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Curved Air - Air Cut CD (album) cover

AIR CUT

Curved Air

 

Eclectic Prog

3.66 | 111 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Easy Livin
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
5 stars A hard to find diamond

A real hidden gem this one, which is generally much more progressive than Curved Air's previous albums.

With Daryl Way and Francis Monkman no longer in the band, Sonja Kristina, whose distinctive voice is one of the band's strongest trademarks, was the only original member left. She continued however to surround herself with highly competent musicians, including the multi-talented Eddie Jobson. The other Curved Air trademark, the violin of Way was mainly replaced by keyboards, with Jobson only reverting to violin on a couple of tracks.

"Purple speed queen" is a storming opener, with a great synthesiser solo in the Rick Wakeman vein. "Elfin Boy" follows on much more softly, Kristina's voice never sounded more haunting than it does here. The track is a real weepy, with beautifully sympathetic violin accompaniment. "Graceful his fingers, they waltz on the strings, gentle the song that he sings", as the lyrics go.

The third track "Metamorphosis", is in my opinion Curved Air's best ever track. Starting with almost classical piano, the track builds and softens, quickens and slows. Sonja's vocals vary from the almost child like, to seductive temptress. They combine with some really infectious themes and great instrumental work for over 10 minutes, to make for a real prog classic.

Kristina takes something of a back seat on side 2, with an instrumental track, and a rare (for Curved Air) male vocal lead on "Two three two". The feature track on side 2 is however the longer final song, "Easy". For want of a better description, this is a prog power ballad. Once again, the track has superb keyboards including an excellent instrumental break, and Kristina on top form vocally.

If all Curved Air means to you is the full frontal nudity of the cover of their first album, plus variations on "Vivaldi", this album will open up a whole new dimension for you.

Undoubtedly their best, but criminally very difficult to track down on CD. Nice painting of the then current line up on the rear cover too.

2006 update - The album has finally been released on CD. The remastering is superb, bringing out the full majesty of this wonderful album.

Easy Livin | 5/5 |

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