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Odin - Odin CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

3.42 | 45 ratings

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Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
3 stars Good (and sometimes excellent) hard Hammond-driven prog rock that was so usual in the very early part parts of the 70's (Odin can also be called UK proto prog), this "standard prog" quartet, lead by Kb/perc Jeff Beer, released their sole album on the legendary Vertigo label in 72.

Opening on the killer 11-mins Life Is Only, after a gradual build-up, Beer's infernal Hammond drives the rest of the group into many great twists and detours, very ably seconded by guitarist Terstall. Beer's organ playing is a composite of a wise Emerson and calmer Vincent Crane and a lesser riff-oriented Jon Lord, and reminds most of Uriah's Hensley, but certainly more inclined to lead role than the last two cited. The singing is good but unremarkable, but should not turn anyone off. The short instrumental Tribute To Frank (Zappa I guess, given the vibraphone) is another winner. However, the following Turnpike Lane has a heard-elsewhere melody (although I could never place), while the acoustic Be The Man You Are closes the first side in a rather less then enthusiastic fashion.

The flipside-opening 9-mins cover Gemini is the other highlight of the album, where Beer's organ rumps wildly in the middle section, although the chorus gets on my nerves (this writer is detests astrology and anything remotely related to it). The short Eucalyptus is a rather nice downbeat instrumental while the closing 8-mins+ Clown is another strong track where the instrumental passages are again taking the upper hand over the chorus-verse part of the song.

A very worthy one shot album that should ravish most of the early 70's buffs, looking for such beauties like Indian Summer, Steel Mill and more of Hammond-driven prog. I wouldn't call this album an unearthed gem, because of its release on Vertigo and its constant availability through the high-profile Repertoire record in CD format, but also because the songwriting is rather uneven at times and the band's strength was clearly in the good instrumental interplay.

Sean Trane | 3/5 |


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