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Burnin' Red Ivanhoe - M144 CD (album) cover

M144

Burnin' Red Ivanhoe

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.35 | 18 ratings

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hdfisch
Prog Reviewer
3 stars 3 ½ stars really for this example of early Danish Prog!

When BRI released their debut in 1969 the band existed already for two years. Thus it's not surprising that they've gathered already enough material to fill a double vinyl. Originally their music was rooted in bluesrock with a strong psyche folk influence as demonstrated in most of the shorter tracks. Dominated by organ and electric guitar with some flute or mouthorgan thrown in at times one could call their style here "The Doors meet Tull". Some (at least for me) weaker songs offer a rather quiet and ballad-esque folk with a slightly odd touch reminding sometimes to a kind of glee club for drunkens (especially on the CD-bonus). But this is showing just one face of them since the longer tracks (basically on the second vinyl) are revealing a quite different, much more progressive character. Versatile and intricate jazz and brass rock full of verve using a broad instrumentation and with great solos of flute or sax. Highlight of the album is most probably "Oyizl" coming close to free jazz. Unfortunately some of the tracks had been shortened to fit on the double CD. I'd wish the more or less redundant bonus songs would have omitted instead.

Here the ratings for the individual songs (without bonus):

Ivanhoe i Brøndbyerne (7/10) Ridder Rød (4/10) Saxophonepiece 1 (9/10) Marsfesten (4/10) Antique Peppermint (9/10) Indre Landskab (5/10) Jiizlou (7/10) Kaj (6/10) Tingel-tangelmanden (8/10) Læg dig kun ned (6/10) Saxophonepiece 2 (8/10) Medardus (6/10) Purple Hearts (5/10) Larsens (6/10) Oyizl (9/10) Ivanhoe in the Woods (7/10) Ida Verlaine (7/10) Sensitive Plant (5/10) Inside (7/10) Ksilioy (5/10)

Overall rating: 65 %

As a summary M144 is a very remarkable debut and especially for the year of 1969 a noteworthy album containing many of their best jazz rock tracks but as well quite a few average and some rather weak ones. Thus it can be considered rather as a nice collection of songs than as a coherent work. I don't see an urge to recommend it as an essential addition to a prog fan's collection though certainly interesting for collectors of obscure Danish proto prog. Personally I prefer their fellows Secret Oyster and to those who are completely new to BRI I'd like to recommend their self-titled one which I'd like to call their best though offering less quantity for its money of course.

hdfisch | 3/5 |

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