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Procol Harum - Shine On Brightly CD (album) cover

SHINE ON BRIGHTLY

Procol Harum

 

Crossover Prog

4.05 | 220 ratings

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Sinusoid
Prog Reviewer
3 stars Even if I find myself getting polarized amongst these early prog records of the mid-late '60s, they have a bit of that historical resonance that prog fans need to be at least aware of. Procol Harum is a band that has such a reputation as one of the first prog rock bands or at least one that incorporated elements that would later fall in the ''prog'' banner.

If the band could break ground in ''A Whiter Shade of Pale'' by sneaking Bach lines into a light pop song, but the multi-sectioned ''In Held Twas in I'' dug further into new territories in all of its seventeen minute glory. I would love to join the choirs of praise for the epic, but I can't fully. ''In Held Twas in I'' really does sound like the first epic as it's very prototype-ish, patchy and isn't the cleanest in segueing. It's like Procol Harum wanted to have sitar-drenched psych, classical bombast, circus/carnival music and their patented sound in one piece of music.

Somehow the shorter songs are what save SHINE ON BRIGHTLY because they've got that Procol Harum sound in semi-light classically-influenced '60s pop music with a little juice to them. The dynamics between Brooker and Fisher is actually quite marvelous with the piano and Hammond doing slightly different things. Trower's buzzy guitars are the icing on the cake, and everything wonderful about this album can be summed up on the title track and ''Skip Softly''.

To be honest, I find SHINE ON BRIGHTLY lacking stellar production, and to be honest, that's why I didn't care for this album before. Then Side A hit me as splendid pop music with an incredible sense of divine melody and soulful vocals. The mammoth epic is part of prog's history, and that's that.

Sinusoid | 3/5 |

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