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Cherry Five - Cherry Five CD (album) cover

CHERRY FIVE

Cherry Five

 

Rock Progressivo Italiano

3.88 | 123 ratings

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stefro
Prog Reviewer
4 stars One of the country's few internationally-renowned outfits, the cult Italian group Goblin made their name producing stylishly creepy synth-prog soundtracks for legendary filmmaker Dario Argento, the director of such horror classics as 'Profondo Rosso'(1975) and 'Suspiria'(1977). However, before undertaking their collaborations with Argento, Goblin had previously produced an accomplished symphonic progressive rock album under the name of Cherry Five that was issued on the Italian Cinevox imprint during 1975. The album arrived several months after the group had returned home from London, the five-piece having failed to win a record deal from any of the British labels, and as a result exhibited a strong British influence obviously inspired by the likes of ELP, Genesis and Yes. It would provide a stark contrast to their later material as Goblin, with the 'Cherry Five' album featuring vocals and lengthy song-suites, yet would also provide a hint towards their blood-drenched future with such titles as 'The Swan Is A Murderer' and the Oscar Wilde-tribute 'The Picture Of Dorian Gray'. For those not in the know, Dorian Gray was a character in one of Wilde's only horror yarns, showcasing the Italian group's early affiliation for the genre that would eventually come to define them. Though this album was issed under the Cherry Five name, many see it as a Goblin product and, despite the stylistic differences, rightly so. The bulk of Goblin's work came in soundtrack form, yet they did release a pair of non-soundtrack albums during the latter half of the 1970's in the form of the excellent 1976 album 'Roller' and the less impressive 'Il Fantastico Viaggio Del Bagarozzo Mark' from 1978. Both albums exhibited streaks of Goblin's soundtrack work, especially 'Roller', yet also added strong elements of synthesized progressive rock, their sound flushed with snazzy keyboards and eerie effects. 'Cherry Five', with its intense instrumental flourishes, strong symphonic flavour and, at times, dazzling quickfire solos, makes for an exhilarating listen, especially so for Goblin fans, though those who enjoy the early-seventies work of the major British progressive rock groups should also find much to their liking. The album's highlights are many - almost every song is worth the price of admission thanks to an interconnecting musical flow that cleverly links one track to the next both stylistically and thematically - yet it is both the richly-drawn opener 'Country Graveyard' and the lengthy, jazz-tinged 'Oliver' that truly stand-out. Alongside the seminal soundtracks adorning both 'Profondo Rosso' and 'Suspiria' and the 1976 'Roller' album, this self-titled oddity remains one of the Italian group's key releases. Fans of symphonic prog in general are also in for a stylish, whirlwind-paced treat, the only disappointment being that Goblin/Cherry Five didn't make more full-on progressive rock albums. STEFAN TURNER, STOKE NEWINGTON, 2012
stefro | 4/5 |

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