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Octopus - Restless Night CD (album) cover




Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.62 | 20 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Tom Ozric
Prog Reviewer
4 stars Being a huge fan of the wonderful band SPLIT ENZ (since their magnificent album 'True Colours', and I was only 8 years old then!), which in their 'classic' period line-up featured the great rhythm section of bassist Nigel Griggs and drummer Malcolm Green (both to be heard on this album, Restless Night), I later learnt that Griggs had been involved in many bands prior to joining the Enz - Octopus, The Cortinas, Carmen, and even Steve Hillage's band Khan, maybe only for short stints, but he was there. The only significant pre-Enz recorded work (that I know of) being from Octopus.

The album in its original form is rare and will cost mega-bucks, but Essex records re-issued it on vinyl, with an exciting gatefold cover (!) but little to no information. The music presented on this album is definately influenced by The Beatles, with an occasional proto-prog twist - colourful, energetic little songs that are really likeable. Opening with a fuzz-guitar driven song, 'The River', quite a simplistic tune, but the grooving rhythm really sets the mood. 'Summer' is very Beatles, down to the 'Fab Four' style harmony singing. 'Council Plans' introduces the first organ parts to be heard on the album, and is a quieter piece, more in touch with psychedelia than prog. The title cut, 'Restless Night', begins with a fuzzed-out, heavy, odd tempo riff, and changes rhythm again when the vocals start. Excellent riffs, progressions and organ playing to be found on this one. 'Thief' is a fast-paced rocker, complete with some nice rattling bass playing and cool riff.

'Queen and the Pauper' is an organ driven number, with a simple progression and cheerful rhythm, but some unusual key-changes to make it more interesting. 'I Say' is a light ballad, 'John's Rock' is a pub-rocker driven along with the boogie styled piano playing and rough singing from keyboardist John Cook. 'Rainchild' is back to Beatles territory, and album closer 'Tide', is the 'mini-epic' (5.40), starting out slow with a pleasant melody, then picking up pace by the time the mesmerising soft-toned organ solo plays through. The last section is almost symphonic (in progression and tempo anyway).

Not really complex prog-rock, but 'Restless Night' comes highly recommended for those that enjoy psychedelic, proto-prog and Beatles. Closer to 4 stars than 3 !! On a curious note, original drummer Brian Glasscock is the brother of the late, great John Glascock (they dropped an 'S' so it doesn't look bad??).

Tom Ozric | 4/5 |


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