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When The Eagle Flies (Remastered) Original recording remastered

47 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Original recording remastered, May 20, 2003
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Editorial Reviews

Their Top 10 1974 LP was Traffic's swan song, a return to the band's jazzy roots featuring Dream Gerrard and the soulful title song. Domestic CD debut!
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 20, 2003)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording remastered
  • Label: Island
  • ASIN: B000096FSZ
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #19,423 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

70 of 74 people found the following review helpful By N. Chandran on August 16, 2005
Format: Audio CD
Way back in the early nineties when I first came upon this album, with great expectations fresh from experiencing "The low sparks of ...", this album was a disappointment! Gone was full sound of the multi faceted band, the pronounced jazz influences, the guitars, the memorable tunes - instead it seemed that the music was only Steve Winwood singing and playing his piano/keys, with sparse support from Chris Wood and Jim Capaldi. Infact in the first few listens I couldnt even hold onto/remember one single track from this album.

But life is full of surprises - after a few years of repeated listening, while "Low sparks" became a bit too familiar and boring, "John Barleycorn" seems raw, "Shootout at the fantasy factory" seems inconsistent and incomplete, it is this sombre and soulful album which has stood the test of time. This album has flowered in my consciousness in more ways than i could have imagined. It is definitely Winwood at the peak of his creative abilities shorn of all the inessential influences - producing deep, subtle and substantial music. There's more music in this album than what appears at first, but it takes time for it to reveal itself. This is one of those rare albums which is complete in itself and is at peace with the world.

Dream gerrard, Graveyard people, Walking in the wind, Memories of a ..., Love - are all classic standout tracks. A desert island album for sure!
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47 of 52 people found the following review helpful By Alan Caylow on May 29, 2003
Format: Audio CD
I've always considered Traffic to be the best thing that Steve Winwood has ever done in his long, illustrious career. Traffic's music is a sensational fusion of rock, pop, jazz & folk, with a generous dose of art-rock tossed in for good measure. You never get anything less from Traffic than first-rate singing, songwriting & musicianship. The group's last studio album from the 70's, "When The Eagle Flies," is a brilliant disc from Winwood & the boys. It's also the band's best album. FINALLY available on CD in the U.S. after languishing for so many years in Importland, this is an excellent album to add to your collection, and one that more Traffic fans should definitely seek out. The highlights for me include the astounding "Dream Gerrard," an 11-minute prog-rock masterwork & arguably the band's finest piece. The bizarre lyrics would make Tori Amos proud (Hippos don't wear hats/Lobsters shriek if provoked), but Winwood sings them beautifully, with the whole song driven with GREAT musical force by the band, including some fabulous keyboard work from Winwood, and an absolutely *slamming* performance on the drumkit by Jim Capaldi. "Graveyard People" is another winner, a very spacy, atmospheric track highlighted by Winwood's swirling keyboards. "Walking In The Wind" is a lovely, melodic popper, with a fine bottom groove from bassist Roscoe Gee. "Memories Of A Rock N Rolla" is a great tale co-authored by Winwood & Capaldi about an elderly rock star looking back upon his life, and "Love," the shortest piece from the album, is a little gem of it's own, featuring beautiful flute playing by the late, great Chris Wood.Traffic disbanded in 1974, shortly after the release of "When The Eagle Flies." Winwood & Capaldi would resurrect Traffic 20 years later with their 1994 comeback album, "Far From Home.Read more ›
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful By a listener on March 13, 2005
Format: Audio CD
This 1974 album was a return to roots for a world-tour-weary group. It's Traffic's most organic-sounding work: a sophisticated and powerful amalgam of their already unique rock - jazz - folk music blend.

the expanded group lineup from preceding "Low Spark" and "Shoot Out" LPs has been stripped down to a basic quartet: Steve Winwood on all guitars and keyboards, Chris Wood on saxes and flute, Jim Capaldi on drums (for the first time since "John Barleycorn") and percussion, and Jamaican-born bassist Rosko Gee. Several tracks here - e.g. 'Love' - include live recordings from a brief U.K. tour which preceded the Netherturkdonic [Steve Winwood's, in Gloucestershire] studio sessions, where they were then overdubbed for inclusion in the album. (this may also explain why Reebop Kwaku Baah is listed on the album's credits: he may have participated on the preceding tour's live tracks, but not the studio sessions.)

this long overdue domestic US 2003 CD re-issue features beautifully remastered audio (far superior to '80s-'90s CD import versions) from the original master tapes and faithful reproduction of the album cover and interior sleeve artwork, along with an insightful essay by critic Bill DeYoung on the making of the album.

The eagle of the album's title track is a metaphorical harbinger of devastation for 'civilized man', and of Mother Nature being restored to Her natural balance. Ominous warnings of "you're gonna be stepping from your Cadillac, and in a micro flash you're gonna feel the lash" - followed by "the rains will come, and wash away the scum so that all the little flowers can grow." Complex melodic figures and verse structure - a la Joni Mitchell's contemporary work - are sung and played effortlessly by Winwood.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Gordon Pfannenstiel on September 29, 2003
Format: Audio CD
This album's always been a bit of an enigma. I've always really liked it, but Traffic seemed over by the time it came out; I don't think they toured to promote it, and they did break up shortly after it came out. I remember playing it for a good friend several years later. He was a Traffic fan, but never heard the record. He loved it and couldn't believe he'd never heard it.
The record has a warm intimate feel to it. I always liked the production...fairly sparse and featuring Capaldi on drums for the first time since John Barlycorn. I thought his drumming on the whole record was just great, vastly improved over his previous thumpings. The record imparted the feeling that you were in the room while the songs were being performed...certainly couldn't say that about the previous two albums.
All in all, I thought this was a great swansong, and I'm very happy that it's received a long overdue reissue, with great sound and liner notes. Buy it!
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