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Barclay James  Harvest - Face to Face CD (album) cover


Barclay James Harvest


Crossover Prog

2.57 | 81 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

3 stars It was on "Face to face" where it got evident that John Lees and Les Holroyd were really drifting apart as songwriters, and sometimes you wish for a link to make this album one connected, flowing piece of music.

About the music: "African" by John Lees is the absolute standout-track on this album... it can blow you away, really, and if I'd have to choose only one song from BJH to represent the "best they did in the 80s", it was THIS for sure ( as, for the 90's, it was "Cold War" until "Float" came along ! ).

"Turn the Key" should have been a hit... and "He said Love", recalling "Hymn" in a more evangelic way, is quite uplifting, too. Some sounds used may have been modern, then, but sound dated now, but this is not to be blamed on the band.

"All my Life" is bursting with tension, a piece of 80s Pop I still really like, while "Guitar Blues" is drowned in synth-strings and voices, less would have been more. "Panic"... well, more attitude than song... and "Kiev"... an idle one from a composer's point of view, Les Holroyd had far better attempts in making "Big Gesture Songs" offering well known Chord- progressions, although beautiful... it is, still.

"Alone in the Night" leaves me at a loss a little, it's got great parts but as a whole it's falling into pieces. The others... well, "On the wings of love" made it in its live-rendition for me, but here it's got a very artificial sound, as well as "Prisoner of your love", overproduced but not bad if you like the Pop-Side of Les Holroyd ( His love to Toto and Chicago broke way through there and then )...

Not a GREAT album ( without Woolly Wolstenholme BJH had no GREAT Albums anymore - with the exception of "EYES OF THE UNIVERSE" ) but a nice one.


rupert | 3/5 |


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