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Kaleidoscope - Faintly Blowing CD (album) cover





3.10 | 36 ratings

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Easy Livin
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars Under the influence

"Faintly blowing" was Kaleidoscope's second, and last album before changing their name to Fairfeld Parlour. The album is certainly a slight development from their first release, but the music is still firmly rooted in the pop of the late 60's.

The BEATLES, Pye era STATUS QUO, early MOODY BLUES etc., are all clearly major influences on the music of the band, and indeed the lyrics. Interestingly, this album actually resembles GENESIS first album "From Genesis to revelation" in a number of places, most noticeably "(Love song) For Annie". The echoed power pop choruses here sound very similar to the Jonathan King production.

Vocally, the band are strong though the lead voice needs frequent harmonising to maintain that strength. Those harmonies are very much of their time, the bonus track "Do it again for Jeffrey" sounding very like US harmony outfit FAMILY DOGG.

The BEATLES influence is probably strongest on "A story from Tom Bitz", a "Norwegian Wood" like fantasy tale which tells of a man who is lured by a mysterious lady to drink something potent. He ends up in jail where a cowboy persuades him to steal a horse, and so it goes on. I don't think Tom Bitz was the only one under the influence when it was written!

It is only when we come to the band's swan-song "Music" that we get any real hint of their potential, and even then the first half of the six minute piece is a fairly straightforward piece of pop with a bit too much phasing. Towards the end, the track disappears into a psychedelic cacophony with the chorus fading in and out, and a quick choral burst of "Hark the herald angels sing"! It is far from great, but it does show that the potential was there for the band to move on to more adventurous things.

Sadly though, time had run out for Kaleidoscope. A third album was released under the same name in the early 90's, which in reality was unreleased material by Farfield Parlour from the mid 1970's.

As for the quaintly named "Faintly blowing", it is little more than a good collection of late 60's pop songs. Pleasant but unremarkable.

Easy Livin | 2/5 |


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