Family - Family Entertainment CD (album) cover




Eclectic Prog

3.51 | 71 ratings

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3 stars This record is a nice example of what progressive rock was before it became what it is. A forward-looking slice of 60s pie, it is a set of songs that took the Beatle's lead without the affectations, a band who let their compositions expand and even flourish, keeping it all suspended with skill and professionalism. Clearly Family were moving away from Cream and Hendrix riff-rock impersonations and though their material was psychedelic, it was more thoughtfully organized and recorded than the average mushroom band.

We couldn't ask for a better opener in 'The Weaver's Answer', full of compelling melody and rock 'n roll power, an inspired moment. Even Roger Chapman's distracting vibrato works beautifully and features a great lyric hinting at a theatrical sound Peter Gabriel would later perfect, Jim King's sax and John Whitney's organ taking a solo. Whitney's acoustic guitar leads the pretty 'Observations From a Hill', the fife-rocking 'Hung Up Down' sounds like Fogerty gone a bit mad, Turko-Persian instrumental 'Summer 67' and mediocre 'How-Hi-The-Li'. The slightly odd Brian Wilson send-up 'From Past Archives' is good fun, 'Dim' and 'Processions' seem to reflect a penchant for American Bluegrass and Folk, and the gospel 'Emotions' to end.

Recommended? Only if you're interested in a brief period of very good music that would soon be trumped but never replaced by the movement that became Progressive Rock. On the whole, a healthy session and of note in prog development.

Atavachron | 3/5 |


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