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ROGER CHAPMAN ‘Techno-Prisoners’
(Mystic MYSCD168)(2003)

This 1987 release has somewhat divided the Roger Chapman fanbase. During this time, at the record company's behest, Roger took his distinctive vocal chords off to Holland and sessions with ace dance producers The Bolland Brothers.

Roger Chapman

The results are not as weird as you might expect and - more importantly - not techno save for the ubiquitous drum machine. Sensibly, the producers retained a cutting rock guitar and infectious rhythm to connect the album with Chappo's heritage, so if anything it comes across as a well-produced and polished effort if a little different from the norm. In fact the Chapman compositions on the album are possibly somewhat out of synch with the out-and-out commercialism that otherwise pertains.

In what is turning out to be the 'Year of the Chappo', with DVDs and a boxed set already in the racks, Mystic must be applauded for their current reissue programme. With informative sleeve notes and bonus tracks, this is a much needed and not-before-time retrospective on one of the true vocal giants of British rock. This release reveals also that Roger Chapman has always been prepared to experiment. Check out 'Black Forest', bury any prejudice that this ain't what a Family man should aspire to, and you will be impressed.

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Review by David Randall

Buy this CD

Black Forest
© 2003 Mystic Records. All rights reserved.

***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly

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