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Beggars Opera - Pathfinder CD (album) cover

PATHFINDER

Beggars Opera

 

Symphonic Prog

3.31 | 100 ratings

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stefro
Prog Reviewer
2 stars Very different in sound and style from their previous two studio albums(the classically-tainted ACT ONE and WATERS OF CHANGE), PATHFINDER is probably the Scots band's strongest effort, eschewing the ELP- esque piano medley's and Bach-inspired epics in favour of poppier, more melody-orientated tunes in which Ricky Gardiner' impressive lead guitar begins to take centre stage. In fact, the LP liner notes declare(somewhat pompously) that PATHFINDER is a completely new departure for the group, with no single song over the 7-minute mark, and a jolly, enjoyable cover of M'MacArthur Park' filling up the running time alongside the more prosaic, prog-pop cuts such as the pacey opener 'Hobo' and the recently covered(by ex-members of the darkness)rock-horror-histrionics of 'The Witch', complete with opening ear-splitting scream. Fans of early seventies prog and rock will find much to enjoy here, with PATHFINDER a welcome improvement on the groups indulgent earlier material; non-aficianado's may find a crumb of interest here and there, but it's an album that is very much of it's time. An un-expected bonus proves to be the striking artwork, depicting an astronaut riding a rather stressed- out looking horse(NOT by Roger Dean), but it's hard not to feel slightly jaded by some of the more impenetrable lyrics, the slightly jokey tone and the bands predeliction for myths and legends-themed stories that give the whole package a rather quaint, frivolous feel.

stefro | 2/5 |

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