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Gryphon - Midnight Mushrumps CD (album) cover

MIDNIGHT MUSHRUMPS

Gryphon

 

Prog Folk

3.61 | 138 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Andrea Cortese
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars In my opinion, "Midnight Mushrumps" stands as one of the most beautiful prog folk suites ever. I never thought the long composition is pointless. On the contrary, it clearly reveals a wide range of invention from all the band's members and it's probably correct to say it's the best Gryphon's track in all their cathalogue.

As the many fans know, the band's sound developed from pure acoustic-medieval tunes to more varied and electric fields, in a similar vein to other important english prog folk bands, as "Strawbs" for example.

At the time the second album was released, acoustic instruments still were the fundamental rule. Notwithstanding, all the compositions sounds exciting, captivating and varied as many couldn't even imagine. This is due, as I said before, to the long self titled album's opener (18,59 mns) which stands as the cornerstone of their discography. The long instrumental piece is composed by several changing parts and tempos, mixing medieval and liturgic flavour to classical parts and instruments as flute, oboe (the Gryphon's trademark), organ and guitar. Its rare beauty is almost indescribable but, please, don't excpect "rock" interludes. We're far from "Red Queen ..." or from "Raindance".

Side two of the album features more short and simple tunes as "Last Flash of Gaberdine Taylor" (3,57 mns), "Ethelion" (5,37 mns) and "Gulland Rock" (3,58 mns) that reminds me of medieval dances at the court of the king. Probably the first one is the best due to the most intriguing variations. "The Ploughboy's Dream" (3,03 mns) is the only sung piece here. It's delicate and fresh as the spring. "Dubbel Dutch" (5,21 mns) is somehow different, being based on more introvert feel thanks to (dramatic) organ and (baroque) harpsichord interludes. Acoustic guitar's and mandolin's passages in the second part are simply the icing on the cake.

This album is stunning. The final rating is a serious problem. Between 5 (side 1) and 4 (side 2). Highly recommended. A must for every aficionado of the english prog folk scene!

Let me point out that the site's general rating of the album doesn't make justice to its real value.

Andrea Cortese | 4/5 |

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