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Manfred Mann's Earth Band - The Roaring Silence CD (album) cover


Manfred Mann's Earth Band


Eclectic Prog

3.85 | 273 ratings

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4 stars One of the last great prog albums from the 70s, The Roaring Silence is often unfairly overlooked because of the "pop" factor of the Blinded By The Light hit single. But I think this is an outstanding album with some stunning playing and loads of great songs.

In fact, I'd say that The Roaring Silence contains some of Mann's best ever synth playing, and the new boys, vocalist Chris Thompson and guitarist Dave Flett both do a great job of replacing stalwart Mick Rogers. In fact Thompson is a distinctly stronger vocalist. Aside from the awesome Springsteen covers Blinded By The Light (which has two absolutely sensational guitar solos from Flett and a piano break that incorporates Chopsticks!) and the quirky clever Spirit In The Night, two songs particularly stand out. Questions is a truly heart-breaking search that has me "plunged into the depths of despair, while the Gates Of Babylon, from its traditional Babylon (a song I first heard on Don McLean's American Pie album!) intro and outro to the superb ominous entry and the awesome soloing is another of MMEB's greatest songs.

Starbird is yet another powerful track with a great "gregorian chant" feel to the vocal segment and some sizzling solos, while Waiter There's A Yawn In My Year is an outstanding prog instrumental that never bores despite being reasonably lengthy. The only two questionable tunes for me are Singing The Dolphin Through and This Side Of Paradise, both of which have melodies that are really too precious and twee for my taste. Yet even these pieces are redeemed by great instrumental work.

There is a polished feel to the music that does make it seem light years away from my favourite MMEB album The Solar Fire, but The Roaring Silence is still one hell of an album. ... 82% on the MPV scale

Trotsky | 4/5 |


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