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Robert Wyatt - Ruth is Stranger Than Richard CD (album) cover

RUTH IS STRANGER THAN RICHARD

Robert Wyatt

 

Canterbury Scene

3.48 | 82 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
3 stars 3.5 stars. Wyatt assembled an all-star cast for this one including John Greaves on bass for one track. Bill MacCormick(MATCHING MOLE, QUIET SUN) would play bass on the other tracks. Drums by Laurie Allan (GONG), guitar and synths by Brian Eno, piano by Fred Frith(HENRY COW), sax and clarinet by Gary Windo (MATCHING MOLE), trumpet by Mongezi Feza(HENRY COW) and sax by Nisar Ahmad Khan round out the lineup. Wyatt would play keys, piano, drums and of course vocals. Wyatt would produce all the songs except Sonia which was produced by Nick Mason(PINK FLOYD). Ok, enough name dropping. For me this doesn't measure up to his first two solo albums, although to his credit they are all very different from one another, so it's more a matter of taste I believe than that one is better than the other.There are two songs on here I love very much "Solar Flares" and "Team Spirit". The rest is hit and miss for me.

"Muddy Mouse(a)" and "Muddy Mouse(b)" are both short piano / vocal tracks written by Wyatt and Frith. "Solar Flares" features light drums, keys, bass and clarinet. Vocal melodies join in on this catchy but restrained number. "Black Notes And 1 White Note" features dual sax melodies that are almost dissonant as other instruments play in the background including Eno on synths and guitar. Good tune. "Muddy Mouse (c)" which in turn leads to "Muddy Mouth" is another Wyatt / Frith composition. It opens with Wyatt's vocals being overlapped(different lyrics though) haha. Then his famous vocal melodies with piano arrive a minute in.

"Soup Song" is a silly song about soup.The lyrics convey the soup's thoughts. Wyatt and Hopper wrote this one. Lots of piano and sax. "Sonia" was a Feza composition, he also plays trumpet on this one. Greaves on bass. Clarinet and sax are also featured. Almost a reggae feel to it. "Team Spirit" is my favourite. A jazzy little number with great vocals from Wyatt. It does sound like a ray gun(by Eno) before and during a sax solo 3 minutes in. It(sax) then gets a little crazy 4 1/2 minutes in. "Song For Che" opens quietly but does get louder after a minute with drums and sax joining in.

Some beautiful passages on this one that i'm sure Wyatt fans are all familiar with. Sad to say that Windo and Feza are no longer with us, but they both brought a lot to the table on this recording for us to enjoy.

Mellotron Storm | 3/5 |

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