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Fruupp - The Prince of Heaven's Eyes CD (album) cover

THE PRINCE OF HEAVEN'S EYES

Fruupp

Symphonic Prog


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lewisoutrider
4 stars Fruupp always improved. This, their third album, is more polished than earlier offerings but falls a little short of the more consistant fourth (and final) album "Modern Masquerades"- we can only ponder on what might have been if they had explored further. I think they were a little unlucky not to get into every prog record collection but perhaps it somehow adds to their charm. If you liked "Trespass" by Genesis then give these guys form the emerald isle a try. Interesting vocals.

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#3108)
Posted Saturday, January 10, 2004 | Review Permalink
Sean Trane
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Prog Folk
3 stars Fruupp's second album (released on the now-collectible Dawn label) comes with another fantasy-influenced artwork, but this one is even more naïve than those by bassist Farrelly on the debut and third album. While fruup always remained rather pleasant, they never invented warm water and musically were completely derivative: their main influences were clearly Genesis, but the end results sound like second-league

The short Prince Of Darkness is simply too Gabriel's Genesis-like (especially the vocal delivery), but remain one of the tracks I will retain for the highlights of the albums along with the almost 10-min two-parts Perfect Wish and its cheesy piano ala Clayderman. The rest of the tracks always failed to raise an interest or an eyebrow. Guitarist McCusker, being the main writer, has clearly songwriting limits or more likely a very limited amount of fresh ideas. Houston was also not using enough of his wind instruments capabilities to spice up the plain (dare I say bland?) songwriting.

Not really an improvement on their debut, this album remains slightly inferior to the two albums surrounding it, but let that not frighten you, it is still a worthy Fruupp album, IF you are into them.

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Send comments to Sean Trane (BETA) | Report this review (#3109)
Posted Tuesday, March 02, 2004 | Review Permalink
loserboy
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars My first FRUUPP album was actually a compilation album titled "Songs For A Thought" which featured a few tracks from this album and right then I knew this band was for me. FRUUPP's music is very melodic and varied mith a mix of influences ranging from the aspects of The BEATLES to GENESIS. Once again this album is centered around the keyboard work of Stephen Houston with lush mellotron-string atmospheres and melodic piano. Peter Farrelly's unique characteristic vocals really helps shape the unique sound of FRUUPP and offers a unique contrast to other lead singers. Martin Foye's drums and Vincent Mc Cusker's guitars are also quite superb and add some great musicianship. FRUUPP will be most remembered for their little highly sculptured folky-prog songs scented in their own unique characteristics and style. With unique charm and style, FRUUPP cleverly mix oboe, flute with piano, vocals guitar, bass and percussion creating an aura of progressive originality.

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Send comments to loserboy (BETA) | Report this review (#3110)
Posted Saturday, March 20, 2004 | Review Permalink
lor68
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars By means of this issue they reached their complete maturity!!. In fact their sound, moving to such light symphonic music, had completely taken shape and they were ready to become the true dignified successors of the early progressive GENESIS.

Highly recommended, as an original and fresh work!!

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Send comments to lor68 (BETA) | Report this review (#3111)
Posted Thursday, April 01, 2004 | Review Permalink
2 stars A mediocre recording, this album suffers mostly from poor compositional skills, and awful vocals. This is a very frustrating record to listen to because the band obviously has musical skills and imagination and an easily identifiable style, but the songwriting is not up-to-par, making most of the songs weak and forgetable. Overall, they rely too much on pop song structures, hemmed in by some progressive sounding passages. Otherwise, the production is excellent and arrangements are good as well. Like another reviewer said, it's good but lame and nothing about this music stands out except the terrible singing. For prog rock completists only, most prog fans will not miss anything if they do not have this album, and in fact would be better off without it.

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Send comments to EMinkovitch (BETA) | Report this review (#3112)
Posted Thursday, January 06, 2005 | Review Permalink
hdfisch
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars In fact I fully agree to my co-reviewer Eliott that this is a very poor album in terms of progressive rock. The first one I got into my hands from them was Future Legends and I was completely fascinated by it and in the naive hoping that everything by Fruupp would sound similar I tried to get every album by them. Fortunately I did not have to buy them to have a listen. My god what a disappointment, especially by this record. Not everything on it is bad, don't get me wrong. But there are so many songs sounding just awfully pop-ish or "Prog-light-ish" and the vocals are really terrible. There is not any song that stands a comparison to their fantastic debut, which was obviously their masterpiece, as far as I listened to their other albums. IMHO it can't even compared with music by THE BEATLES, it would be a disgrace for them because they had some songs which were much more progressive than any on this record. Sometimes there are some cheap more poppy adaptations of classical themes but everything doesn't have the high quality of their debut. Really a pity for this band because the skills obviously were present but it seams for some (monetary) reason they decided to take this way what did not help them either to become more famous. For collectors only definitely!

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Send comments to hdfisch (BETA) | Report this review (#3113)
Posted Thursday, February 03, 2005 | Review Permalink
4 stars Bought this and all the other Fruup albums when they were released in the 70's. This particular album came with a story booklet to go with the album's music. Never heard the CD version so I can't comment on that, but the vinyl version portrays a warmth that must be lost when it was digitised.I would recommend this album to anyone into prog and suggest they listen to the others as well.

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Send comments to chrisk (BETA) | Report this review (#3114)
Posted Friday, April 22, 2005 | Review Permalink
prog-zilla@ya
1 stars I used to have a copy of that, but I threw it out in disgust - this is one of the worst progressive rock albums ever - partly to blame is the horrendous, I repeat - horrendous singing, and partly the dull, uninspired songwriting that just does not go beyond crappy pop, with a few progressive flourishes. Overall it's a very lifeless recording that does not do anything to advance the "progressive cause".

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#3115)
Posted Friday, April 22, 2005 | Review Permalink
boazrush@hotm
1 stars It is true what they say... this is a classic case of a "Poor Mans (great band)". This time, Genesis - it is with out a spark, it is Dull, it has no life in it, nothing that will make you want to play it agian, beside playing it agian to understand "what have i missed ?". well... you missed nothing... its crap. Frupp first one is the one to get (if you are a prog collector like me), and that one as well gets 3.5 start, on a good day.

the album Cover is beutifull thou, so you might want the lp just for that. forget the cd.

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#3116)
Posted Saturday, April 23, 2005 | Review Permalink
1 stars This is the kind of band that would be seated at the kiddie table in any serious '70s prog reunion. Their stock in trade seems mostly to be insipid, saccharine sweet ballads with corny lyrics and really weak vocals. If you're into that sort of thing -- well, this is the band for you! (But what are you doing on this site?)

They sound kind of like Genesis -- except without the Gabriel, Collins & Co.'s compositional skills, dynamic vocals, ability to play their instruments, or a point to their music.

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Send comments to Ruglish (BETA) | Report this review (#37017)
Posted Sunday, June 19, 2005 | Review Permalink
bristolstc@ya
5 stars Actually, this was Fruupp's THIRD record. Their second was the equally phenomenal Seven Secrets, but for me The Prince of Heaven's Eyes is the peak album for the band. A bit of background information- were Fruupp not from strife and war torn Northern Ireland who escaped to England in the early 70s they would be one of the best British melodic progressive bands, but their being Irish makes them one of the best bands on an international, not specifically British level. That said, Fruupp despite occaisonally straying into Celtic influenced melodies and legends had a very English sound that changed by the time of this record. The first album Future Legends is rough and ready heavy progressive acid rock with lots of wild vocals and guitar soloing. Seven Secrets combines that with softer passages, and for The Prince Of Heaven's Eyes Fruupp are soft, wistful, sad, and dream-like for the whole album. Opening track "It's All Up Now" has some beautiful keyboard instrumentation and honey sweet, but not too sacharine vocals on top of floating melodies not unlike Selling England By The Pound period Genesis or Camel. "Prince Of Darkness" is more Genesis influenced prog with Fruupp's very own sound added- especially Peter Farrelly's voice- high, floating, quavery, otherworldly. The rest of the album takes the basic themes of these first two tracks and expands on them mightily well. "Annie Austere" is a great track full of driving guitars and expert drumming from Martin Foye. The lyrics to this song are half humourous making a welcome change from self-serious garbage such as England's horrible Garden Shed album- the worst pseudo prog record of all time! I only bring that up as Fruupp are the polar opposite of the band England, not the country England. Here the influence of early Genesis isn't copying, just an influence. All of Side Two is where the album really comes to life and this being a concept album it makes sense that like Asgard from England each song gets better and better until a great finale. Fans of heavier progressive rock would probably prefer the first two albums, but I'm gonna go with this along with those as an album and a band who should be remembered for creating rich, inventive, complex, melodic, smooth, and creative progressive rock with a trippy edge that for their entire career made them an overlooked classic. This is a really great album, and one that I completely love from start to finish.

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#54059)
Posted Sunday, October 30, 2005 | Review Permalink
2 stars I agree with the majority view on this one.

At their best, Fruup were a second generation, third-rate response to the genuine innovations of the likes of King Crimson and Genesis.

Being well-meaning and genuine doesn't quite compensate for a conspicuous lack of musical ability, a poor production and generally unmemorable compositions.

Sounding more like a fifth-form school band on their debut outing, this is good as any of the band's albums and, unsurprisingly, that isn't a recommendation.

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Send comments to The Sea Priest (BETA) | Report this review (#56194)
Posted Sunday, November 13, 2005 | Review Permalink
Carl floyd fan
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars There seem to be mixed reviews thus far which is understandable. Obviously this is inspired by Genesis but most music is inspired by something that came before it, so the matter of Genesis inpiration is moot. When its all said and done this is symphonic rock with a nice Irish flair and very melodic at that. Their are lots of emotion and sincerity behind the vocals and lush arangements. Nothing complex, but it works. Maybe some people were to busy complaining about vauge genesis references but this is also, quite the concept album with interesting/moody lyrics and beautiful keyboard passages on the opening and closing tracks with above average guitar work and drums. PoHE is a 4 star album on the strength of its orginal expansion of genesis sound and unique lyrics.

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Send comments to Carl floyd fan (BETA) | Report this review (#56197)
Posted Sunday, November 13, 2005 | Review Permalink
Trotsky
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars I'm really not fond of the direction that Fruupp's music took after the promising debut Future Legends. Instead of progressing to the exciting symphonic sound often hinted at on that album, the band settled for a mix of cheesy, almost show-tune pop and meandering passages that flatter only to deceive. In fact, they arguably got worse with each succeeding album!

The vast majority of this third album is rather lame. Even though lead vocalist/bassist Peter Farelly's voice has improved just a tad since the debut, the songs are weaker, possibly reflective of the fact that keyboardist Steven Houston started writing a majority of the material. It's All Up Now, Prince Of Darkness and Annie Austere (on which Farelly's voice painfully recalls that of The Nice/Refugee vocalist Lee Jackson) are among the most annoying and least progressive tracks that Fruupp ever cut. As for Crystal Brook, it's really just a lullaby that might have worked on a better album, but which functions as a sedative here.

What saves this album is the mellow yet emotionally charged Knowing You. Although it too is uneven, and drags slightly in the middle, there are enough points of interest (the mournful opening vocal melody, a flute solo by Farelly, a nice electric piano excursion from Houston and a big finish) to make this an engrossing song. The concluding piano ballad The Perfect Wish is also one of Fruupp's better tunes, but really it's too little too late. ... 42% on the MPV scale

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Send comments to Trotsky (BETA) | Report this review (#71065)
Posted Saturday, March 04, 2006 | Review Permalink
ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars I have a mixed feeling about "Fruupp". A good debut album and a follow-up which I really can not stand. Just hope that this one will belong to the former category.

And when you listen to "It s All Up Now" you immediately have the feeling that it will be so. It almost starts as "Pictures At An Exibition" and develops some marvelous symphonic moments. Gorgeous and melodic keys. Really sublime at times. Vocals are a bit naive but so smooth, so pleasant... This is a highlight not only of this album but for the whole of "Fruupp" 's work.

Not all the songs will be of that caliber of course. "Prince Of Darkness" is at times reminiscent of "Harold The Barrel" duirng the intro and outro. It has not the same power. But it is not too bad after all. After this, just press next to avoid the incredibely poor and dull "Jaunting Car". A totally useless instrumental.

But the truth is that the more this album advances, the more the feeling that only one wonder is featured emerges. The final of "Knowing You" though revives the good habits again. Just as "Crystal Brook" : a beautiful and delicate song. Very nice fluting and piano. Admirable melody, full of sweetness. The "Genesis" filiation is more than a feeling and "Camel" is not far either during the second half of the song. Another highlight.

From the last part of the album, only "The perfect Wish" deserves a mention. the longest track of this effort. Fully symphonic. It features some very pleasant but short guitar breaks. Some "Watcher" riff as well. It changes from mood several times which makes it the most sophisticated song of the whole (not talking about complexity here : "Fruupp" music is straight-forward, simple and accessible). It is the third highlight.

This album is much more pleasant than their previous release. I am somewhat reconciliated with the band. Three stars.

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Send comments to ZowieZiggy (BETA) | Report this review (#145969)
Posted Friday, October 19, 2007 | Review Permalink
Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars No pot of gold, but a definite improvement

The prince of heaven's eyes was the final album by the original Fruupp line up, although one more album would be recorded by the band before they disappeared forever. Here we have a true prog concept album, the story relating to a character (Mud Flanigan) and his quest to search Ireland for the end of the Rainbow (which we all know is actually in Kansas!). It is fair to say though that the story is incidental to the album, and of little relevance.

The subdued nature of the band's second album is addressed to some extent here, this release having far more life and inspiration. Once again, we must acknowledge the Genesis influences which are as apparent as ever here. On Prince of darkness for example, the vocals are decidedly Gabriel-esque. This and the following jaunting car have a frivolity to them which has been distinctly lacking in the band's efforts up to this point.

Annie Austere keeps the upbeat nature of things going for a third consecutive track. By now it is becoming apparent that the penance for enjoying greater vigour in the tracks is a reduction in the prog content. The songs here are far more commercially orientated than on previous albums, to the extent that there are actually potential singes here. There remains a competence in the performances of course, but the challenge in musical terms is diminished substantially.

The latter part of the album reverts more to the style of the previous Seven secrets although even here Crystal brook has a degree of energy which as almost universally lacking on that album. The longest track, The perfect wish, features some fine mellotron sounds and some pleasant if rather easy listening style piano. The song is actually in two distinct parts, the latter section being quite different to the first. The developing mellotron soaked crescendos make for a fine climax to the album.

In all, a definite improvement on Seven secrets, which sees the band regaining the quality of Future legends. While there is a definite reduction in the overall prog content, this remains nevertheless a worthy prog album.

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Send comments to Easy Livin (BETA) | Report this review (#161341)
Posted Saturday, February 09, 2008 | Review Permalink
ClemofNazareth
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Prog Folk Researcher
3 stars Fruupp are a little hard to describe without comparing them to other bands, but as it turns out that’s okay because they certainly developed a sound that was based on that of many of those same bands. Guitarist/vocalist Vincent McCusker has acknowledged a debt to Genesis, not at all surprising considering when and where the band evolved. This is evident in the peculiar storytelling style of the band and in McCusker’s vocal cadence. There’s also more than a little Gong in the band’s loose and slightly irreverent compositions. And I’d go so far as to say there’s some Gentle Giant mixed in here as well, not so much musically as in the informal mood of the whole package of this album. All good stuff though, and an enjoyable album to listen to even if these are not exactly chamber-quality musicians. McCusker cut his teeth in a circus after all, not in austere recital halls.

The story line for this album was written by the band’s manager, and it tells the tale of one Mud Flanagan, a rather naïve little fellow off on an adventure to find the pot of gold at the end of his rainbow (aren’t we all?). In the process he learns a little about life and mankind and presumably himself, as well as having a bit of a fling with one of the fairer sex. The lyrics would make a good bedtime story for your kids.

I’m not sure what to say about the music itself, other than it is a little bit laid back, not very complex or epic, but as easy to listen to as a comfortable jacket is to wear. I played this several times recently on a long road trip and it kept me alert and tapping my foot a bit, which I consider a solid endorsement.

Stephen Houston would leave after this album to become a Franciscan monk or Jehovah’s Witness or some such thing, and the band would hang it up following their next release (which is similar but a bit folksier than this one).

If there’s a highlight here it is probably the ten-minute album climax “The Perfect Wish”, which features keys aplenty and a playful guitar/piano progression punctuated by oboe that is as distinctive and unique a sound as the band manages on the entire album. This one could easily go onto a seventies symphonic rock retrospective album without raising any eyebrows. The closing “Prince of Heaven” wanders back into Peter Gabriel territory but also emphasizes electric guitar along with animated piano and synthesizers. The production on this one is a bit louder with more treble than the rest of the album which gives it a slightly rushed feel, but it makes for an appropriate ending to young Flanagan’s journey, so there’s that at least.

I love the artwork on the album by the way, even if it is almost embarrassingly child-like and naïve. It seems altogether appropriate for the music it encases.

This is a modest album released just past the peak of seventies progressive music’s heyday. It doesn’t hold up as timeless, but for many progressive music fans it would make for a respectable addition to their collection. Three stars seems fair, and a modest recommendation if you are the sort of music lover who appreciates all those bands I called out in the first paragraph.

peace

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Send comments to ClemofNazareth (BETA) | Report this review (#169621)
Posted Friday, May 02, 2008 | Review Permalink
Tarcisio Moura
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars Not really convincing. that's the impression this album gave me after repeated listenings I started to look for Fruupp albums after reading about them here on PA. And I could find a band that has excellent musicians, no doubt about that. Vocal is only fair, but that's not really the problem. The songwriting is very derivative. While their songs are nice and mildly interesting, they don't really grab my atention all the time. In other words, the band does not hold its own personality. They were not capable of outgrowing their influences and have a sound of their own. Neither were they capable of wirting anything really memorable.

I guess I like this album more than their last, Modern Masquerades, but still I was not convinced. Fortunalty I din't have to buy them, I just borrwoed them from a friend. Fruupp is, in my opinion only, one of those groups that play well, has good musicians (Stephen Houston is a great keyboards player) and have the right influences, but lacks both the chops on songwriting and on originalty to make all this display of musical virtuosity into something that is more than the sum of its parts.

Rating: 2,5 stars.

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Send comments to Tarcisio Moura (BETA) | Report this review (#192892)
Posted Saturday, December 13, 2008 | Review Permalink
DamoXt7942
FORUM & SITE ADMIN GROUP
Moderator / Psych / Avant / Neo Teams
4 stars EXAGGERATED SOUND I LOVE...always their songs let me say that phrase.

Good or not, Fruupp may overforce their sound and style. As I say honestly, orchestrated hit and beat followed the fade-in-opening of the album make me smiley. Why do I get so? I suggest their over- potential for music is around the work. They tried hard to tell the story named The Prince of Heaven's Eyes, and the passion of storytellers (Fruupp) is brought into all of fans. Indeed it's possible for me what they did and meant in the album, but their passion is too exaggerated to let all listeners know well. I'm afraid, especially the orchestrated sounds are a bit noisy rather than effective for listeners...anyway, I love the exaggerated sound, of course.

For estimated prog-appreciation, I suggest 4 stars are suitable for the work. How do you think?

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Send comments to DamoXt7942 (BETA) | Report this review (#194896)
Posted Wednesday, December 24, 2008 | Review Permalink
UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars The Prince of Heaven's Eyes is the third full-length studio album by Irish symphonic progressive rock act Fruupp. I´ve enjoyed the first two albums by the band Future Legends (1973) and Seven Secrets (1974), but never found them more than average for the genre so I was interested to learn if they would impress me a bit more with their third effort.

The music is in the same style as on the first two albums by the band. Symphonic progressive rock in the British tradition. Bands like Genesis, Beggar´s Opera and Greenslade should give you an idea of how this music sounds. Unfortunately the music on this album does not hold the high standards of Genesis and my feelings towards Fruupp as a very average band in the genre doesn´t change with this album either. Their biggest problem is lack of identity in their music IMO. If I heard their music being played and didn´t know from the start that it was them playing I wouldn´t be able to recognise that it was them. All songs on the album are good, melodic and symphonic, but none really stick in my head and it is in the songwriting department the band is weakest.

The musicianship is good and the warm and pleasant seventies production is good and suits the music well.

The Prince of Heaven's Eyes is not an album I listen to very often and I will put Fruupp in the same catagory of second rate symphonic prog bands from the seventies as bands like Beggar´s Opera and Greenslade ( I prefer Greenslade though). Fruupp´s music is actually pretty good and pleasant but unfortunately unremarkable in the end. A 3 star rating is the most I can give this album and I might be a bit too kind.

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Send comments to UMUR (BETA) | Report this review (#210729)
Posted Wednesday, April 08, 2009 | Review Permalink
2 stars This is Fruupp's third album ? Gosh !!

This is a big step in the wrong direction from their excellent second album. The opening song It's All Up Now start as a mix of a European Song Contest tune, Las Vegas and Genesis. There is pretty nice middle piece on this song before it returns to Las Vegas. Even Elton John would not have touched this with a bargepole. The second song is Peter Gabriel in a nutshell. The rest of the track varies between Genesis, second rate pop music, The Beatles, folkhall music, AOR and European Song Contest material. There are some good symphonic prog pieces here. But the progress from Seven Secrets has been reversed and the band shunted into a sidetrack. I am so disappointed because I was really starting to like this band. I am not looking forward to review their fourth and final album.

2.5 stars

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Send comments to toroddfuglesteg (BETA) | Report this review (#248871)
Posted Sunday, November 08, 2009 | Review Permalink
Tom Ozric
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Fruupp's third album 'Prince Of Heaven's Eyes' is their 2nd release for the year of 1974 (busy lads), and whilst lacking in much of the free-spirited instrumental excursions of the previous 'Seven Secrets' album, displays a fresher, more up-dated sound. Immediately noticeable is keyboardist Stephen Houston adding a string ensemble to his regular organ/pianos set-up and lacing many of the arrangements with it. The majestic and grandiose guitar soloing of Vincent McCusker have taken a back seat for this keyboards-heavy adventure but bassist Peter Farrelly persists in playing his bass like a lead-guitar (no bad thing) and drummer Martin Foye has a great sense of dynamics and knows when to hold back or let loose. I suppose you could say I like the way these guys play. A lot. Now, I spent my birthday money for a pristine LP of this, but I didn't get the accompanying booklet which many copies contain. I figure the concept is of a young man going out on his own to discover the world and grow - maybe a tad twee and innocent, but sweet and original. Houston composed six of the eight tracks here (probably explains the keyboard dominance) although 2 tracks composed by McCusker are possibly the album's high points - 'Knowing You' is a lovely ballad featuring a touching passage where Houston's oboe is put to good use, and the lengthy 'Crystal Brook' is inspired, with an almost jazzy mid-section where Houston's subtle organ solo over a rumbling rhythm creates a tranquil atmosphere. I actually liked the way a previous reviewer described the opening track 'It's All Up Now'. Credit goes to band for successfully conveying the feeling of this young man setting off into the big, wide world. 'Prince Of Darkness' is an eccentric little tune of under 4 minutes, with galloping horses and a unique collage of sounds underpinning much of it. 'Jaunting Car' is possibly the weakest track, something akin to a romp through the country-side with a piece of straw stuck between the teeth..... 'Annie Austere' is a heavier track, and is the subject's love interest. Foye's drumming to the fore. 'Seaward Sunset' is a pretty piano/flute piece with an angelic sounding Houston on a very high falsetto vocal and the album's epic closer, 'The Perfect Wish' is almost 10 minutes of upbeat symphonic prog with classical flavours and a triumphant finale (.....and they all lived happily ever after.....). Actually, I really go for the heady jams of Seven Secrets a lot more than this, but Prince Of Heaven's Eyes is still worthy of 4 stars.

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Send comments to Tom Ozric (BETA) | Report this review (#249074)
Posted Sunday, November 08, 2009 | Review Permalink
baz91
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars A sublime concept album

Simply put, if you can listen to an album the whole way through multiple times and enjoy every moment, then that album is a masterpiece. Such words could be said of Fruupp's third album, 'The Prince of Heaven's Eyes'. Here is an album that's beautifully presented, well-balanced and stunningly original.

Yes, this is a concept album, but not just a vague one; an album that follows an actual story. The story itself can either be gleaned from the lyrics, or read in the 14 page booklet accompanying the album. The booklet, written by Paul Charles, is well-written and captivating, telling tales of a character named Mud Flanigan and his magical adventures in rural Ireland. It really is a very interesting read, and fleshes out the story much more than the music. The music, rather than telling the story again, is simply based on it, as if it were a soundtrack. According to the liner notes, there were disused songs that weren't included on the album, as they would have made it too long for vinyl. These songs would have probably fleshed out other parts of the story.

The music here is simply brilliant. The opening track It's All Up Now is a perfect, natural opening to this album. The instrumental introduction is exciting and progressive, whilst retaining beauty. When the singing begins, the bass line is absolutely wonderful. The lyrics, especially in the middle section, are classic. All in all, a great start to a great album.

The Prince Of Darkness is a short ditty, but nonetheless progressive. Peter Farrelly does an impressive job of sounding like two different people in order to express different points of view. His 'Prince of Darkness' voice sounds remarkably like Peter Gabriel's distinctive accent.

Jaunting Car is a short but sweet instrumental, with a synth effect that reminds me of the Pokémon games.

Annie Austere may be one of the best prog love songs I've ever heard (not that there are many). Arguably the best part of this song is the cute middle section, where Mud's lyrics are extremely romantic, and talk of marriage. This song finishes the first side of the album with a theme that is reprised at the beginning of the second side; a very neat trick indeed.

After hearing the afore-mentioned reprise, we hear the short yet romantic Knowing You. There's not much to say about this track, except that it provides a good introduction to the second side of the album.

Crystal Brook follows straight on from the preceding track, but at 8 minutes, this is a far more progressive affair. There's absolutely nothing about this track that I dislike: the instrumentals, the lyrics, the riffs, the solos, the dynamics, everything seems perfect here.

Seaward Sunset is a short track, which feels just a bit like filler, but is pretty enough to pass the time with. I'm not sure who sings here, but whoever it is can pull a very high voice. Very cute song.

The Perfect Wish is a song in two parts. After a lengthy Camel-esque instrumental comes some very progressive rhythms with singing over the top. The lyrics in the second half of the song remind me of Procol Harum. The track ends with a beautiful, powerful guitar solo that sends shivers down my spine. This is the kind of symphonic ending that I have no problem waiting 40 minutes to hear, because it is so good.

One funny thing about this album is the title itself. At first I interpreted it as The Prince belonging to Heaven's Eyes, rather than The Eyes belonging to the Prince of Heaven, but I soon realised my mistake. It is quite an ambiguous title, and a bit of a mouthful too. However, this mouthful has definitely filled me right up, as I could not be more satisfied by such an obscure album. Why Fruupp are such an obscure group I may never understand. I whole-heartedly recommend this album as a classic of Irish prog, and prog in general.

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Send comments to baz91 (BETA) | Report this review (#507009)
Posted Sunday, August 21, 2011 | Review Permalink
Warthur
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars I'd say this one is a notch above its predecessor, provided that as a listener you're happy with Fruupp steering away from the complex material of their debut album in favour of a style influenced strongly by musical theatre. Theatricality seems to be the main focus here - appropriately, since this seems to be a concept album - but unfortunately what this all too often results in is weak vocals and an excess of forced whimsy which is more likely to irritate than charm. Musically speaking, much of the material is significantly more simple than the band's previous output, and tends towards emotionally manipulative sentimentalism. On the whole, in fact, the album carries about it an aura of Trying Too Hard - trying too hard to be whimiscal and ending up being enervatingly twee, trying too hard to be emotional and ending up becoming sappy, and trying too hard to make a concept album because, well, everyone has to make a concept album, right?

On top of this, not only is the music less interesting this time around, but I also detect a hint of self-plagiarism. The Prince of Darkness is a jaunty tune about a demonic figure... but didn't they already do something like that on the debut with Lord of the Incubus? And wasn't that song much more interesting with its sudden instrumental breaks and its wild guitar? One rather suspects that the band went into the studio light on ideas yet again for this one - especially considering that they recorded this so soon after Seven Secrets - and without the concept to string things together they might not have been able to come up with anything at all.

If Fruupp hit the bottom of the barrel with Seven Secrets, The Prince of Heaven's Eyes is the sound of them making themselves comfortable down there rather than trying to climb out.

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Send comments to Warthur (BETA) | Report this review (#527375)
Posted Tuesday, September 20, 2011 | Review Permalink
2 stars Professional performance - poor progression...

The instrumentation is good and professional, acceptable arrangements, composition moderately good and excellent sound quality. Soft progressive and complacent, telling of a young man searching for happiness or rainbow. I expected much more of an Irish band. Nothing illustrates to highlight, especially without identity. The album is decreasing in interest over time and repeated listening. Some songs are a little better than others, but nothing excels. The vast tracks do not reach the expected significance. In fact, the shorter tracks are better, from my perspective.

Depending on musical tastes, some people enjoy it more than others. In the progressive field is not recognized and adhere to it.

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Send comments to sinslice (BETA) | Report this review (#997708)
Posted Saturday, July 13, 2013 | Review Permalink

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