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Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography
Flairck - Sleight Of Hand CD (album) cover




Prog Folk

3.04 | 15 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Theo Verstrael
4 stars This album was quite a shock to me when I first heard it. I loved the intricate acoustic folk music Flairck had produced so far. I was not too impressed by the album they recorded with Georges Moustaki but it fitted their niche quite well. Actually I hoped that they would return to their 'roots' after that one and would write long instrumentals again. But this album was far from that. It opens very nicely with 'At the blacksmith's hand', a well-known folk melody which is very well played, combined with blacksmith's sounds. Then the music shifts towards a more poppy direction, probably caused by Maggie Reilly singing (who was by then already world famous because of her collaboration with Mike Oldfield). Because of this Flairck starts to sound like Mike Oldfield but then a bit more folky. The rest of the album stays on the pop side with distinctive folk influences. And how well it works! For after the shock I came to realize that I really like this album a lot. It is optimistic, it sounds folky, it is of course very well played and the variation between the vocal and the instrumental songs is very nice. Reilly's voice blends beautifully in with the acoustic music. It is totally different from the former instrumental albums like 'Circus' or 'Variaties op een dame' but it stands high in its own right.

Flairck would prove to be brave enough to try very different approaches in their music during the many years of their existence. Most of these were quite experimental. In a sense this was also a very experimental album but than according to their own standards. the result is very pleasant and strongly underrated, both on this site as well as elsewhere.

For me this is one of the best Flairck albums to listen to.

Theo Verstrael | 4/5 |


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