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Renaissance Records

Wetton Manzanera - Wetton Manzanera [CD]

Wetton Manzanera - Wetton Manzanera [CD]

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John Wetton and Phil Manzanera no longer in the employ of Asia and Roxy Music, the pair undertook this mercenary adventure. Moreso than a merger of Astra and Avalon, the self-titled Wetton Manzanera is a mixture of romantic pop and arena rock that parallels the subsequent Conspiracy from Chris Squire and Billy Sherwood. There are, as you might expect, some cringe-worthy concessions to pop (“Suzanne,” “Every Trick In The Book,” “Do It Again”). But there’s also the unexpected: masterfully produced arena pop songs with some awfully catchy choruses (“One World,” “Round In Circles,” “You Don’t Have To Leave My Life”). Remembering that John Wetton was coming off the dismal Astra and Manzanera the lost Explorers, it’s unfair to expect too much from WettonManzanera. Despite some moments that invoke Japan (whom Keith Bessey also produced), this is much closer to the Wetton/Lake side of things, where a thin line separates well done from overdone. And, clearly, the first Asia album and Avalon are worlds apart from what’s here. However, pop music made by prog artists can be more interesting than the genuine article. Yes fans can also note the presence here of Alan White on drums.

Track List

  1. It’s Just Love
  2. Keep On Loving Yourself
  3. You Don’t Have To Leave My Life
  4. Suzanne
  5. Round In Circles
  6. Do It Again
  7. Every Trick In The Book
  8. One World
  9. I Can’t Let You Go
  10. Talk To Me
  11. Have You Seen Her Tonight?
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