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The Nice - Ars Longa Vita Brevis CD (album) cover

ARS LONGA VITA BREVIS

The Nice

 

Symphonic Prog

3.25 | 76 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Evolver
Special Collaborator
Crossover & JazzRock/Fusion Teams
4 stars With singer/guitarist David O'List leaving the band before this, only the second album by The Nice, was released, this record became the precursor to Emerson Lake & Palmer's music. And for 1968, it's quite good.

The album starts with the strange Daddy Where Did I Come From?, a throwaway piece, that starts out as a ditty about how a parent reacts to a child asking about sex, and bizarrely turns into an indictment against drinking. If you thought Benny The Bouncer was out of place... But Emerson saves this with a couple of nice keyboard interludes.

Little Arabella is a jazzy number, with Emerson providing cool Hammond licks. Then comes Happy Freuds, easily the worst song on the album. Lee Jackson's vocals make it almost painful to listen to.

The remainder of the album is worth the price of admission. Starting with Intermezzo from the Karelia Suite, and continuing through the six movement Ars Vita Longa Brevis, the band does an excellent job of playing classical music adapted for the power trio. If you didn't know better, you might think you were listening to very early ELP. This is highly recommended for the ELP enthusiast.

Evolver | 4/5 |

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