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Clouds - Scrapbook/Watercolour Days CD (album) cover




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4.04 | 8 ratings

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4 stars Scrapbook/Watercolour Days

I was pleased when this hit the shops in the mid-nineties, for it meant that two of my most well-worn vinyl albums could have a rest. I was also thrilled to hear the difference in quality, and noticed a couple of edits that weren't there before. All good stuff. But most of all, it was great to see this band rehabilitated before my very eyes when the world had so thoroughly and undeservedly passed them by.

I think the thing most people reading about Clouds find surprising is how far they travelled yet got nowhere. For a band no-one seemed to have heard of till relatively recently, they had done most things that first division bands had done; played the Albert Hall, the Fillmores, the Island records tour, two American tours, three albums, three singles, two compilations, TV, radio etc etc. Yet they disappeared from radar so completely as to be invisible.

Yet here they are, large as life, and releasing records to the present day. But all we really have is the ghost of Clouds, and lingering in the shadows behind them, that ghost of Christmas past, 1-2-3, whose untimely death haunts those who took the heritage without payment. These rattling chains and distant echoes from 1967 must be unsettling to those in the twilight of their careers, who know the truth of selling your soul to the devil for a priceless glimpse of the future.

I suppose it's miraculous that Clouds survived after 1-2-3 at all, but perhaps the spiritual purpose of Clouds' legacy is to yet remind us of that original band, blazing a thankless trail that benefited everyone but themselves. Some of that early brilliance has rubbed off onto this record. But not enough to stop us being dissatisfied with the loss of such a priceless gem..

JeanFrame | 4/5 |


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