JAMES GANG NEW YORK ACADEMY OF MUSIC REVIEW
RECORD & RADIO MIRROR, MARCH 2, 1974
By Barry Taylor (submitted by Damian Phelan)
Back to the Academy on Sunday Night, the new James Gang with guitarist Tommy Bolin put on a high energy display, drawing most of their material from the latest album Gang Bang. Lead singer Roy Kenner has a sure strong voice, but his between song raps that scolded the audience for not getting out of their seats and dancing in the aisles was idiotic and totally uncalled for especially in the uptight Academy Of Music.
The ushers constantly look like they fear the revolution that’s about to erupt at any second. Otherwise the James Gang showed what is perhaps their tightest combination yet; Jim Fox still mixes jazz and rock drumming with technical flair while bassist Dale Peters works off him like a well oiled machine.
Bolin (who survived the 60’s practically unrecognized with the under-rated group, Zephyr) earned kudos only after his work on Billy Cobham’s Spectrum album. He fits into the James Gang like a hand in a glove. Their music always focused on the pyrotechnics of their guitarists — from Joe Walsh to Domenic Troiano, and Bolin could be the best one yet. He has a fluent style which commands your attention, and yet doesn’t detract from Fox and Peters.
His use of electronic gadgets, which at times gave the guitar a synthesised effect was done with taste.