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REVELATION

Man

 

Psychedelic/Space Rock

2.90 | 33 ratings

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Nightfly
Special Collaborator
Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
2 stars Man's debut album Revelation bore little resemblance the American west coast jam band influenced group they would become. Forming from the ashes of Welsh Pop group The Bystanders, who released quite a few singles aimed at commercial stardom but enjoying little success beyond their south Wales stronghold. Despite the lack of success with The Bystanders by the time of this release due to numerous live performances and years learning their craft Man were already a tight unit with a particularly strong grasp in the use of vocal harmonies.

Revelation is a Psychedelic Pop/Rock concept album based on evolution and whilst you can see why it didn't set the world on fire is a more than competent start for a band who would go on to produce some excellent albums in the seventies.

Fittingly it starts with And In The Beginning with a clap of thunder before a somewhat cheesy sounding organ comes in. It gets better though as the song kicks off with a slightly Indian sounding guitar riff and a decent lead vocal from ever present through many line ups Micky Jones. Those harmonies are used to great effect too.

Sudden Life has a strong blues feel with the vocal harmonies present again. Empty Room could be The Doors until the vocals come in being derivative of the sound of so many bands of the era in the Psych Pop field. This could also be said of Puella Puella (Woman! Woman!) without The Doors influence which hasn't stood the test of time too well. The vocals being sung with no words and dominated by what sounds like a recorder.

Love is a melancholic acoustic piece and followed by Erotica which no doubt would have had trouble with the censors of the time if they'd attempted to release it as a single due to it basically being an instrumental with the sound of a woman having an orgasm over the top.

Blind Man gets them back on track and is a fast up tempo shuffle with a dominant honky tonk style Piano until the song changes tack to a slower ending to fade out. And Castles Rise in Childrens Eyes (was there ever a more sixties sounding song title than that!) and it's another instrumental (apart from a few harmonised ah's) heavy on the keyboards but pretty good nevertheless.

Don't Just Stand There (Come in Out of the Rain) is another up tempo rocker with a nice Organ sound and a few heavy guitar riffs. I could imagine Uriah Heep coming up with this in places. The Missing Pieces has a military band intro before going off on a totally different tangent into a rather zany piece with some strange vocals and is a bit of a throwaway track.

Closing with The Future Hides it's Face revisits the opening track And In The Beginning to bookend the album nicely.

While Revelation sounds somewhat dated today and is very derivative of the time it's a solid enough debut from one of the most underrated bands of the seventies but not the best place to start in exploring the Man back catalogue. 2 ½ stars.

Nightfly | 2/5 |

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