Tuesday, May 28, 2024

This July – Focus 12 Release

Legendary Dutch band Focus has a brand-new studio album, Focus 12, due from Spirit of Unicorn Music from the 5th of July.

Founded by Thijs van Leer, Focus has been at the forefront of the progressive music movement since 1969, yet still continue to deliver engaging, innovative and skillfully crafted music.  Focus 12 is said to exemplify this and prove why they are still a firm fan favourite, the world over.

Still headed by Thijs van Leer, on flute, organ, piano, and synthesisers, with longtime drummer Pierre van der Linden, Focus 12, also features Menno Gootjes on guitars, piano, synthesisers and Udo Pannekeet on bass, synthesisers, programming, and Focus 12 was recorded at the world-renowned Wisseloord Studios, in the band’s native country, of the Netherlands. 

For van Leer (75) and van der Linden (78), age is nothing more than a number.  Both continue to contribute to Focus with a passion.  Apparently, van Leer, who has written the majority of the new album, rises at 4.30am every day in order to work on his compositions. Whilst the album has been described as boasting some of van der Linden’s “greatest and most energetic drum sequences to date”.

A first for Focus, the album features a completely improvised piece that was captured as it spontaneously took place in the studio, during the recording process.  Thus, proving that more than 50 years on, the band are still excited by undertaking something new and different.

The album also finds the younger guard taking the audio reins for the first time, with Focus 12 produced by band membersPannekeet and Gootjes, who also contribute two compositions to the album.

“How beautiful life can be when a band plays so easily and so together,” the keyboard player commented, adding, “Thanks Pierre, Udo and Menno for so much musical passion!”

Focus 12 features the tracks: ‘Fjord Focus’, ‘Focus 13’, ‘Béla’, ‘Meta Indefinita’, ‘All Aboard’, ‘Born To Be You, Nura’, ‘Bowie’, ‘Positano’ and ‘Gaia’, andcontinues their long association with legendary artist Roger Dean whose work graces the front cover and packaging, with its vinyl edition also featuring a gatefold sleeve.

Thijs van Leer concluded “After all these years, Focus is in the here and now; the triumph of survival!

Continuing to be one of the hardest working rock bands on the planet, Focus regularly tour the globe perfroming live.  This July, they undertake a string of live dates across the USA and Canada, as part of Asia’s Heat Of The Moment Tour.

Focus 12 will be available on CD, vinyl and all good streaming services and can be ordered by clicking here.

Paul H Birch
Paul H Birch
RAMzine Senior Writer - Writer of fiction, faction and fact, has edited several newsstand magazines. He declares himself a hack for hire but refuses to compromise on the subject of music.

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