October 8th 1973

“Gra came up in the evening and brought Back into the Future – Smart!”

Man’s “Back Into the Future” was a 1973 double album by the Welsh ‘jam rock’ band which suffers the same problem 90% or more of all double albums suffer from… “a tad too much filler”

Don’t get me wrong I love – most of – this album, and it’s a regular visitor to both my iPod and my in-car stereo… however, there are tracks that really should have been well and truly aborted during the process of making it. (Which, given new technology, I do!)

Maybe the band were trying just a little too hard following the departure of lead guitarist Deke Leonard? (Deke left to form his own AWESOME band, Iceberg… more on them later I’m sure)

Whatever the reason, the album features some impressive highs (“A Night in Dad’s Bag“, the title track and a stunning live rendition of “C’Mon” for instance) and some terrible lows (“Sospan Fach” recorded with a bloody Welsh male Voice choir for cliff’s sake) which all add up to a less than entirely satisfactory package.

Also less than impressive (now anyway… back then I may have thought differently) is the rambling 20+ minute finale of “Jam Up Jelly Tight/Oh No Not Again“, now more often referred to as Spunk Rock ’73. It’s cuts like this one that gave the band their reputation as the “Welsh Grateful Dead” or the “Welsh Quicksilver Messenger Service”, two West Coast American bands whose output I have never really cared for.

Like most double albums it could so easily have been a FANTASTIC single album.

Oh well…


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