I was not especially a fan of “glam” rock, or “glitter” rock, if you prefer, back when it was all the rage in the early 1970’s. I wasn’t much of a fan of the gender-bending and the fancy costumes the practitioners were wearing, as I mentioned when David Bowie passed away last month. But there was one glam rock band I liked despite it all, because their sound was different, and that band was Roxy Music. Their sound was influenced by Brian Eno on synthesizers. He was also responsible for “treatments,” including the use of tape loops and actually synthesizing the sound of the rest of the band: Bryan Ferry, the primary songwriter, on vocals and keyboards, Phil Manzanera on guitar, Andy MacKay on saxophone and oboe, Paul Thompson on drums, and Graham Simpson on bass.
The first song of theirs I heard was “Do The Strand,” from their 1973 album For Your Pleasure. I found it on a Warner Brothers’ sampler album. It didn’t get much airplay, and it failed to chart.
Our second song today is “Love Is The Drug,” from their 1975 album Siren. Eno had left the band and was replaced by Eddie Jobson on synthesizers and violin. Mackay and Manzanera were now handling “treatments” as well. This got more airplay, and reached #30 on the Hot 100 in 1976.
Roxy Music split up for good in 2011, but the members are still active as producers and performers.
Roxy Music, your Two for Tuesday, February 23, 2016.