Written By Braddon S. Williams

BE-BOP DELUX- Sunburst Finnish

In addition to sporting one of the most striking covers ever, Sunburst Finish (1975) by Be-Bop Deluxe is full of great music by a British band that never quite made it to the success they deserved.

Led by Bill Nelson, who sang lead vocals, played lead guitar (brilliantly!), and composed the lion’s share of their music, Be-Bop Deluxe were known variously as art rock, glam rock, progressive rock, and just a damn fine rock ‘n roll band.

Nelson wrote in a futuristic style lyrically, touching on elements of sci-fi and with a flair for the poetic.

His song titles draw the listener in with expectations of mysterious happenings: Blazing Apostles, Sleep That Burns, Crying To The Sky, Ships In The Night, Like An Old Blues, Life In The Air Age, Beauty Secrets, Fair Exchange, and Crystal Gazing are all full of melody and quirky beauty (and magnificent guitar work) which totally won me over.

When you see a picture of a beautiful naked woman holding a burning guitar over her head, you sort of demand the music to be special…and Be-Bop Deluxe fulfills that wish.

Influences And Recollections of a Musical Mind

Another relative obscurity by American standards, 1977’s Live! In The Air Age by Be-Bop Deluxe was full of elegant guitar, quirky vocals, big rhythms, and odd songs that combined a touch of science fiction, a handful of glam, and a touch of hard rock mixed in a tasty stew. My favorite tracks were Adventures In A Yorkshire Landscape, Fair Exchange, Sister Seagull, and Shine. A band that shared similarities with Queen and T. Rex, but never made it big in the states. Still, several of these songs remain in my playlists even now.

Written By Braddon S. Williams

Influences And Recollections of a Musical Mind