Robin Gibb, who along with brothers Maurice and Barry comprised The Bee Gees, was one of the more heralded figures in pop music throughout the 1970s and early ‘80s. The Bee Gees had an uninterrupted string of hits during the height of the disco era, but before catapulting to international stardom, Robin made some solo recordings as a teenager. Those efforts are the focus of three-disc set “Saved By the Bell.”
Disc 1 features his 1970 solo debut “Robin’s Reign,” with the 11-track original platter augmented by nine bonus tracks. “Saved By the Bell” was a modest hit in the United Kingdom and Europe and tunes like “Give Me a Smile” and “Weekend” are the highlights here, with “One Million Years” and “Hudson’s Fallen Wind” the cream of the bonus track crop.
Disc 2 is the real find for hardcore Gibb fans. It includes the famously unfinished “Sing Slowly Sisters” album. It’s mythology is perhaps a bit more interesting than the music itself, though the 20-track platter is highlighted by “Sing Slowly Sisters,” “Everything Is How You See Me,” “Avalanche” and “All’s Well That Ends Well.”
Disc 3 is the least effective part of the collection. Dubbed “Robin’s Rarities,” it features 23 alternate takes, demos, BBC sessions and unissued songs. While many of these tunes fail to register, make time for keepers “Alexandria Good Time,” “Janice” and “Moon Anthem.”
Robin Gibb died in 2012 at age 62 and this is a fitting tribute to the early part of his career. (Jeffrey Sisk)