Sounds  November 25, 1972

By Ray Telford


PATTO, FRESH from recent successes in the Western hemisphere with Joe Cocker and the Chris Stainton Band, played one of the most entertaining sets Iíve seen from any rock and roll band in a long time at the Marquee last week.

For the occasion the club was packed with the usual full complement of Patto freaks who were so obviously delighted at having their heroes return home. The bandís following appears to have grown considerably over the past six months and justifiably too, for when Patto hit a good night (and they donít run into a duff one too often), no one leaves the gig without having experienced a delightfully unique compilation of bizarrerie and plain good music.

For example, Mike Patto exudes a natural on stage madness which owes nothing to any of his contemporaries, but heís also a damn fine singer, who, in his many years on the road, has absorbed the elements or rock and roll, jazz and the blues, each of which has been rolled and pressed into a very personalised style.

Pattoís second front liner, whether intentional or not, is Ollie Halsall. He plays genuinely moving guitar which also represents the groupís overall instrumental approach. On such tightly knit songs as "Singing The Blues On Reds" he plays with an almost finnicky preciseness above Clive Griffithís lumpy bass patterns, while on his own "Peter Abraham" his playing gradually leads the rest of the band into wild electronic madness which culminates in a kind of controlled chaos before finally coming back to earth with the same surefootedness they took on. The Patto rhythm section of Clive Griffiths and drummer John Halsey, are similarly refreshingly original. Ė RAY TELFORD.


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