Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography
The Church - Heyday CD (album) cover

HEYDAY

The Church

Prog Related


From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Bookmark and Share
maani
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Founding Moderator
4 stars [Fifth in a series] "Heyday" finds the band abandoning the straight-rock approach and again experimenting (mostly successfully) with their budding progressive sensibilities. From the opening measures of "Myrrh," the band incorporates all the elements that gave "Seance" such a different focus. Here is the lush, expansive atmosphere, the textured guitars and keyboards, the non-standard chord progressions, and most of all the confidence that their previous album ("Remote Luxury") clearly lacked. Slightly more straightforward, "Tristesse" is a nice love song with an interesting retro-60s sound. "Already Yesterday" is a strange concoction that almost defies categorization. Part retro-60s, part 80s pop, it does make interesting use of a vocoder. Their first (unexpected) hit - "Columbus" - is a Moody Blues-ish composition, with a wonderful mid-break full of syncopated percussion and guitar. "Happy Hunting Ground" is the band's second effort at keeping the "instrumental" alive in rock, and succeeds beautifully. Supported by a quasi-Native American rhythm, the bass and guitar play off each other for a while, after which the rhythm takes prominence, accompanied by violin, tremolo guitar, and a tasteful keyboard figure. (It is my second favorite Church instrumental.) You can tell that "As You Will" was not on the original album, as the "sound" is noticeably different: less "expansive," more high-ended, less progressive, less satisfying. "Tantalized," on the other hand, brings us back to the original album with a "punch": an expansive atmosphere filled with a heavy, propulsive beat, great guitar work from Koppes, Beatle-esque horns, great keyboards, an off-time chorus, and a wild break. Along with "Myrrh," my fave on the album. "Disenchanted" is a slightly Bowie-ish composition, combining all the elements now becoming standard in the The Church "sound," while giving a nod to their former sound. And the band is clearly having fun with it. "Night of Light" is a combination of Moody Blues and XTC, filtered through the band's increasingly unique sensibilities. "Youth Worshipper," the weakest track on the album, is an uneven amalgam of standard and non-standard approaches. Despite a promising opening, "Roman" (the last track on the original album) is also slightly weak. "The View" (originally the B side of "Tantalized") is a strange quasi-progressive pop song in a slight "Revolver" vein. "Trance Endings" is both pleasant and, ultimately, forward-looking with regard to the band's progression. Overall, after the misstep of "Remote Luxury," the band is coming closer to being fully "progressive," having chosen to abandon any pretense of deliberate "hit-making" in order to find the progressive voice they know is there.
Report this review (#5)
Posted Thursday, January 29, 2004 | Review Permalink
hdfisch
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars This is a very weak album of them and a big drop down compared to Seance. The songs are in fact all nice to listen, but nothing special with two exceptions that is Happy Hunting Ground which is a nice atmospheric instrumental track with great soundscapes and the last one which is a bit outstanding as well. But the rest is Indie Rock with jangling guitars garnished with some cheap sounding keyboards. At this time point the band was obviously not mature enough yet. One can hear in these two songs the potential they had but it was obviously not yet sufficient for a full very good album. This did not happen before Priest = Aura which was their first real progressive album in my view. For this effort I can't give more than 2 stars (for collectors only)!
Report this review (#7)
Posted Wednesday, February 2, 2005 | Review Permalink
5 stars From my point of view, artistiscally speaking, along their career The Church reached their top twice (commercially is a different story as it is known). The first time was with this album. Although in most of The Church albums you might find a song or two that don't get your feelings high, with is one this is not the case, at least for me. Even "Columbus", which might be the weakest song of the album is a rather enjoyable song.

From the very beginning this album we find pieces of undoubtfully high quality. "Myrhh" could be considered as one of their best intro songs ever made, alongside with "Aura" and "Fly", probably. "Tristesse" is a unique proof of melodic sensitivity, "Happy Hunting Ground" is one of their strongest and most original instrumentals and "Roman" is a powerful yet melodic and haunting rock piece.

It is true that maybe this album is not, by far, one of their darkest albums, it is full of high beat and moving songs like "Tantalized" or "Youth Worshiper" but that doesn't have to be a bad thing. The Church wanted to give this album this character and they developed a masterpiece in the end.

So, for those who are in the beginning of exploring The Church's music (it is probable that they had begun with "Starfish", I did it that way at probably almost everyone), this album should be one the first checkouts. A highly recommedable album indeed.

Report this review (#52322)
Posted Wednesday, October 19, 2005 | Review Permalink
ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars The hypes and stripes are all gone, for sure.

The band released some very good albums in their early days, but to tell the truth, their previous "Remote Luxury" was less than average. This "Heyday" effort is not a great one either.

Some second hand pop tunes for most of the album. Performing at best, but shy of being models. Of course, the music available was performed in the middle eighties (you know what I' Am talking about) and it is not the best one we have ever acknowledged.

I am lacking though the fantasy that this band showed during their debut ("Of Skins & Heart"). A fantastic album which, unfortunately, won't have any of its kind released later on.

But, apart from the giants we all love, who could release three great albums in this category? I guess little other bands. This is a good album after all. A song as "Happy Hunting Ground" should reconcile most of the progheads and fans of "The Church" but this isn't a thrilling story either. Pleasant. OK.

This is far from being their best album: the music displayed holds some fine tunes or moments but globally, very few highlights can be considered. It is just a very long (over sixty minutes) album with little passion.

Two stars is the limit for this one. Once, "The Church" held some great expectation and passion to my heart. But it seems all gone by now. I guess that a song as "Disenchanted" got it all. Unfortunately.

If ever you would like to discover some more prog during this album; I would only recommend to forget about it. This album doesn't hold anything prog at all. Just a collection of new wave arithmetic. Nothing bad for sure; but hell! Nothing great either.

All in all, this album is just deserving two stars. At this stage, "The Church" is not of any influence. This album is just a collection of average melodies. A good moment to share, for sure. To depict this as a great album is quite adventurous.

This is quite a deception as far as I'm concerned.

Report this review (#238701)
Posted Friday, September 11, 2009 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Not a bad pop album from THE CHURCH and you could say this was the stepping stone to international fame with their next album "Starfish". This is fairly dreamy with jangly guitars. Not a lot of dynamics at work here with the reserved vocals and that laid back sound but it has it's moments.

They do add some guest horns and strings at times.This works well with the instrumental "Happy Hunting Ground" where we get some atmosphere as well. "Myrrh" the opening track is a top three for me.The sound builds until the vocals arrive then it settles back. "Columbus" is another top three and my favourite. It's uptempo but also uplifting. "Disenchanted" is the other top three. A dreamy track that hits the spot. I like "Youth Worshipper" quite a bit as well.

I really like how this band sounds but this particular album seems to be lacking something.

Report this review (#321983)
Posted Tuesday, November 16, 2010 | Review Permalink
Warthur
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars The Church's Heyday is a brilliant artifact from a parallel universe where paisley shirts stayed cool right into the 1980s alternative underground. The album is wreathed in hefty wafts of a hippified gothic psychedelia atmosphere that's highly reminiscent of the sort of material that All About Eve were working with at around this time - indeed, there'd be a cross-pollination of personnel and ideas between the two bands in the near future precisely because they were working in such a similar area. For my money, Heyday is aptly named, because it represents the magnificent high water mark of the Church's extensive 1980s output.
Report this review (#1602673)
Posted Sunday, August 28, 2016 | Review Permalink

THE CHURCH Heyday ratings only


chronological order | showing rating only

Post a review of THE CHURCH Heyday


You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: JazzMusicArchives.com — jazz music reviews and archives | MetalMusicArchives.com — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.