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The Moody Blues - To Our Children's Children's Children CD (album) cover

TO OUR CHILDREN'S CHILDREN'S CHILDREN

The Moody Blues

 

Crossover Prog

4.04 | 259 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

James Lee
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars More consistent than "Threshold", more mature and individual than "Lost Chord", this is the best MOODY BLUES album yet (well, "Days" is hard to beat, but it wasn't completely a band project). While the democratic nature of the band means that every member gets a couple of song credits, everything here holds together in style and theme. What is the theme? It's really up to the listener to decide; lyrics of birth, death, eternity, loneliness, the cosmos, and the earth are suspended by soundscapes based on Pinder's Mellotron and the band's trademark vocals. The 60s pop rock influence is still present, but the production thickly blends all the elements into a textural soup- and unlike the orchestral soundtrack feel of "Day of Future Passed" and the brittle desperation that would link all of "Seventh Sojourn", this dense sound for once truly compliments the band.

The journey begins in the crashing and chanting of the first few minutes of "Higher and Higher", which transforms into surprisingly energetic acid rock and the requistite spoken poetry. The percussion work on this song, and the album as a whole, is some of the most impressive I've heard from Graeme Edge. The chaos fades into the more folk- sounding "Eyes of a Child", which in turn leads to the bouncy, childlike "Floating"- a Ray Thomas song if there ever was one. "Eyes of a Child pt.2" takes the song in a much different direction, a harder rocking WHO meets JEFFERSON AIRPLANE feel. "I Never Thought I'd Live to be A Hundred" is a classic Hayward acoustic snippet, and "Beyond" is that rarest of MOODY BLUES songs, an instrumental with rhythm. Sometimes. It seems to have a hard time deciding where to go, but it does interesting things along the way. "Out and In" and "Gypsy" are two different cosmic rockers; the first is smooth and tender, the second more driving in tone but with mournful interstellar lyrics. Ray Thomas is the next to tackle the trippy trend on "Eternity Road", a mysterious vision perfectly illustrated by the updated psychedelia of the music. "Candle of Life" is more emotive, a plea for universal amity amidst dramatic piano and symphonic mellotron surges. On this song especially, it doesn't sound like they miss the London Festival Orchestra at all; the sound is as deep and full, and more interesting. On "Sun Is Shining", it's Pinder's turn for a psychedelic jam, so he enlists a sitar and some "Strawberry Fields" mellotron swoops and discusses reincarnation from an astral perspective. Justin jumps back in with the reprise "I Never Thought I'd Live to be a Million" in order to set the stage for the album's closing statement,"Watching and Waiting". Co-authored by the bands' most distinctive writers, Hayward and Thomas produce a gentle ballad of friendship and peace that lets the album drift away into the distance.

Fans of the Jon Anderson school of abstract mysticism should love this album- the band has matured but retained the hippie sprituality trinity: Universal Love, The Cosmos, and Mother Earth. The music has matured as well; though "Days" remains a masterpiece, the band is no longer that same 60s pop band with psychedelic pretensions. There is a distinctive tone which saturates this album, and I do mean 'saturates'- this is one long misty river of sound where separating individual songs is difficult, and individual instruments even more so. As with Alan Parson's similar approach during his time producing PINK FLOYD, you may find yourself wishing for more clarity; luckily, the MOODY BLUES sound is inherently simpler and lighter, but no less effective in transporting the listener's consciousness.

James Lee | 4/5 |

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