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Fruupp - Future Legends CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.84 | 185 ratings

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3 stars Ireland's main contribution to the world of prog rock (so far anyway) is a curious one. Fruupp always threatened to make a consistently compelling album that would break them into the big leagues, but in the end the promise was wasted, and when the dust settled on their career it became clear that the lads never crafted an album as good as this debut. In fact it's arguable that Fruupp greatest acheivement was to knock out four progressive rock albums within a 17 month period (from October 1973 to February 1975) despite losing keyboardist Stephen Houston along the way!

The words "lightweight" will come to mind when you first listen to this group (in part because the harder rocking parts are a little unconvincing) but if you give it a chance, you will find that Future Legends at least, is worth perservering with. Unflatterring comparisons to a cross between Barclay James Harvest and Wishbone Ash first crossed my mind, but Fruupp's originality eventually asserted itself for me.

The best Fruup compositions ... the gorgeous Song For A Thought, Decision, As Day Breaks With Dawn and Lord Of The Incubus ... all combine bursts of energy with melodic touches (there's a vague Beatlesque feel) and some progressive invention (the piano interlude in Lord Of The Incubus and guitar solo in Decision come to mind), although I don't really hear the "Irish element" in their music cropping up on this album.

It is perhaps unfortunate that this album which has the strongest Fruup compositions (mainly courtesy of guitarist Vince McCusker) should be one in which Peter Farrelly's unconvincing lead vocals are arguably at their weakest. It's also a real pity that Fruupp were obliged to remove the anthemic On A Clear Day from this album (on the grounds that Houston borrowed a melody from Gustav Holst) because it does give it an extra edge, but even without it, Future Legends is distinctly my favourite Fruupp album.

In fact, even though the band cut the odd worthy track after this (Wise As Wisdom, Elizabeth, Knowing You and Why) most people should stop here. Come to think of it there's something damming about the fact that I just can't bring myself to deem this record an essential one. ... 65% on the MPV scale

Trotsky | 3/5 |


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