Diamond Head Collectors Edition


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Over the last decade I have released five studio albums of completely new material: Vozero, 6pm, 50 mins later, Firebird V11 and Corroncho. During this same period I also released a retrospective compilation of two cds and a DVD called ‘ Phil Manzanera,1972-2007, The music’. In the last few years, in between touring and producing, I have enjoyed revisiting my solo albums and re-releasing them as series of Collector’s editions, raiding the archive for lost tracks and memorabilia. The latest Collectors’ editions are my first solo album Diamond Head and Quiet Sun’s Mainstream , albums from 1975. I think of them as fraternal twins, recorded at the same time, gestated in the same studio and over the same time period: 12pm-6pm Diamond Head sessions and Mainstream, the Quiet Sun album from 6pm-12am. Quiet Sun was the band I was in before Roxy Music, with Bill MacCormick , Charles Hayward and Dave Jarrett. Because of Roxy’s success I had the opportunity to record a solo album but unbeknownst to my management company I recorded two albums in the studio time allocated for one album. When they were finished I presented both to a stupefied management and Island Records. These two new Collectors Editions bring together all the recordings from the sessions, with demos and versions as well as new photos and is intended not only for the collector but also as an introduction to the variety of music that has interested me over the last 40 years.

PHIL MANZANERA
Jan 2011.

DIAMOND HEAD PHIL MANZANERA

Phil Manzanera’s first post-Roxy foray into solo albums is a terrific all-star affair that still holds up enormously well. Calling on favors from Roxy members present and past, and those from the Cambridge/British art rock scene, Manzanera assembled a supergroup for every song. Robert Wyatt sings Spanish gibberish on the opener “Frontera,” a rewrite of his own “Team Spirit.” Brian Eno teams up for the sunny “Big Day” and the nonsensical “Miss Shapiro,” both of which would not have been out of place on his own early solo albums. John Wetton (of several groups including Family and Asia) sings a duet with Doreen Chanter (of the Chanter Sisters and the Joe Cocker Band), and Bill MacCormick of Matching Mole and Quiet Sun sings his own “Alma,” the album’s closing ballad. Fans of any of the singers above, not to mention Manzanera, whose party this is, won’t be disappointed. A majority of these tracks went on to form the set list for 801 Live.

“Well, this is a guitar player’s solo album. Full of passionate chops and shattering leads… one hell of a package.”
(Creem)

“Roxy Music’s guitarist extraordinaire makes an impressive solo start.”
(Record World)

“Manzanera impresses throughout, with his usual good taste and flawless technique… there’s a whole lot of everything here, and very engagingly presented.”
(Sounds)

“Diamond Head is… a polished set of classy, lovingly constructed songs… valid, listenable and satisfying.” (NME) “The album is an appealing mixture of fine, if occasionally bizarre, music from a cross section of some of the best current English musicians. Even beyond Roxy Music, Manzanera is a talent in his own right.”
(Rolling Stone)

“The album is… a must for R. Music devotees.”
(Disc)

“Cut after cut an absolute pleasure. More, more!”
(LA Free Press)

“Phil Manzanera’s ‘Diamond Head’, it’s worth its weight in gold.”
(Cashbox)

“1975’s Diamond Head displayed a dazzling array of styles (Latin, psychedelia, epic art-pop), and guest stars (Eno, Robert Wyatt, plus all of Manzanera’s pre-Roxy outfit, Quiet Sun); one of the best albums released that year.”
(Uncut)

Featured musicians:
Robert Wyatt
Brian Eno
John Wetton
Paul Thompson
Bill MacCormick
Doreen Chanter
Eddy Jobson
Mongezi Feza
Andy Mackay
Brian Turrington