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Mahavishnu Orchestra - Apocalypse CD (album) cover


Mahavishnu Orchestra


Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.65 | 279 ratings

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3 stars In the years when I terrorized my neighbours in boarding school with my Mahavishnu cassettes, I sort of skipped this album. Despite the orchestra it didn't seem to add anything relevant to the Mahavishnu sound. I also found it long-winded and thought that the orchestra was more distracting then adding anything.

After a gentle intro, Vision brings the orchestra to the fore and adds some Prokofiev flavour to the Mahavishnu sound. While I like both the orchestral part and the improvisation here, I don't think they sit really well together, except for the last few seconds where the orchestra joins the band. It rather feels like a copy-paste job then like a good example of integrating an orchestra into rock.

Smile of the Beyond introduces vocals. It's not without merit but jazz vocals like this are not really my cup of tea. (Who knows, maybe in a couple of years they will be). Halfway in the band joins for a short but rather generic jam. Wings of Karma starts with a classical introduction that reminds me of Prokofiev's more romantic moments. Again I don't think the interplay with the orchestra to be very successful, so if I want to hear this ambience I'll rather play Romeo and Juliet.

Up until now, I'd say we've been listening to a 3.5 star album, so obviously the 19 minute Hymn will make it flip one way or the other. Frankly it sounds like a bad mix of a rather uninspired fusion jam with a romantic film score. No, this one will flip to the 3 stars.

It looks like my taste hasn't changed a bit in 20 years. Is this an indication that I always judged this album correctly? Or is this something I should really worry about :-/

Bonnek | 3/5 |


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