CD REVIEW – Dust of Time: An Anthology (1969 – 2021)

This is, first off, a comprehensive 6 CD boxed set gathering together 81 tracks of musical highlights from over 50 years of the legendary Hawkwind which is the first to gather together all eras of the band’s history.

But let’s just remind ourselves: Hawkwind emerged back in the 1970’s, having formed in the Notting Hill area of London in 1969. Led by visionary leader Dave Brock, in summary, Hawkwind found their own unique niche within the genres of psychedelic rock, hard rock and art rock. Signing to Liberty/United Artists in 1970, Hawkwind’s early years were in so-called Space Rock with a series of classic albums such as ‘X In Search Of Space’, ‘Doremi Fasol Latido’, ‘Space Ritual’ and ‘Hall Of The Mountain Grill’, during which time numerous line-ups changed. And yes, it was THAT 1972 hit single ‘Silver Machine’, together with their renowned, imaginative stage shows that got them embedded into the consciousness of rock audiences. If 1975’s ‘Warrior On The Edge Of Time’ marked the end of one era, the latter half of the ‘70s saw them transform into a more streamlined, art rock outfit, with vocalist and lyricist Robert Calvert as front man. The four albums released over this period saw them embrace a new wave of rock and the 1980s and 1990s saw Hawkwind embraced by followers of Heavy Metal and even Acid House audiences.

But make no mistake, this band were leaders, not followers. For those of us who only know Silver Machine, of for others like me who have a favourite epoch (Quark, Strangeness and Charm), the variety, the scope, the progressive Hawkwind deserve recognition. This album recognises that. So we enjoy ‘Dust Of Time’, a celebratory release that celebrates Hawkwind’s 50+ year career and spans 77 tracks of musical legacy from every era, and includes a lavishly illustrated book with new essay and exclusive interview with Dave Brock.

Brock’s early solo effort ‘Bring it On Home’ opens the set, a cover of the Sonny Boy Williamson II blues number gets the ball rolling. The first psychedelic album is also represented by ‘Hurry On Sundown’, a mesmerising instrumental ‘Be Yourself’ and ‘Mirror Of Illusion’ before the Hawks establish themselves with the second album In Search Of Space and the still classic ‘Master Of The Universe’ with its classic Hawkwind drone and ‘You Shouldn’t Do That’ with it’s crazy Nik Turner saxophone. Disc Two covers the period from Doremi Fasol Latido through to Warrior On The Edge Of Time or “The Lemmy Years”. Expect heavy basslines and more manic sax and a second instalment that closes with the trippy ‘Spiral Galaxy 24968’ in full electronic freak out mode. Founder member Nik Turner’s final outing Astounding Sounds, Amazing Music is represented by the sinister ‘Steppenwolf’, ‘Chronoglide Skyway’, the full on ’Kerb Crawler’ and ‘Back On The Streets’ goes Quo. Then comes my fave era of Quark, Strangeness And Charm.  25 Years On was released under the Hawklords banner due to legal issues over the ownership of the “Hawkwind” name in 1978 – I didn’t know that. But the Hawklords are Hawkwind in all but name – take a listen. In the ’80’s the new wave influences are evident, and so many band changes seem to take them down a commercial route. This is where the completist might observe the whistle stop track selection covering fifteen albums within only twelve tracks.

So let me just leave you with this question and my answer…….is this album for the completist or the curious? I would venture to suggest that the band has such an intensely loyal following, those chaps and chappesses are likely to possess most of the band’s output already. And they may quibble about this or that in this anthology. Like they did with other compilations before! But imho this is an excellent starting point for those new to the band, or those who only ever observed them from a distance, their Genesis, Yes or Floyd albums under their arms.

Tracklisting:

Disc One

  1. Bring It On Home (Dave Brock 1968)
  2. Sweet Mistress Of Pain (Hawkwind Zoo 1969)
  3. Hurry On Sundown (Mono Single Version)
  4. Be Yourself (“All Good Clean Fun” Edit)
  5. Mirror Of Illusion
  6. Master Of The Universe
  7. You Shouldn’t Do That
  8. Silver Machine
  9. Seven By Seven (Single Version)
  10. Born To Go (Live) (Greasy Truckers Party Version)
  11. Down Through The Night (Live) (“Space Ritual” Version)
  12. Urban Guerrilla
  13. Shot Down In The Night (Single Version)
  14. Lighthouse
  15. Levitation
  16. Motorway City
  17. Who’s Gonna Win The War (Single Version)
  18. Dust Of Time
  19. Running Through My Back Brain (Messages) (Live 1980)
  20. Angels Of Death (Alternate Single Version)
  21. Rocky Paths
  22. Virgin Of The World
  23. Angel Voices
  24. Nuclear Drive
  25. Looking In The Future
  26. Choose Your Masques
  27. Arrival In Utopia
  28. Solitary Mind Games
  29. Brainstorm
  30. Space Is Deep
  31. The Watcher
  32. Orgone Accumulator
  33. The Psychedelic Warlords (Disappear In
  34. Smoke)
  35. Wind Of Change
  36. Paradox (Single Version)
  37. It’s So Easy
  38. Assault And Battery/The Golden Void
  39. Magnu
  40. Spiral Galaxy 24968
  41. Night Of The Hawks
  42. Dragons And Fables
  43. Needle Gun
  44. Zarozinia
  45. Moonglum (Live)
  46. Magnu/Dreamworker Of Time (BBC Session
  47. 1986)
  48. Cajun Jinx
  49. The War I Survived
  50. Heads
  51. Tides (BBC Radio One “In Concert” 1988)
  52. Wastelands Of Sleep (Bbc Radio One “In
  53. Concert” 1988)
  54. Wings
  55. Ship Of Dreams
  56. Treadmill
  57. L.S.D
  58. Steppenwolf
  59. Chronoglide Skyway
  60. Kerb Crawler (Single Version)
  61. Back On The Streets
  62. Spirit Of The Age
  63. Quark, Strangeness And Charm
  64. Hassan I Sahba
  65. Psi Power (Single Version)
  66. The Only Ones (Non-Cross Faded Mix)
  67. 25 Years (Single Version)
  68. The Age Of The Microman (Live)
  69. Robot
  70. High Rise
  71. Death Trap (Single Version)
  72. Over The Top
  73. Disc Six
  74. Space Is Their Palestine
  75. Right To Decide
  76. Alien I Am
  77. Sputnik Stan
  78. Love In Space (Studio Version)
  79. Take Me To Your Leader
  80. The Hills Have Ears
  81. Synchronised Blue
  82. A Solitary Man
  83. Have You Seen Them
  84. All Aboard The Skylark
  85. Strange Encounters

Internet

http://www.hawkwind.com/

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