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Affinity

English jazz-rock group Affinity released only one album and one single during their brief existence, and though their work is obscure, it remains an important document of the type of crossover between psychedelic rock and progressive styles they and many other bands of their ilk were exploring in the early '70s. The band remains a favorite for fans of deeply buried psychedelic artifacts, and though their self-titled 1970 album was the only material they released while active, multiple collections have been pieced together from their archives. In 2021, a remastered and expanded version of the album released by Cherry Red Records included four discs worth of live performances and rarities. Affinity formed gradually throughout the late '60s, growing out of a jazz trio comprised of University of Sussex science students Lynton Naiff on keyboards, Nick Nicholas on upright bass and Grant Serpell on drums. Nicholas was replaced by Mo Foster early on. The band reached their highest form with the addition of guitarist Mike Jupp and vocalist Linda Hoyle, whose blues-tinged vocals added character to the band's blend of jazz virtuosity and psychedelic exploration. Affinity signed on with Vertigo for the release of their self-titled 1970 album. The album included adventurous reinterpretations of songs by Bob Dylan and the Everly Brothers, and one song had a brass arrangement composed by Led Zeppelin's John Paul Jones. The record was well-received by critics and the band played often, but they broke up shortly after the albums' release and went on to different musical pursuits. In the decades that followed, the band became one of many obscure progressive acts whose albums were sought after by collectors. The Affinity vaults were mined for any unreleased material, and various collections of instrumentals, live performances, and other rarities were released over the years.
© Jon "Mojo" Mills & Fred Thomas /TiVo

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