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Public Foot The Roman - Public Foot The Roman CD (album) cover

PUBLIC FOOT THE ROMAN

Public Foot The Roman

 

Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.52 | 29 ratings

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Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
3 stars 3.5 stars really!!!

Sole album from this formation although their self-titled album bore a striking Hipgnosis artwork that could evoke Close encounter a few years before hand. This Cambridge combo derived their amusing name from road panels, much like a Canterbury band did that same year. A double guitar prog quintet where the vocals played a major role, and three member sang lead, while all of them contributed to choirs, PFTR had a fairly

Apart the atrocious radio-friendly opening track Land Owner (XXXX), , PFTR is still often sounding like those early 70?s UK proto-prog bands (not in PA?s definition or PR) and a prototype of future AOR that would overflow the airwaves later in the decade. Indeed the much superior When You Lay It Down is more in the organ driven hard prog mould (with a bit of Yes Album tinge) meeting Argus-like Wishbone Ash. While not quite as bad as the opener, King For A Day sounds like third rate Lynyrd (that country feel) meeting Wishbone, while the 6-mins Judas Return takes on a Yes turn, simply because the band takes its time to show more than basic song schemas.

The flipside is filled with more of the same (bat of course the opener) and the Yes and WA influences abound but are never overbearing either, because PFTR has its own sound as well. The organ-driven Don?t Bite The Hand is great moment of interplay, once past the fairly conventional song format. The following on My Mind might just be the catchiest track on the album, starting on acoustic arpeggios and remaining acoustic over triple vocal harmonies (Cressida?s better moments are also on my mind here). All is left is the 8-mins+ Decline And Fall, the Yesser track of the album and again plenty of time to mingle strings, keys and skins.

The band (half the band, actually) would then commit a strange suicide by getting rid of their original name and changing to a stupid one: the movies. They would go on to record a few albums under that moniker until the early 80?s, but I?ve never of the group or their albums. But getting back to PFTR, their album is certainly not anything essential or groundbreaking, but they stood in the pack of tens of dozens of valid bands that deserved more attention, but there was only so much space in the early 70?s sunlight. In other words if Wishbone ash had done Argus with keyboards and proggier and lesser D&D lyrics, it could?ve sounded like this

Sean Trane | 3/5 |

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