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National Health - Of Queues And Cures CD (album) cover


National Health


Canterbury Scene

4.27 | 437 ratings

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3 stars Being new to National Health, I am forced to take this album entirely on its own terms. Given those terms, I find it oxymoronically quite listenable and yet uncompelling. Certainly there is a great deal of creative composition and excellent musicianship. I particularly liked The Collapso, Squarer for Maud, and Dreams Wide Awake, all of which have lots of great prog bits, played with remarkable proficiency. And yet... Although some of these compositions have initially stated themes, the playing often goes so far adrift that when (or if...) the theme is restated at the end, it ends up being a "bookend" for a lot of largely directionless (if admittedly extremely proficient) playing. In addition, I have to agree with another reviewer that this music treads a fine line between prog-rock and "fusion noodling." In addition to Return to Forever, I hear a great deal of Bruford's early solo work - which just happened to come out the year before this, and also featured Dave Stewart on keyboards. That said, if you like your prog largely instrumental, played with great panache, but sometimes somewhat directionless, this is definitely a very listenable album.
maani | 3/5 |


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