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The Doors - Full Circle CD (album) cover

FULL CIRCLE

The Doors

 

Proto-Prog

2.33 | 57 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Guillermo
Prog Reviewer
3 stars This album, like all the others from The Doors, brings me a lot of memories...

In mid 1972 one of my brothers (a big Doors`Fan) and me were friends of one of the families who lived in the same neighborhood. Our friends had at that time a very good collection of Rock albums. So, when this album was released, they bought it first, the Mexican edition, and we listened to it and particularly I liked it a lot. In September 1972 I went to a record shop with my father and I saw the Import Copy (made in the U.S.) and I asked my father to bought it. He did it. This first U.S. edition had the bonus of a zoetrope, not longer available in later editions. Unfortunately, I was 7 years old then, and my father took the zoetrope and put it inside another record of his great collection of records (which I can`t remember which it was), so the zoetrope`s "existence" remains in mystery since then! (I still can`t find it!).

The album remained in our collection until one day my brother lent it along with several Doors`albums to a fellow employee in his job and this man stole it in the early eighties! So, with this album being out of print in the U.S. since the mid seventies, it was until 1982 when I saw it again in a record shop, made in Germany, that I bought it again, along with "Other Voices". This German Edition is very good in sound and cover quality, but it didn`t include the zoetrope anymore!

Now, about the album:

After the release of the "Other Voices" album, The Doors toured again, this time recruiting additional musicians (Jack Conrad and Bobby Ray), having some success and good reviews, but without the same success as years before. So, they recorded this album, producing it themselves (without long time recording engineer / co-producer Bruce Botnick) in Los Angeles. After the release of this album, in July 1972, they toured again until mid September 1972, when they played a concert in Los Angeles, which was their last concert as a band. Then, in late 1972, they went to London looking for a new singer, but it seems that Manzarek didn`t think that it was a good idea and decided to leave the band: "I thought that it was the time to close The Doors". It seems that the title (suggested by Manzarek) and cover design of this album showed that at least for Manzarek, "it wasn`t right for the band to play without Jim anymore", so the title was like a prediction for their future, like an unofficial statement of their split which was confirmed in early 1973. In London, Krieger and Densmore recruited new musicians and tried again as "The Butts Band", releasing two albums, without much success, until their split in 1975. Manzarek started a solo career. The Trio worked again to provide the music for Morrison`s pre-recorded poetry for the "American Prayer" album, which was released in late 1978.

It seems that for "Full Circle" the band wanted a more "light" approach to the music style, so this album is a bit more "commercial" in sound in comparison to "Other Voices".

Song by song:

"Get Up and Dance": released as a single in the U.K., with a B-side song called "Tree Trunks" which is now a "rarity" only available in Bootlegs. "Get Up and Dance" is a commercial song, sung by Manzarek, with female backing singers.

"4 Billion Souls": a song composed and sung by Krieger with very good organ / guitar melodies and arrangements.

"Verdilac": a good Jazz-Rock song with good sax by Charles Lloyd. A "mysterious" song in sound and in title (Verdilac? What does it mean?).

"Hardwood Floor": another good song by Krieger but sung by Manzarek with the female backing singers, and good harmonica solo by Krieger. Densmore plays good drums.

"Good Rockin`": an old Rock and Roll song cover.

"The Mosquito": a funny song with "spanish lyrics" sung by Krieger. The main thing in this song is a very good instrumental section, showing very well the talent of each musician, including bass player Leland Sklar (a very known session musician who has played and recorded with a lot of musicians, including the underrated Phil Collins).

"The Piano Bird": the best song in this album, composed by Densmore with Jack Conrad who plays rhythm guitar in this song. Again, it has a very good instrumental section with very good contributions by all the musicians, particularly Manzarek in the electric piano, Densmore in the drums, and a very good flute played by Charles Lloyd. Again, the Jazz-Rock / Latin Music influences shine in this song. One of the best songs they recorded as Trio, IMO.

"It Slipped my Mind": composed and sung by Krieger, with very good guitars by him.

"The Peking King and the New York Queen": composed and sung by Manzarek, with very good keyboards arrangements. It also has the female backing singers. The lyrics are about peace between West and East, a theme very common in those years.

The recording and production of this album is better than in "Other Voices", IMO. The band sounds better, like they gained more confidence as a Trio. Krieger sang much better than in "Other Voices". Unfortuately, this album was even less successful that "Other Voices", and maybe it was one of the reasons to split the band. But, IMO, the band "closed The Doors" with a very good album.

In www.youtube.com there are some videos of The Doors playing live for the "Beat Club" T.V. programme in Germany, in 3- May-1972. They played "In the Eye of the Sun", "Ships w/ Sails", "Tightrope Ride" and "I`m Horny , I`m Stoned" from the "Other Voices" album, plus "Verdilac" (titled "Vertilac" in that website) from this album, and "Love Me Two Times", with Jack Conrad (bass) and Bobby Ray (guitar, percussion, vocals). These videos show that the band was very good playing the music, but the vocals are not very good, IMO. Manzarek sings well most of the time, but Krieger`s vocals are not very well. Maybe the problems with the vocals were the main problems after Morrison died, so they decided to split the band.

Guillermo | 3/5 |

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