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Jadis - More Than Meets The Eye (Special Edition)

Jadis - More Than Meets The Eye (Special Edition)Originally released in 1992, this classic Jadis debut CD has been 'cleaned up' and remixed, and combined with a bonus CD of all the early demos produced by Marillion guitarist Steve Rothery, and an impressive booklet with sleeve notes added makes this a great package. Of course, many of you will have the original CD, so I won't bore you with all the track names, but in comparison to the old one, it's like hearing your first ever CD after years of vinyl overload (remember those?). From the opening two minutes of Sleepwalk, the impact of the new remix hits you like a bullet, by sounding fresh and new, and of course tracks like G13 and Holding Your Breath are given a new lease of life.

Going back to the booklet side of things, there are the 'youthful' looks of the band from thirteen years ago, and yes, John Jowitt had hair back then too! There is a nice picture of Gary Chandler and John onstage from the outdoor festival from Uden in Holland during the glory days in the early to mid nineties of all-day prog festivals.

When it first was released, this album gained Jadis a lot of credit, and with many line up changes from the raw bones to the present day, the classic line-up seems to be in many peoples eyes of Gary Chandler, Martin Orford, John Jowitt and Steve Christey. The history of all the tracks are included in the booklet too, with Gary's informative comments on how the songs were formed and there are some technical details too.

Hiding under Gary's bed were the original tapes of the band's first vinyl album and other pieces. This album is quite a rare item these days, as it was numbered and some were signed too. So hence the bonus disc. You get fifty minutes of the early Jadis material, with two versions of This Changing Face, and the classics of Follow Me To Salzburg, Scratching The Surface, Out Of Reach and the earliest version of The Beginning And The End. Also included are the 'comedy' moments of two short bursts of Baboon Enquiries thrown in for good measure too.  As you would expect, the quality of the production is good but not quite on the same level as the first disc, but worth hearing on CD.

This is a essential purchase for Jadis fans and collectors, and a worthwhile one for someone who hasn't heard anything by the band before. To many people, it is 'the Jadis album' and a great launching pad to start your collection off!

Danny Mayo



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