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Egg - The Polite Force CD (album) cover




Canterbury Scene

4.15 | 374 ratings

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Post/Math Rock Team
4 stars One of the best organ/bass/drums combos ever. Egg was a lot more classical sounding than almost any other Canterbury group. At times they sound like a darker and stranger version of The Nice. Dave Stewart is one of the best keyboardists in prog. Sometimes he has a sound that I like to call "heavy metal organ". Seriously, these guys can be as heavy as Sabbath...but without a guitar player!

"A Visit To Newport Hospital" may be the best song Egg ever did. It starts off with an almost metal type riff which comes back later. Some of the lyrics are about Uriel, which was this trio plus Steve Hillage who recorded an album under the name Arzachel. "Contrasong" is the only other song with vocals. It's a very upbeat jazzy rock'n'roll song. There are some horns, piano and a little bit of organ in addition to the vocals/bass/drums. "Boilk" is about as far as you could possibly get from "Contrasong". Very avant-garde piece. There is a much shorter song with the same name on the band's debut album. It begins with running water. Later there is what sounds like a classical music record that is varispeeded. There is backwards this and that all over the place. It ends with some church-like organ.

Egg had some of the craziest time signatures for a rock trio. Nowhere is this more noticeable than on "Long Piece No. 3"(especially Part 4). Part 2 is the most interesting of the four parts. Even though the whole 'piece' is one, it's individual sections are clearly separated. The sounds Stewart comes up with on his organ are unreal. Specifically his use of tone generator. He uses other effects on the organ too. In addition to bass, Mont Campbell plays French horn as well.

This is the best Egg album. The debut comes close. The 'reunion' album Civil Surface is good too, but not as good as the first two. Oddly enough, this would probably appeal more to Nice/ELP fans than it would to people who love Caravan. The only Canterbury that really comes close to sounding like this is early Soft Machine and the two Hatfield & The North albums. Only "Boilk" is what keeps me from giving this 5 stars. So 4 stars it is.

zravkapt | 4/5 |


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