Skip to main content

John Cale & Terry Riley: Church Of Anthrax

Mini-masterpiece from the Chas ‘n’ Dave of the avant-garde.

A full feature on minimalist auteur Terry Riley is long overdue in this esteemed digest, and as

A fractious exercise in Cale extracting the funk from Riley’s circular synth/sax drones – and succeeding – finds Miles Davis, Can and Pierre Henry in the mix of the title track’s skewed groove, and on the piano-driven The Hall Of Mirrors In The Palace Of Versailles. On what was side two, The Soul Of Patrick Lee clears the static with some sweet folk-pop much more in line with Cale’s solo debut Vintage Violence. Ides Of March then clatters into earshot like a Vince Guaraldi Peanuts warm-up. Still plumbing a Blue Note depth but with an almost Chas ‘n’ Dave jauntiness that tickles the funnybone Les Dawson could reach, the last furrow is The Protégé, a rockier, three-minute reprise of Ides…, but with equal hypnotic prowess. Unlike its foreboding title, Church Of Anthrax brought colours from Riley’s Rainbow and sunshine from the Underground. They fell out over Cale’s painstaking mixing regime, but this survives as a one-off mini masterpiece

Jo is a journalist, podcaster, event host and music industry lecturer with 23 years in music magazines since joining Kerrang! as office manager in 1999. But before that Jo had 10 years as a London-based gig promoter and DJ, also working in various vintage record shops and for the UK arm of the Sub Pop label as a warehouse and press assistant. Jo's had tea with Robert Fripp, touched Ian Anderson's favourite flute (!), asked Suzi Quatro what one wears under a leather catsuit, and invented several ridiculous editorial ideas such as the regular celebrity cooking column for Prog, Supper's Ready. After being Deputy Editor for Prog for five years and Managing Editor of Classic Rock for three, Jo is now Associate Editor of Prog, where she's been since its inception in 2009, and a regular contributor to Classic Rock. She continues to spread the experimental and psychedelic music-based word amid unsuspecting students at BIMM Institute London, hoping to inspire the next gen of rock, metal, prog and indie creators and appreciators.