Canto

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The very short-lived Canto are mostly of note for including guitarist Steve Howe in their ranks, shortly before he joined Yes and just after he left the psychedelic group Tomorrow. The somewhat complicated…
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The very short-lived Canto are mostly of note for including guitarist Steve Howe in their ranks, shortly before he joined Yes and just after he left the psychedelic group Tomorrow. The somewhat complicated story behind their formation is rooted in the formation of Deep Purple, which started out as a project called Roundabout. Drummer Bobby Clarke played with guitarist Ritchie Blackmore, organist Jon Lord, and bassist Nick Simper for a while in Roundabout, but Clarke left after three months, the remaining musicians forming Deep Purple. Clarke, in the meantime, teamed up with singer/bassist Dave Curtiss (who Clarke had originally recommended as the vocalist for Roundabout) and singer/guitarist Clive Muldoon. They then recruited Steve Howe, who was at loose ends after the dissolution of Tomorrow. Muldoon left Canto briefly, and it was as a three-piece that Canto recorded four demos in October 1968. These were average late-psych/early-progressive pieces with ambitious, unpredictable song structures, somewhat like the work of Tomorrow, but lacking in strong melodic ideas. Muldoon joined shortly after the demos were made, and the quartet changed their name to Bodast, which recorded ten demos in a more prog-rock style for MGM (these demos were eventually released long after Bodast split in mid-1969). All four of the Canto demos were finally released on the 2000 Bodast CD reissue Spectral Nether Street.