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Barclay James  Harvest - Gone To Earth CD (album) cover


Barclay James Harvest


Crossover Prog

3.36 | 183 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

1 stars A surprisingly weak album which has fewer redeeming features than you might reasonably expect, since the albums before (Octoberon) and after (XII) are definitely among the better BJH records.

Starting with the anodyne and bland HYMN (*) which is almost totally harmonically and rhythmically static and relies on a very simple repeated melody which crescendos as it is joined by more instruments, before we are left with about 30 seconds of pompous background noise at the end...

Moving on through the almost equally weedy and annoying LOVE IS LIKE A VIOLIN which at least has a contrasting chorus (*), we reach

FRIEND OF MINE, a rather empty-sounding and repetitive little number which has just enough interest and contrast to not be quite a poor as the first two (**).

Then it's POOR MAN'S MOODY BLUES, which, though winsome, is not as weak as the preceding three. But that's because it's very, very similar to Justin Hayward's "Nights in White Satin". Pretty in places, if you can stand the winsomeness, but pointless. (**)

HARD-HEARTED WOMAN (**) starts with a similar guitar riff to the one which opens Friend of Mine. The song is less offensive than most of what we've already heard but has a couple of dreadful instrumental breaks around the middle and end, the second of which fades into

SEA OF TRANQUILITY, an almost typically noble and lush offering from Woolly Wolstenholme (RIP, Woolly) yet which doesn't reach the heights of his best writing (***).

Then SPIRIT ON THE WATER, which has enough pleasant moments to make it one of the better tracks, despite being desparately wimpy at times (**)

LEPER'S SONG is slightly rockier, yet with a bounce to it. Inoffensive. (**)

TAKING ME HIGHER is a pleasant, yet pedestrian and predictable little song. (**)

I rate the album at between * and ** and still wonder why it is so thin on musical interest.

_Mike | 1/5 |


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