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Caravan - In the Land of Grey and Pink CD (album) cover




Canterbury Scene

4.30 | 1829 ratings

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Paul de Graaf
5 stars As I said earlier in my review of their great live album 'Live At Fairfield Halls' (1974; re- issued in 2002), Caravan's performance got that extra that made them my all time favourite (Canterbury-) band with the introduction of the viola of Geoff Richardson in 1973, but creatively they were at their peak in 1971 with 'In the Land of Grey and Pink'. On this lp, they created the perfect mixture of prog, jazz en light psychedelic "chamber rock" we call 'Canterbury music'. Beautifull melodic and humoresque compositions, with wandering keyboard solo's by David Sinclair of the kind that made the seventies legendary, directed in a friendly way by the percussion of underrated all time member Richard Coughlan. Also characteristic are the flute of all time contributor but not member Jimmy Hastings, and the friendly singing of Richard Sinclair. This is music that really makes me feel happy; especially during the highlight of this album, their 22:40 minute magnum opus 'Nine Feet Underground', where David Sinclair, his organ and Richard Coughlan are at their best. I think one of the saddest things in prog history is that Geoff Richardson wasn't already there to add his violin to this perfomance of this epic masterpiece, 'cause otherwise... Nevertheless, this is Canterbury at his top, and together with 'If I Could Do It All Over Again, ...' (1970), 'Waterloo Lily' (1971) (which is a little bit more jazzy) and 'For Girls Who Grow Plump In the Night (1973) (which is more symphonic), this album represents the most creative years of Caravan. Unfortunally, after 'Cunning Stunts' (1975; already a bit too poppy) they stopped making music, and started making songs instead - as for some untill yet scientifically unexplained reason most great prog bands from the seventies did around that time. If you like to explore the finest Caravan has to offer, start with this one or with the 1974 live album; if you like it, go further with the other ones I mentioned above, and if you stay curious, buy their epinomous first lp, which is a little bit more psychedelic, and still very 1968. By the way: all cd's from this period are re-issued in 2001: remastered, and with some unique bonus tracks that made me buy them all again. Five stars; if Geoff Richardson had already been there, I would have given six.
Paul de Graaf | 5/5 |


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