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Mormos - The Magic Spell Of Mother's Wrath CD (album) cover




Prog Folk

3.45 | 6 ratings

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3 stars Mormos were one of those products of the late sixties that end up being featured on those VH1 ‘Where are they now?’ shows, although I don’t know if any of these guys ever made it onto one of those episodes. Like other acid/psych rockers of the late sixties, several members of this band left one such band (Spoils of War, which I’d never heard of outside the context of Mormos) and formed an acoustic folk group that migrated in true hippie fashion to France to spend a few years – well, being hippies I guess. The group released a couple of albums before a few of them wandered back to the U.S. to land in a more conventional rock group named Mountain Bus (and later renamed to SkyFarmer after they were not surprisingly sued by Leslie West and his Mountain crew).

The music on this, Mormos’ second and final album, is a mildly interesting blend of acoustic folk, inevitable mellow psych influences, and some pretty odd vocals. Annie Hat (now Ann Lindquist) plays flute and provides plead vocals, while the rest of the band lays down these wandering tracks of domra, cello, acoustic guitar, balalaika, zither, recorder and various whistles and hand drums. This is a fairly short album at only a bit more than 30 minutes, although the Spalax reissue includes a couple of bonus tracks.

There’s nothing too revolutionary or exciting about this particular album, and the leanings are closer to free-form jazz on many places than to actual folk, but Hat’s vocals keep the folk fašade going well enough for the most part.

This is another of those old American folk records that fetches prices that exceed the actual merits of the music, but thanks to reissues those of us with more modest discretionary income can have a listen as well. The lengthy “Rit Yellow” is the marquee track on the album with persistent acoustic guitar strumming laying a bed for the various flutes, recorders, whistles and stringed instruments that seem to be largely improvising throughout most of the nine-plus minutes that the track runs. An interesting but rather unfocused piece of music that pretty much describes the rest of the album. Several of the other tracks aren't much more than remnants of a couple minutes or less duration with little to distinguish them.

I wouldn’t go out your way to find this one unless you are a fan of obscure early American folk music with psych and jazz leanings. That’s kind of a narrow interest group, but if you are one of those then this should probably be in your collection. Otherwise I’ll just say this is a low three star effort and leave it at that.


ClemofNazareth | 3/5 |


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