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The Penguin Cafe Orchestra - Penguin Cafe Orchestra CD (album) cover


The Penguin Cafe Orchestra


Eclectic Prog

4.18 | 40 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

1967/ 1976
4 stars Interesting band this Penguin Cafe Orchestra, probably the last 70's Prog band to born. This is the creature of Simon Jeffes and have a strange line-up with other 10 musicians and in my opinion Penguin Cafe Orchestra is a chamber version of E.L.O., not just to be accurate but not so much to give a rough idea of the music offered. This is the 2nd album and the title is "Penguin Cafe orchestra". This album was recorded at the Penguin Cafe between 1977 and 1980. All the songs was wrote by Simon Jeffes except for "Paul's Dance" (Jeffes and Nye), "Cutting Branches" (traditional), and "Walk Don't Run" (by J. Smith). If you search the band and the album in Wikipedia this album is scheduled as instrumental Folk. This is correct but also not proper correct. Ok, the music is Folk but since the structure of the songs are also close to Canterbury or Krautrock I think that Penguin Cafe Orchestra as band (and as album) are good also as Prog band. In a good substance if you think a strange mix between Amazing Blondel, Fairport Convention, East Of Eden, Mike Oldfield, Aktuala, Popol Vuh and Clark Hutchinson (all in acoustic version) and Mozart with renaissance music and you think a great ballad version of this mix in Folk field you have Penguin Cafe Orchestra. In general if you think that King Crimson was the best for complexity, Penguin Cafe Orchestra in the chamber version of King Crimson but without their complexity!

I do not have a favorite song in this album but sure "Pythagora's Trousers", dominated by viola is the more Rock song in this album. "Walk Don't Run" in this version is great. The rest of the album is in the direction that I have described above, in some moments more close to Krautrock and in some moments more close to Folk.

In definitive if you not love chamber music or atmospheric Folk I think that Penguin Cafe is a difficult band (and album). Vice versa Penguin Cafe Orchestra is your band (and album)

1967/ 1976 | 4/5 |


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