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Hawkwind - Quark, Strangeness And Charm CD (album) cover




Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.69 | 257 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars It is a great shame that this isn't currently available on CD. I don't think I've ever handed out five stars (maybe I have), but Hawkwind has released countless albums, and this is the best, so I can do it here without reservation. Sure, Space Ritual and Do Re Mi are bracing stuff, but this album is where Dave Brock, with the invaluable aid of visionary Bob Calvert, streamlined and rationalized the band's sound and intent, creating an experience akin to reading a great classic sci-fi novel. I can't overstate the positive influence that Calvert's lyrical gift brought. And the tunes are great too.

Despite Simon House's lyrical violin, which is all over the record, a wee new wave influence crept in, which only helped to emphasize the cold, futuristic vibe of the record. Highlights: Fable of a Failed Race is an ethereal ballad full of wonderfully layered guitars and vocals. Just beautiful. Spirit of the Age: A geniune classic and a story of sci-fi love in the distant future. Catchy too. Days of the Underground: In which Calvert turns a critical eye on the remains of the counterculture that Hawkwind had been immersed in only a few years before. Chilling. Unfortunately, Calvert departed shortly after and the band began its decline into heavy metal wannabes, then into hippie self-parody shortly thereafter. They've done some good stuff since (Electric Teepee, Space Bandits), but this is the pinnacle of their career and the timeless crystallization of their usually unfocussed vision, so get this one and Space Ritual, if you get nothing else by the band. Bob Calvert RIP.

Heptade | 5/5 |


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