Curved Air’s implosion circa 1976, after their eighth album Airborne, followed so many earlier line-up changes and temporary splits that many in the media didn’t quite realise they’d called it quits. It was eight years before they used the name again, and figurehead vocalist Sonja Kristina was not minded to make this solo debut until the middle of that hiatus, in 1980.
Sonja Kristina: Sonja Kristina
A rare solo sojourn for a fabled prog frontwoman.
The album saw her embracing a range of influences, some of them as time-locked as so many 80s musings now sound. But she remained a convincing rock frontwoman, and shows herself ahead of the curve on tracks like Street Run, The Comforter and a cover of Spirit’s Mr Skin that give the pop-punk of Hazel O’Connor and Toyah a run for their money. St Tropez is even more of a high octane thrash.
While Kristina is well up to that task, the record is at its most inviting, and relevant to today, when she moves into the slow lane for the rustic reflections of Colder Than A Rose In Snow and Full Time Woman.
She would soon show herself more comfortable in a band setting again, so this set didn’t announce the solo preeminence it might have done, and yet this dalliance is not without its appealing moments.