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Here is pre-Hands aka Prism in an earliest 1975-76 incarnation and the 1976-77 near-Hands form that finally coalesced into Hands. Get a sneek peak at the raw and true life of a band struggling to be heard through noisy nite club chatter, apathetic ping pong ball echoes, local Texas radio shows, live and in the studio.
Prism plays mostly original tunes but does cover Gentle Giant’s “Plain Truth” and King Crimson’s “Great Deceiver”. Their Crimson cover is impressive, even in such a raw format and Prism sings as good as if not better than Wetton. The best offering of this early era is the live studio session cut, “Triangle Of New Flight”. Probably a crowd pleaser with all its funk but weakest cut to me was the you-can-dance-to-it, “Multi Dimensional Jive”.
Things polish up noticeably with late era Prism’s “Hands in the Fire” which sounds much better than the later version found on Hands. Probably the hippest, jazzy, offbeat cut is the 8:43 “Nasebluten” which shows just how creative and what potential these guys really had. This is great Canterbury jazz fusion stuff here. Tracks 11-15 are all from Prism’s opening for Gentle Giant at the Electric Ballroom in 1977. We hear a great flute solo, then “Ditty” which is found on Hands’ Palm Mystery release. More quality Prism follows in a Dregsian mode, then a keyboard solo, and another Palm Mystery cut, “King’s Mischief”. Prism outros in a whacked, jazzy, and playful tune called “Skeletone Rag”. For fans of Hands this a completist must-have.
I love jazz because it mixes intellect and emotion in a very spontaneous way.
I was first exposed to jazz by liberating a Coltrane and a Pharoah Sanders record from a friend in NYC and listening to them over and over until I got it.
My advice to new listeners is you have to take the time to listen to some jazz tunes a number of times until it starts to make sense.