ufoHe’s back and this week Self Made Man is delighting in the fact that rock is still being discovered – after all these years!

Our resident classic rock devotee delivers his views on his favourite genre and more right here every week.

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Discovering new music is great; discovering music that’s been around for years can be just as fun and equally rewarding.

A week ago, I popped into HMV and a few minutes later, came away with Fragile by Yes. I’ve owned Closer To The Edge for years and have always been aware of classic tracks such as Heart of the Sunrise and Roundabout and, from later albums, Wondrous Stories and Owner of a Lonely Heart.

But my knowledge of the band’s back catalogue is sketchy to say the least.

And while I haven’t suddenly gone all Prog, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed listening to Fragile, so much so in fact, that I’ll probably buy a couple more albums by Yes in the weeks ahead.

Happily, I’m not the only one acquainting myself with music released three or more decades ago.

A mate of mine, who’s in his mid-30s, recently told me how he’s fallen in love with Animals, the album Pink Floyd released in 1977 when punk was all the rage.

It’s not a hugely accessible listen, featuring three lengthy songs Dog, Pigs and Sheep sandwiched by Pigs On The Wing Parts 1 and 2 but I’ve always loved its dark, brooding tone and I’m not alone.

Steve has a vast, eclectic music collection, featuring everything from hip-hop to electronica.

Last week’s musical journey took him from Kerrang night at the Carling Academy to a first listen of Animals and it’s fair to say he enjoyed the latter experience much more than the former.

He’d  always liked Meddle, Wish You Were Here and Dark Side Of The Moon but for some reason, had never taken much notice of Animals.

Now he’s promised himself to catch up on the Pink Floyd material which has passed him by.

Steve’s catholic taste has always been impressive so I wasn’t too surprised by his revelations.

John’s announcement, however, blew me away. This mate is (a young-looking) 60 and I would doubt that our record collections have ever had too much in common.

That is until he discovered Rainbow and Foreigner (Prelude too, but that’s another story).

A friend of his who was into his classic rock, recently passed away and John not only inherited his collection but was also asked to arrange the funeral.

Knowing Rainbow and Foreigner were two of his favourite groups, John decided he owed it his late friend to listen to their music and choose some appropriate tracks for the service.

John not only did his mate proud, he’s been blown away by the music of Richie Blackmore and Mick Jones.

“Are Foreigner still going?,” he asked me. “I bet they sound great live.”

Now that’s a sentence I never thought I’d hear from this particular gentleman!

Ian Murtagh