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Ariel - Goodnight Fiona CD (album) cover



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3 stars By the time of this album, Ariel had reverted to being a five-piece two guitars and keyboards band - and in so doing had lost the hard rock edge of the previous album. Nor did they return to the proggier approach of the first album. This is straight pop/rock, albeit sophisticated pop/rock, with witty lyrics, well arranged and played by excellent musicians. However, since it displeases both the original prog fans and the later hard rock fans, this album tends to get a bad rap, which I think is unfortunate. Glyn Mason has joined on second guitar, and also shares lead vocals and songwriting duties, being responsible for about half the album. New keyboardist Tony Slavich eschews the layered multi-keyboard approach of his predecessor, sticking to piano and organ, but he's a consistently interesting player, even when approaching an otherwise-straight boogie number like "Cypherland Blues". Rudd's humour remains intact, particularly on the title track which is the best (and funniest) anti-nuclear song I've ever heard.

So it's not prog, but it's not bad on it's own merits, and it's such an improvement on Rock & Roll Scars I think it merits a higher rating than that album. Hence 3 stars

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Posted Wednesday, April 11, 2012 | Review Permalink

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