"Enjoying a Velvet Afternoon" - The debut solo album by John Hackett reviewed by Alan Hewitt.

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The real title for this album should be "About Bloody Time!" but Velvet Afternoon will do quite nicely, thank you very much!

Many Steve Hackett fans have wondered what his brother Johns' work would sound like. A sample was given by the delightful Sketches Of Satie album back in 2000. However, that was the Brothers Hackett interpreting another musicians' work.

What we have here is a collection of original compositions written by John himself over the last twenty or so years and which give is a wonderful showcase of the man's talent both as a composer and a performer. Opening with the delightful Pastures Green we are drawn into a magical world of wonderfully lush music which covers a great any styles; classically - tinged as in Minuet and Allegro Molto Moderato; to the Rag Time of Oily Rag and the delightful miniature portraits of two of John's children in the delightfully titled: Sausage Boy and Sophie's Lullaby.

Accompanying John on piano is the equally talented Sally Goodworth and the combination of piano and flute is by turns mesmerising and enchanting. An album that will delight fans of the Hackett brothers and indeed lovers of well crafted and exquisitely played music - bravo, maestro!

Velvet Afternoon Hacktrax Records HTRX001.