Stepps: Waltz For Tiger Joe: Complete Recordings - White


Release Date: 03-08-2024

SKU: 8809114693007

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Stepps: Waltz For Tiger Joe: Complete Recordings - White

1. Product Details

The genealogy of two musicians, keyboardist Oleg Ditrich and bassist Michael Vidale, started in 1973 with the band Aragorn and continued to Bedtime Story - Snakes Alive - Original Steps - Stepps- Stepps2, for about 5 years. In that short period of time, the group's name was changed six times, and musically it changed from progressive rock to jazz rock. Surprisingly, all of the groups listed above left behind good quality recordings. This was possible because at the time Michael Vidale was a trainee recording engineer at his father's recording studio Clover Studios, and, shortly after, at EMI Sydney Studios. He used the studio free time to call in his band members and record the music. All the master tapes are preserved in good condition, and it is very fortunate to be able to fully understand the evolution of the band's musical interests and their growth through this recording. Those who started as the progressive rock band like that, added elements of jazz-rock to Snakes Alive creating a more complex and powerful sound. However, two years later, Stepps' album Waltz for Tiger Joe, completely removed the previous dark and heavy tone and transformed into a light and sophisticated sound. In particular, the attractive voice of the newly joined female vocalist Bernadine Morgan became a key factor in determining the impression of the Stepps. However, the essence of Stepps lies in the brilliant playing of the remaining four. Creative phrasing of Oleg Ditrich on electric piano, Ian Hildebrand's guitar with unique voicing, Ralph Cooper's drums with delicate and rich articulation, Michael Vidale who plays bass as a part of the ensemble with a layer of his own line - the sound they created is similar to technical and experimental European jazz rock. In particular, the part where the elegant high-tone female scat is added is at first glance reminiscent of the Belgian group COS. The above description about STEPPS's style is also characteristic of Canterbury Sound, a British experimental jazz-progressive genre. (COS is often referred to as the 'Canterbury Sound of Belgium') Especially, main characteristics such as a quartet of electric piano-centered as the main instrument, unexpected development by technical ensemble, a refreshing female voice, are the same as the things of Canterbury's representative groups Hatfield and the North and National Health. After Oleg Dietrich left, Stepps continued activities with a new keyboardist Bill O'Riordan as a slightly new band Stepps2, but after that, as members left one by one and eventually disbanded. With this, one 'progressive and experimental' season, which had been conducting various musical experiments for about five years, has come to an end. And the members were engaged in their respective activities in line with the new music trends that emerged in the late 70s. To name a few notable activities - drummer Ralph Cooper joined Australia's leading pop group Air Supply and became a part of an internationally acclaimed team. Michael Vidale joined Jimmy and the Boys, a shock rock/new wave pioneer and can stand in front of a wider audience with success on the charts. Since then, these members have not left the music scene and are still active.

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