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Raw Material - Raw Material CD (album) cover


Raw Material


Eclectic Prog

3.53 | 53 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
3 stars RAW MATERIAL were a band out of England who released two studio albums. This is the debut from 1970 and the followup is called "Time Is..." from 1971. The second album is much better than the debut in my opinion, not only more consistent but just better songs overall. They were a five piece band and besides the usual instruments we also get flute, sax and harmonica. This is a short one clocking in around 32 minutes.

"Time And Illusion" is my favourite off this album and one that reminds me of "Time Is...". I was a little excited the first time I heard this song because I thought this was an indication of how good the rest of the album was going to be. Nope! Anyway strummed guitar and reserved vocals to start and it's quite sparse sounding until it kicks in just before a minute with bass, drums and organ joining the party. Contrasts continue. We get an organ solo and what sounds like vibes which sound to upfront in the mix when they arrive around 3 minutes. By the way the organ solo I mentioned goes from after 2 minutes to the end so a 5 1/2 minute solo.

"I'd Be Delighted" is my least favourite track. Just too commercial sounding even if I like he rhythm section. Some flute comes in over top but man the chorus is bad. Sax before 3 1/2 minutes. Nope I don't like this one. "Fighting Cock" opens with guitar and bass as reserved vocals arrive. It kicks into an uptempo rocker with passionate vocals before 2 minutes. Vocals stop as a sax solo arrives before 2 1/2 minutes. The vocals are back a minute later.

"Pear On An Apple Tree" was a contender for the worst song but it got the consolation prize instead. Another commercial sounding track with the focus on the vocals and guitar. I'm just not into this one at all. "Future Recollections" opens with drums and bass as intricate guitar joins in then vocals. This is relaxed but the drums are active. A laid back number with mellow vocals and a 60's vibe.

"Traveller Man" is really the only other song besides the opener that I really like. This one sounds so much like JETHRO TULL, especially the vocals. Some nice guitar after 2 minutes as the vocals step aside for the rest of the song. The guitar goes on and on then we get harmonica taking over before 4 1/2 minutes as the guitar steps aside. It's back! "Destruction Of America" is a poem of spoken words that really is pretty good if you like this sort of thing. Seems like a prayer for the USA.

Most fans point to the second album as the one to get and I'd agree. While these may be obscure releases both have had many re-issues over the years so it's all about the timing I suppose.

Mellotron Storm | 3/5 |


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