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Focus - Hamburger Concerto CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.25 | 942 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Mr. Mustard
4 stars Hamburger Concerto is the second essential Focus album, and probably their greatest. There is a bit of a change of sound from Moving Waves, with the jazz fading slightly in favor for full on classical influence. Yet the Focus sound and crazy instrumental proficiency is still as present as ever.

The album opens with a short medieval-inspired introduction with 'Delitae Musicae' before seguing into 'Harem Scarem' a full on rocker very similar to what Hocus Pocus was on their second album. Though, it is very straightforward, and isn't anything you wouldn't expect from a classic rock band at the time.

'La Cathedrale De Strasbourg' is a delicate, yet powerful song with piano and underlying organ, playing some divine melodies.

'Birth' is a pretty diverse song, with the opening harpsichord lines leading into a groovier flute and guitar dominated part.

Of course the real meat here (excuse the pun) is the epic title track, 'Hamburger Concerto.' Like the band's previous epic in Eruption, Hamburger Concerto is a multi-part epic with a very diverse structure, but this one seems to be more, well, focused. It is mainly because much of the noodling of Eruption isn't present; instead the band took time to compose a masterpiece with a myriad of pleasant melodies and riffs, many of which are repeated throughout to give a sense of unity to the whole thing.

'Early Birth' revisits a few melodies to appropriately end a fantastic album. Overall, I would venture to say, in comparison to Moving Waves, Hamburger Concerto definitely has the stronger epic, while the former probably has the stronger "other" songs. Regardless, Hamburger Concerto is a solid album, and is perhaps the final hoorah from the Dutch proggers.


Mr. Mustard | 4/5 |


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