Beggars Opera - Waters of Change  CD (album) cover


Beggars Opera


Symphonic Prog

3.58 | 134 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars Although this curious Scottish outfit would arguably reach their creative peak on 1972's excellent 'Pathfinder' album, both their previous efforts - 1970's classically-influenced 'Act One' and this 1971 release - are well worth investigating.

Eschewing the classical motifs of their debut for a more rock-based sound and made-up of shorter individual compositions, 'Waters Of Change' proves to be a surprisingly eclectic effort featuring a broad palette of style's, the album's nine tracks truly running the stylistic gamut and moving gracefully from celestial psychedelia('Time Machine'') to straight-ahead symphonic rock('Nimbus') and back again via the theatrical strains baroque pop('Silver Peacock').

Six-strong, Beggar's Opera were one of the many groups who operated on the margins of the progressive rock genre, never fully attaining true commercial-or-critical success yet making enough of a splash to be taken seriously. With each album deliberately different from the next, this was a very much a group with lots of ideas but just a tad unsure of how to actually use them all. And 'Waters Of Change' is a prime example. Never dull, it offers up some great moments - opening track 'Time Machine' is suitably atmospheric - yet showcases a slightly absurdist streak that sometimes detracts from the music. That said, you'll do well to find anyone quite like Beggars Opera, with the nearest touchstone probably being the similarly- eclectic sounds of Howard Werth's Audience. Hardly essential stuff then, but not without it's merits.


stefro | 3/5 |


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