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Various Artists (Label Samplers) - A Breath Of Fresh Air: A Harvest Records Anthology/ 1969-1974 CD (album) cover

A BREATH OF FRESH AIR: A HARVEST RECORDS ANTHOLOGY/ 1969-1974

Various Artists (Label Samplers)

 

Various Genres

4.00 | 3 ratings

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Matti
4 stars This 3-CD set is not a prog rock compilation per se; it collects, as the title says, material from the HARVEST label - which however was pretty much concentrating on prog. But all represented artists really can't be regarded as prog artists, even if almost all are at least CLOSE to the genre. The most stand-out prog artists here are PINK FLOYD obviously (including also Syd Barrett and Roger Waters solos), BARCLAY JAMES HARVEST, KEVIN AYERS, JAN AKKERMAN (of Focus), QUATERMASS, BABE RUTH, E.L.O., and of course DEEP PURPLE if one wants to see it as a prog band. Also among major/ long-time artists are ROY HARPER, MICHAEL CHAPMAN and SHIRLEY COLLINS. Several artists have multiple tracks, for example EDGAR BROUGHTON BAND has four tracks.

Naturally there are many rare short-lived acts too, which always are the spice of these compilations for a prog connoisseur. Band infos are kept short but informative. Musically this set is very uneven for any individual taste, but that's inevitable. How well the tracks from each artists are chosen is not easy to estimate if one doesn't know their output already. I'm quite happy with the selections of Floyd, BJH and Harper for example.

There were some artists I didn't enjoy for any of the chosen tracks (such as THIRD EAR BAND). I don't know the HARVEST legacy very thoroughly, but I'd suppose there would have been more interesting material to replace some tracks by those with several ones, in order to give even wider picture. But this is an educative and interesting compilation all the same.

Matti | 4/5 |

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