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Caravan - If I Could Do It All Over Again, I'd Do It All Over You CD (album) cover




Canterbury Scene

4.25 | 1073 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars "Psssst!.... the green one is better than the pink one"........

Caravan's second album is full of psych-pop, organ-rock and fancy jamming in 7/8. It's not samey though; the band are capable of delivering a wide variety of moods and styles, and perhaps more successfully than that, a wide variety of heavily syncopated rhythms. The nature of their music just invites the listener to groove to it, yet it carries a sense of intelligent, structured song-writing that is sometimes missing on psychedelic records.

The short numbers are not filler tracks for once (this is probably what makes 'If I Could Do It Again...' more fulfilling than 'In The Land of Grey and Pink'). They are beautiful, cool songs with a great grasp of those 5/8, 7/8 and 11/8 time signatures (goes without saying for Caravan) and even catchier melodies than the longer pieces. What those extended songs do however, is create moods for us to jam along to, and sometimes it's fantastic that these romps last for a long time. These guys seem to always have a talent for changing the feel of the music just before the moment where it starts to get boring.

Highlights for me include 'As I Feel I Die', probably the most rocking song on the album, with a very hot organ solo reminiscent of Jimmy Smith; 'With An Ear To The Ground You Can Make It', which has lots of cool interludes that carry you somewhere afar; and of course the 'For Richard...' suite. This piece starts atmospherically before blasting you with the best riff on the album (which is actually in 4/4!) and then going through various jazz-noodles before closing with some Uriah Heep style hard rock. But do not misinterpret my praising of these amazing tracks, the entire album is of a very high quality.

I like the structure of this album; not using the bigger pieces to open or close but rather, wedging them right in the depths of the record for the listener to rummage through and find. It makes you sit through the little pop songs, which, as I said, are brilliant. In this way, the album feels longer and more varied than it's follow-up. Although nothing on here is perhaps as good as 'Nine Feet Underground', none of it is mediocre either, like side one of 'In The Land of Grey and Pink' is. People are divided on which album is better, which is why they have similar ratings. Only a fool would not get both, but be sure to get this, the underdog, first.

thehallway | 5/5 |


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