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The Moody Blues - On The Threshold Of A Dream  CD (album) cover

ON THE THRESHOLD OF A DREAM

The Moody Blues

 

Crossover Prog

3.72 | 253 ratings

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Prog Sothoth
4 stars Within the threshold ye doth dwell Where peace sings gently by thee knell A buttocks on the farthest shore Brings flatulence of timeless lore

This poem will not be found on this, or any album by this band, but terrible spontaneous prose always pops into my head when I think of this band's late 60s output. Their spoken word songs (such as "The Word" in this disc) are pretty blush-worthy at times, but I must say I've never felt the Moody Blues were particularly self-important. They just wanted to be happy and relax, in which the entire world being at peace would help them achieve this simple aim.

I always found this album to be among the better Moodies albums...not the best, but the most entertaining. From the opening gloomy noises interrupted by Justin Hayward pondering his existence to a robot or a talking computer, I knew I was in for a fun ride (the robot thinks Justin is magnetic ink...clearly a malfunction). This opener leads off into the happy pop rock of Lovely To See You, possessing a nice guitar lick with a muted, friendly rock guitar sound. The chorus is pretty catchy too, although belting out "lovely to see you again my friend" in the shower would be an awkward situation for any roommates.

The album continues to weave its little tales and insights through reasonably short tunes that bounce around between pop, folk and rock with an earnest sincerity. Ray Thomas seemed particularly stoned out for this recording with his Dear Diary, where he mumbles about somebody exploding an H bomb towards the tune's end, and Lazy Day, an apt title. To Share Our Love is one of Lodge's less successful attempts to show the world that the Moody Blues can rock out, but the bass is nice and heavy at least. Pinder actually has the coolest stuff on here, starting with "So Deep Within You" (babe) with its cool little 4 note guitar ditties sprinkled here and there, and of course the Have You Heard? suite that's easily the proggiest section of the album, and the most memorable. The melodies for parts I and II are pleasant and a bit trippy, but it's The Voyage section that's a mellotron feast. Pinder was putting his all into this one, possessing the "work hard play hard" ethic. I also enjoy Are You Sitting Comfortably? As well; its acoustic melodies carry both serene and haunting atmospheres, and Justin vocals are excellent in conveying the multiple moods this song evokes.

What makes this album more entertaining in general than much of their later albums is that at this point in time the psychedelic 60s mentality is still in full swing here with some wacky experimenting with the studio and various genre explorations. Later they would 'mature' into more of a sleeker soft rock group that makes listening to an entire album rough going without lots of yawning, but here they are still young, promoting LSD use and blabbing some crazy prose.

Prog Sothoth | 4/5 |

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