The last part of "Throw Down the Sword" (from 6:00 to 10:00 in VIRGIN CD 263 050) is in fact the main part of "In the Skin". The song marked "In the Skin" is an extended jam of the final part of "In the Skin" (and a very nice jam too).
The lengths of the songs listed in this discography are from the GRIFFIN CD CYCL 030, because it's more accurate.
There's a lot of pirate copies of "Live In Chicago" The band gets no royalties from pirate copies, so support only legal versions!
Another CD that was bought in Helsinki (the sticker saying "Fazer Music, Import" is still on). This was an unforgettable summer holiday trip with my family (wife and two daughters). The day was hot and the night even worse trying to sleep in a hotel room without air conditioning. In the evening I listened to this CD with my portable CD player while the rest of the family tried to sleep. The situation was strange: three persons trying to sleep in the heat and a fourth person lying in bed grinning idiotically and giggling "quietly" every now and then.
Expectations rise during the intro... which is by the way a good one. Tedís solo in the middle is a dramatic one. During the quiet passage there was (for me) the new bass line. It fitted perfectly in and was the first gem in this CD to make me smile and trying to avoid giggling aloud.
All the vocals are performed by Andy and Ted (and done very well) as Mart has left again to concentrate on studio work. Now Ray Weston is on drums (as on the previous studio album), Andy Pyle on bass and Dan C. Gillogly on keyboards.
A live version of the song Andy Pyle collaborated in composing. Now he plays the bass with his soft touch (compared to Martin). It makes me think the whole song is built on this soft "circulating" bass line.
I imagined the "wall of guitars" in the studio version of this song was a result of lots of overdubs. In this live version, thereís almost the same effect although only two guitars are in use. So itís a question of using your instrument to the full extent. Everything isnít a result of studio trickery (thank God!).
Strange how it can be. This song wasnít on the official song list of this gig. It was performed and recorded during the soundcheck according to The Collectors Guide BookĎs set list section written by Gary Carter. I wasnít aware of this until February 1996, when I got my copy of the Collectors Guide Book. This just happened to be my favorite song on this album. Mainly because itís a "stripped" version. Itís nice to listen to two guitars playing in unison, harmonies or interacting with each other in all the ways only Andy and Ted can. Andy in your left ear and Ted on your right. No overproduction, just two great guitar players, a bass, drums and keyboards. This made me sigh out loud although I was told to be quiet.
Itís about time to make this comment: Iíve always admired Andyís talent when someone else is playing the main solos and Andy is more like a rhythm guitarist. Heís never just churning out the chords, thereís always some tasty bits built in. Like heís doing rhythm guitar and some small tasty fill-up solos at the same time. Theyíre one of the reasons you have to listen to songs performed Wishbone Ash more than once to get the whole picture.
This is one those songs where this is more than obvious. Tedís performing the main solos and Andy "jingles" all the time. The only "problem" is: I do miss the double lead part on this live version. Why isnít Andy joining in nowadays? I know he used to do it, because he does it in the video filmed at Colston Hall, Bristol in 1989.
Iím writing this chapter on midsummer after enjoying the midsummer eve (and night) with my brothers and their families. Among other things we did "sing" our favorite songs. When the song was familiar, everyone who knew the song joined in. One of the songs I started to sing was this one. My relatives know my interest/sickness (choose whatever is suitable) for Wishbone Ash so they knew this had to come...
Well, now I know Iím not the only with "weird" taste in Wishbone Ashís music: a guy (I know his name, but wonít reveal his name here unless he approves it) has told his relatives to play this song in his funerals. I might steal this idea and add at least Lady Jay in the list.
A long version of this instrumental. The main reason for that is the final jam performed mainly by Ted alone. This was another situation that I still recall as being disturbing for my roommates in the hotel room in Helsinki. Some "chuckling" might have come out of my mouth during the jam...
Another long version because of the long final solos. The bass solo in the middle "suffers" a little from Andy Pyleís softer touch (Martinís use of plectrum makes the solo sound different). Andyís reply solo is just as tasty as before. One of the immortal ones in my ears.
Yet another prolonged version. This "ränttätänttä" (see the definition of ränttätänttä from the personal view of the studio version) song deserves it. The "guitar battle" near the end is something to listen to and the "wacky finale" is an ever longer one than in the studio version. Once again I woke up my family and they were angry, but I just smiled.
While listening to this song, I always wonder how many times this hes been performed during the years. As a small hit in 1972 it has stayed in the repertoire through all these years. According to The Collectors Guide BookĎs set list section written by Gary Carter, Blowiní Free has always been in the set. Well, Iím not bored with the song and hopefully Andy and Ted arenít either. As this version which lasts more than eight minutes shows, they seem to have fun jamming through the song.
Andy has to like this song because he sings and plays this song with such intensity. It left me sad and happy at the same time: itís a good song, but why did it have to be the last one. I could have stayed up all night...
Written by: Rainer Frilund - Last update: Sep, 1998