”. It’s the second track on Side 1 of the E.P. and comes on like Gary Moore’s “Parisienne Walkways” from 1978 - all Soulful guitar and aching lyrics. It’s also nice to hear their covers of “It’s Over” by Boz Scaggs (a co-write with David Paich of Toto - it’s from the 1976 “Silk Degrees” LP) and the 1967 Soul classic “Gimme Little Sign” by Brenton Wood. For many fans - the album cuts “Stones Throw From Nowhere” and “Rocked To Stony Silence” in this beautiful audio quality will thrill - but there’s also the superb Stuart MacKillop tune “Play It Once For Me” on Side 2 of the E.P. - what gems the lot of them.

Contributing to their Soulful Rock vibe is the fantastic Glasgow-born Scottish singer MAGGIE REILLY (not to be confused with Maggie Bell from Stone The Crows). She was similar vocally to Maria Muldaur in ways, even a touch of Chaka Khan circa Rufus. Maggie later had duet hits with Mike Oldfield on three occasions “Five Miles Out” in 1982, “Moonlight Shadow” in 1983 and “To France” in 1984. Since 1976 she’s sessioned as a vocalist on albums by Jack Bruce, George Harrison, Nick Mason of Pink Floyd, Sisters Of Mercy and Mike Oldfield. Maggie has her own website now and a few dedicated to her. Maggie’s latest album “Rowan” was released in 2006 and has received huge praise from all quarters (especially her lovely cover version of “Wild Mountain Thyme”).

So why didn’t CADO BELLE make it? As others have noted - I guess they lacked that one killer hit that would have made people and the charts sit up and take notice - perhaps if they’d released the epic “Stones Throw From Nowhere” first - things might have been different. Still - it’s a sign that they’re still remembered with such affection today - closing in on 40 years after the event…

A stunning BBR (Big Break Records) CD reissue - well done to all involved…

This review is part of my SOUNDS GOOD Music Book Series. One of those titles is CLASSIC 1970s ROCK - an E-Book with over 250 entries and 2100 e-Pages - purchase on Amazon and search any artist or song (click the link below). Huge amounts of info taken directly from the discs (no cut and paste crap). 

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