Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography
Kevin Ayers - Joy Of A Toy CD (album) cover


Kevin Ayers


Canterbury Scene

3.63 | 124 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

The Wizard
Prog Reviewer
3 stars If your into Canterbury you should look into this. After are hero Kevin Ayers left the Soft Machine as a bassist because he couldn't handle the touring schedule, he decided to become a singer/songwriter backed by a great band. This album isn't exactly prog but an intelligent pop albums with an avant garde twist. The songwriting perfectly characterizes the lazy bohemian character of Mr. Ayers, full of British whimsy.

The instrumentation features many different and exotic instruments not usually seen in a rock album. There are lots of oboes and cellos about which give it a symphonic feel in some parts. The guitar, while somewhat sparse, is usually rhythm. Keyboards do the soloing, usually in a Canterbury-esque matter (distortion and wah).

The first track Joy of a Toy is somewhat annoying to my taste, but it gets much better. Town felling is a very whimsical piece with it's piano line giving the impression of walking through a town. Song for insane, a Soft Machine remake, times has some witty lyrics. Girl on a swing is pretty good, and so in Clarietta Rag which has a great organ solo. Stop this train (again doing it) has an offbeat rhythm and singing and an incredible Mike Rateledge Organ solo.

Eleanor's Cake (which ate her) is a nice acoustic song. Lady Rachel is has some cool sound effects and such, making it one of the more progressive songs. Oleh Oleh Bandu Bandong is very repetetitive and has very avant garde piano and guitar. It's somewhat difficult to listen to, it's the most experimental song on the album. The album ends on a bright note with All This Crazy Gift of Time, featuring some lovely harmonica.

Overall this is a good album but not a must have unless your into Canterbury or eccentric British songwriters. Ayers would go on to make much better work. A good starting point indeed, but don't expect his best work. 3 stars.

The Wizard | 3/5 |


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Share this KEVIN AYERS review

Social review comments () BETA

Review related links

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.