High Tide (band)

Last updated

High Tide
Origin England
Genres Progressive rock, psychedelic rock, heavy metal
Years active1969–1970
Labels Liberty
Associated acts The Misunderstood
Past membersTony Hill
Simon House
Peter Pavli
Roger Hadden

High Tide was a rock band formed in 1969 by Tony Hill (guitar and vocals), Simon House (violin and keyboards), Peter Pavli (bass guitar) and Roger Hadden (drums).

Rock music is a broad genre of popular music that originated as "rock and roll" in the United States in the early 1950s, and developed into a range of different styles in the 1960s and later, particularly in the United States and the United Kingdom. It has its roots in 1940s and 1950s rock and roll, a style which drew heavily from the genres of blues, rhythm and blues, and from country music. Rock music also drew strongly from a number of other genres such as electric blues and folk, and incorporated influences from jazz, classical and other musical styles. Musically, rock has centered on the electric guitar, usually as part of a rock group with electric bass, drums, and one or more singers. Usually, rock is song-based music usually with a 4/4 time signature using a verse–chorus form, but the genre has become extremely diverse. Like pop music, lyrics often stress romantic love but also address a wide variety of other themes that are frequently social or political.

Guitar Fretted string instrument

The guitar is a fretted musical instrument that usually has six strings. It is typically played with both hands by strumming or plucking the strings with either a guitar pick or the finger(s)/fingernails of one hand, while simultaneously fretting with the fingers of the other hand. The sound of the vibrating strings is projected either acoustically, by means of the hollow chamber of the guitar, or through an electrical amplifier and a speaker.

Singing act of producing musical sounds with the voice

Singing is the act of producing musical sounds with the voice and augments regular speech by the use of sustained tonality, rhythm, and a variety of vocal techniques. A person who sings is called a singer or vocalist. Singers perform music that can be sung with or without accompaniment by musical instruments. Singing is often done in an ensemble of musicians, such as a choir of singers or a band of instrumentalists. Singers may perform as soloists or accompanied by anything from a single instrument up to a symphony orchestra or big band. Different singing styles include art music such as opera and Chinese opera, Indian music and religious music styles such as gospel, traditional music styles, world music, jazz, blues, gazal and popular music styles such as pop, rock, electronic dance music and filmi.



Allmusic author, Wilson Neate, stated this of the group, "High Tide had the muscularity of a no-nonsense proto-metal band, but they also ventured into prog territory with changing time signatures and tempos, soft-hard dynamics, multi-part arrangements, and even some ornate faux-Baroque interludes". [1]

High Tide made their first recordings as the backing band on Denny Gerrard's album Sinister Morning. [2] Gerrard returned the favor by producing their first album, Sea Shanties , which was released in October 1969. Though it met with a scathing review in Melody Maker , [2] reviews in the underground press were universally positive, and sales were just enough to convince Liberty to give the green light to a second album. [3]

<i>Sea Shanties</i> (High Tide album) 1969 studio album by High Tide

Sea Shanties is the debut album of rock band High Tide. It was one of the first albums to use violin as a rock instrument. The cover artwork was drawn by Paul Whitehead.

<i>Melody Maker</i> historical British weekly pop/rock music newspaper  (1926-2000)

Melody Maker was a British weekly music magazine, one of the world's earliest music weeklies, and—according to its publisher IPC Media—the earliest. It was founded in 1926, largely as a magazine for dance band musicians, by Leicester-born composer, publisher Lawrence Wright; the first editor was Edgar Jackson. In 2000 it was merged into "long-standing rival" New Musical Express.

This second album, High Tide , was released the following year. A third album was being recorded in 1970, but Roger Hadden, who had been suffering from chronic mental instability and depression since before joining High Tide, had a mental breakdown and was hospitalized before the album could be finished. [2] Unable to continue without Hadden, the group split up.

<i>High Tide</i> (album) 1970 studio album by High Tide

High Tide is the second album by High Tide. The album is slightly less heavy, with folk-influences within the band's sound. Though guitarist Tony Hill would later record with a new band under the High Tide banner, as well as releasing posthumous compilations of demos, this was the last proper album by the original group.

During the late 1970s, Hill and House recorded Interesting Times as a duo, [2] taking turns playing bass and using a drum machine to replace Roger Hadden. The album featured heavy use of synthesizers, which to an extent supplanted the use of House's violin. The album was originally released as a mail order cassette, and issued on vinyl and CD in 1989 and 1990. [4]

Drum machine electronic musical instrument designed to imitate the sound of drums or other percussion instruments

A drum machine is an electronic musical instrument that creates percussion. Drum machines may imitate drum kits or other percussion instruments, or produce unique sounds. Most modern drum machines allow users to program their own rhythms. Drum machines may create sounds using analog synthesis or play prerecorded samples.

Any possibilities of further recordings from this semi-reunion were dissolved when House rejoined Hawkwind in 1990. However, under the encouragement of drummer Drachen Theaker, [2] Hill pushed out no less than five albums under the High Tide banner by the end of the following year, starting with two discs of retrospective material, and then with three albums recorded by an entirely new band.

Hawkwind English rock band

Hawkwind are an English rock band and one of the earliest space rock groups. Formed in November 1969, Hawkwind have gone through many incarnations and they have incorporated different styles into their music, including hard rock, progressive rock and psychedelic rock. They are also regarded as an influential proto-punk band. Their lyrics favour urban and science fiction themes.

The first retrospective release, Precious Cargo, consists of sessions recorded in 1970 by the original group, but their exact nature is not specified. It has been theorized, however, that they are the rehearsal sessions for their unfinished third album. [4] One song, "The Great Universal Protection Racket"(mislabeled on the album as "Exploration"), had been recorded for Sea Shanties but went unreleased at the time due to space constraints. [3] None of the other six songs were used in any earlier recordings.

The second retrospective album, The Flood, is a collection of demos of various origins. It includes four demos recorded by the original High Tide shortly before their breakup, six demos recorded in 1971 and 1976 by Tony Hill and Peter Pavli with other musicians, and a Peter Pavli solo demo from 1979.

The new band which recorded the remaining High Tide albums consisted of Tony Hill (guitars and bass), Dave Tomlin (violin and bass), and Drachen Theaker (drums), though various guest musicians also contributed, included a few appearances by Peter Pavli and Simon House. Eschewing the tight, complex compositions which were the staple of the original High Tide, the new band's albums Ancient Gates and The Reason of Success consisted almost solely of lengthy improvised performances with little to no compositional basis. Between these two albums was released A Fierce Nature. Tony Hill wrote all the songs on A Fierce Nature and played everything but the drums.

A two disc compilation album, Open Season, was released in 2000. However, with the exceptions of a new Tony Hill solo track, a new Peter Pavli solo track, and a short track from Ancient Gates, the content was drawn entirely from The Flood and The Reason of Success.

The tracks "Futilist's Lament" and "Blankman Cries Again" are on the United Artists Records 2004 sampler All Good Clean Fun CD re-package (Liberty 8660902), but High Tide did not appear on the original 1971 LP.


Studio Albums


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  1. Allmusic.com
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 Shaw, Adrian. (2000) "Tony Hill interview". Perfect Sound Forever magazine.
  3. 1 2 Powell, Mark (2006). "High Tide - Sea Shanties". In Sea Shanties (pp.8-10) [CD booklet]. London: Eclectic Entertainment Ltd.
  4. 1 2 Joynson, Vernon (1995). The Tapestry of Delights Archived 25 August 2011 at the Wayback Machine . London: Borderline Books.