Jeremy Spencer - Bend in the Road

Jeremy Spencer Bend in the Road cover
Jeremy Spencer
Bend in the Road
Propelz Media
Jeremy Spencer is a British musician that used to be a member of Fleetwood Mack for a few years in the late 60s. He’s a bluesman and expectedly, he plays the blues and he plays them with the experience that some 4 decades might have given him. On “Bend in the Road” JS uses some American based, Detroit, based musicians a trio that called themselves “Saint Cecilia” and actually without delay released also their own eponymous album as well along with JS’s. The result is a fine mix of Blues with some hints of Americana.
One gets fine, piano accompanied, guitar torturing exercises, in homesickness like the namesake, of the very song that’s a well-known blues standard by the great Homesick James.
Or the equally, honky tonky picky, prickly but sorta more desperately hungover, “Cry for Me Baby”.
Then there’s the amazingly fragile and beyond beautiful “Whispering Fields” that just brought tears to my eyes. A melody, simple as a morning dew, but worthy of a George Harrison.
“Walked a Mile” might be simple and a bit of a storyteller, but it ain’t too bad.
“Earthquake” is quirkier, with a bit of a standard rock n roll rhythm and yeah, even a slight hint of the Talking Heads maybe?
“Aphrodite” is an instrumental that has some nice strumming and I suppose either imitates or has some mandolin or bouzouki, or something and some percussion that fits that mood to make it sound Mediterranean – actually Greek, to pay tribute either to the ancient Goddess of beauty or to some beautiful lady that bears the name? Who knows?
“Secret Sorrow” hits those long sustained notes that really send shivers down ones soul and it’s predictably soulful.
“Stranger Blues” by Elmore James, cousin of Homesick, is much funkier with some syncopated rhythms but the vocals here are somewhat strained as they do get on occasion when some higher notes are called for, they’re not necessarily bad, as probably Jer, knows what to do and what not to do, but, obviously, higher stuff, well, let’s say it’s not his forte!
“Homework”. Well I always hated it! This one is more organic and I don’t have to do it, but, it’s a bit tedious.
“Desired Haven” is a melodic, piece with fabulous bends. A really beautiful instrumental that brought me to mind some of the more beautiful moments of the Dire Straits.
“Come to Me” enters with the most delicate and beautiful intro and intro and some very fitting strings. It continues in an almost religious like, harmonious, melodic, joyous way... so serene and so beautiful... amazing really.
“Merciful Sea” is a very tranquil piano piece with very faint hints of guitar, almost “inaudible”. Just nuances really. It's really beautiful, needless to say.
“Refugees” is a remake of an older song of Jeremy’s from his 70s album Flee, that, I must profess that I have no real, knowledge of! Sorry!
Finally, “Bend in the Road” is a precious, semi acoustic, number with some female vocals and a very hippy, happy dreamy atmosphere. It’s quite uplifting and very beautiful and a perfect conclusion to a very well-crafted album...
All in all, “Bend in the Road” is such tremendous piece of work, and it’s just a pity that Jeremy Spencer’s output has been so sporadic over the years. Bravo.