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Egg - The Polite Force CD (album) cover




Canterbury Scene

4.13 | 441 ratings

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4 stars Math jazz!........

Not only one of my favourite Canterbury albums (of the ones I know). It's one of my favourite albums full stop. With interesting composition as their main priority, Dave Stewart (keyboards),Mont Campbell (bass,vocals) and Clive Brooks (drums) take you through passages of dissonance and Canterbury melancholy (sometimes switching between the two within a single chord change) and executing their carefully planned patterns with excellent precision. Plenty to soak up if you are into the more challenging stuff.

'A Visit to Newport Hospital' starts off with a slow drony dirge with the keyboards sounding so mean, one could almost think there was a guitarist accompanying the group. The first passage soon gets cut off abruptly and goes into the main section of the song, filled with beautiful chord changes that flow so well together. At around three minutes the vocals come in. The song ends with the same passage it began with (only this time a little faster). Definetly one of the best Egg pieces.

'Contrasong' is next, a jumpy uptempo horn dominated song, what's the catch? It's in a wierd time signature that bounces around all over the place. It's interesting that aside from the first and last part of A visit to Newport hospital there is very little or almost no 4/4 sections to be heard in this entire album. For the most part it's odd numbers galore and quite impressive that they can play them so well.

'Boilk' is next and is certainly the low part of the album. A 9 minute sound collage that sounds like something that could have been on Pink Floyd's Ummagumma studio album. It's not horrible but compared to the other tracks it ruins what would otherwise be a 5 star album. Anyway after the 9 minutes of not much, it moves on to the sidelong.......

'Long Piece no3' Part 1: all I have to say is, imagine trying to memorise this, I mean all those abrupt pauses, notes skipping and adding beats everywhere. DAMN! sounds good though. Part 2: great melodies to be found throughout, each pattern works really well. More melodic than the previous part and serves as a good segue from the frantic randomness of part 1 Part 3: much like the previous part, great psychedelic freak out tone generator jam at the end. Part 4:or the frantic finish as it could alternatively be called. A good finish to the album.

Overall an interesting and enjoyable album that should be up there with the major Canterbury albums.

irrelevant | 4/5 |


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