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Uriah Heep - Return to Fantasy CD (album) cover

RETURN TO FANTASY

Uriah Heep

 

Heavy Prog

3.01 | 190 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer
3 stars 3.5 stars, really. This was to be Uriah heep´s big ´comeback´ album after the somewhat disappointing Wonderworld album and the tragic loss of their great bass player Gary Thain (who had died of drug overdose). With the celebrated John Wetton (of Family and King Crimson fame) as his replacement, one clould only hope for the best. But, alas, this was not to be. Not that Return To Fanasy is a bad album. It is not. But from the cover picture to the title of the album everything indicated their return (no pun intended) to the ´Demons and Wizzards´and Magician´s Birthday' golden period. Was it?

Well, the opening track, Return To Fantasy, goes exactly to that period. It is one of their classic songs, with great keyboards, interesting lyric, excellent vocals by David Byron and Wetton´s thumping bass proving to be ideal for the band. Unfortunatly the next songs are not of the same caliber. In fact, Shady Lady and Devil´s Daughter are some of the weakest Heep tracks recorded so far. Beautiful Dream, a better tune, sounds a bit forced and never delivers. Prima Donna is a fine little rocker that works (thanks to the help of Mel Collins saxes), but adds little to the Heep cathalog. Things start to go uphill from then on: Your turn To Remember is a fine slow rocker with great backing vocals and Why Did You Go is one of their beautiful ballads (BJ Cole on the steel guitar here). And the album closer, A Year Or a Day is the only other truly album´s gem, a great prog song with inspired lyrics and powerful playing from all band members.

So, in the end, Return To Fantasy was not what most fans expect at the time. It has only two great songs, three good ones and 3 quite weak tunes. After all these years my opinion hasn´t changed much: a good album with two classics on it. A bit little for such a great band.

Tarcisio Moura | 3/5 |

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