K-Scope

Phil Manzanera, 1978

Records by Phil Manzanera, the lauded guitarist of Roxy Music, are svengali affairs: calling in favors and flighting in help from across his far flung career. On K-Scope vocal duties are handled by bassist Bill MacCormick, John Wetton (recently off King Crimson duty) and most interestingly by a young Tim and Neil Finn, who would later form the core of the 80s combo, Crowded House. K-Scope hails from that disorienting era when the bottom had finally fallen out on progressive rock's selling power, disco was in full swing and punk and new wave were already getting up to speed. The best moments here are when Phil tries to square this circle, pairing slick, pulsating rhythms with tricky patterns to make concise, self-contained songs.