The first side of this 1977 release is given over to Buddy Rich and his Big Band, and I won't get into that. The importance of this edition is of course the presence of the second side's Philip Catherine, the great Belgian guitarist whose works are mandatory for the fusion fan. His two entries here are India and Les Sept Boules de Cristal, a track which appeared in the stunning, gorgeous opus 1979 Sleep My Love, one of my all-time favourite Euro-fusion records, maintaining a balance of meditative and ethereal beauty from beginning to the closing: an interpretation of an Arnold Schoenberg melody, which completely knocked me out when I first heard it. Those were the days, right... The other track from him, India, I haven't located yet where it's from originally though I'm sure it's somewhere, not that I have any desire to hear the original album version as it's one of those drony Eastern songs that remains stuck in one chord (and it's E I think to boot, the easiest of all on the guitar). The album closes out with the United Jazz etc. (also mandatory listening for fusionauts) and our old hero Wolfgang Dauner playing the unfortunately chosen Bebop Rock (a Dauner composition). But what a lineup-- with Eberhard Weber on bass, Albert Mangelsdorff, Ian Carr (Nucleus!), Volker Kriegel, and Charlie again on sax, you have a real European all-star band to close it out.
Who could ever forget the image of Tournesol surrounded by ball lightning? I enjoyed rereading all the Tintins last summer with my sons, who became so briefly obsessed with his adventures we were forced to get every book in the series including the awful first one from Russia which I never finished and the incomplete last one which can be found online. From the perspective of adulthood, we can see there is still nothing to compare with these adventures in terms of how thrilling they can be for a boy, with the perfect combination of exotic locales, courage, faithfulness to his friends and dog, and a lot of slapstick humour thrown in.