Personnel: Bill Bruford (drums, cymbals); Jeff Berlin (vocals, electric bass); Barbara Gaskin, Amanda Parsons (vocals); John Clark (guitar); Georgie Born (cello); Dave Stewart (keyboards).
Recorded at Surrey Sound, Surrey, England in October & November 1979.
The Bill Bruford band's third and final album finds Bill and the boys going out on more stylistic limbs than ever before. The incorporation of bassist Jeff Berlin's deadpan vocals bring a decidedly more song-based orientation to the mix, while Dave Stewart's keyboards, and the band's arrangements overall, flirt with experimentation on the periphery of rock and jazz.
"Gothic 17" makes ample use of Stewart's strident, klaxon-like synths, as Bruford's intense rhythmic thrust propels the whole group into the stratosphere, accompanied by Berlin's Alice In Wonderland arcing streams of consciousness. "The Sliding Floor" uses all manners of trilling keyboards, prog rock drums and sheets of guitar noise to enlighten the few unaware of Bruford's illustrious past. Containing a daunting collection of brazen electronic sounds and time-skewed percussive somersaults, the third time for the Bruford clan was indeed a charm, resulting in one of the great unsung (and underrated) fusion albums of the early '80s.