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Arthur Brown's Kingdom Come - Kingdom Come CD (album) cover


Arthur Brown's Kingdom Come

Psychedelic/Space Rock

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3 stars This is Arthur BROWNn's second album with KINGDOM COME, a self-entitled album released in 1972. So you don't confuse it with any other band called KINGDOM COME (such as the '80s band), look for the album cover that has a crescent and star, and this is the album you'll be looking for. Things have changed in the KINGDOM COME lineup since the release of "Galactic Zoo Dossier". Bassist Desmond Fisher, and synthesizer player Julian Paul Brown are now out of the picture, leaving BROWN, guitarist Andy Dalby, keyboardist Michael "Goodge" Harris, and drummer Martin "Slim" Steer to find a new bassist, in this case Phil Shutt.

To me, I felt this album was bit of a disappointment compared with "Galactic Zoo Dossier". Certainly the album isn't bad, it just lacks the energy and punch of its predicessor (or it's successor). In fact, the opening cut, "Water" seems to exist to be atmospheric and little else. But luckily most of the rest of the album is better, like the ever catchy "Love is a Spirit", the twisted "City Medoly" and "The Experiment". As KINGDOM COME was a more democratic band than THE CRAZY WORLD OF ARTHUR BROWN, Arthur wasn't the only one handling the vocals as Andy Dalby also does some vocal duties, like on the acoustic part of "The Experiment". Perhaps the most outrageous (as well as tasteless) part of the album is near the end of "The Experiment" where Arthur BROWN literally sings: "I used to get up early in the morning/and listen to the rumbling of my bowels", complete with very crude sounds. Also of interest is the Mellotron makes it's very first appearance on an Arthur BROWN album, that is "Hymn" and the end part of "Water" (don't worry, "Kingdom Come"'s followup album uses the Mellotron much more extensively). The last song on the album, "Hymn" just sounds too gospel-y for my liking, and I thought that song, as well as "Water", were the album's low point, making it a bit uneven, but the rest is quite good material. Just whatever you do, when you get in to Arthur BROWN's KINGDOM COME material, make this your last purchase.

Report this review (#31629)
Posted Thursday, June 24, 2004 | Review Permalink
3 stars Of the 3 Kingdom Come records the least interesting. My personal pick for#1 is Journeys, then Galactic Zoo Dossiers. Journeys has all the flow and wonder of a liquid trip to the stars. the harmonies and textures are what true Psych is made of, and the themes and drama are real-deal Prog. Like the above, save this for a completeist fit, and go for Journeys.
Report this review (#40666)
Posted Wednesday, July 27, 2005 | Review Permalink
Sean Trane
Prog Folk
3 stars AB'sKC's second album is rather a miss than a hit, but could they have repeated the success of Galactic Zoo? Revolving personnel was a problem as was also the fact that Arthur Brown was not the only sionger. Do not get me wrong: dalby's vocals are correct , just that they do not match Arthur's.

Although the music is still mind-blowing psychadelia laced in with Emerson-like KBs , we have not the same kind of lunacy that made Galactic Zoo (or the future Journey) such an endearing album. Yes, Love Is A Spirit does have Brown theatric vocals and Scientific Experiment has weirdness all the way down from the scatologic ending state of his bowels , Yes you look around for the police car about to stop you for listening to the album.Yes , you are about to head for masss at the sound of the bell and this is extremely well recorded , but it lack a little "je-ne-sais-quoi" to make it a real interesting album.

Please note that the track oprder is different on the Lp than on Cd releases. The never impressive Voiceprint label CD edition mentionned above has the booklet not even mentioning the bonus track. Start with Galactic Zoo and jump to Journey before touching this album!

Report this review (#47757)
Posted Thursday, September 22, 2005 | Review Permalink
3 stars Depending on your taste; Kingdom Come's eponymous second output might be better than you are led to believe! I have to admit that Water, Love is a spirit, City melody, & Traffic light song are, IMO, pure [&*!#] (must be why they were pushed back on the cd's tracklist.)! But The teacher, The experiment, & The whirlpool are some of the most chaotic and well executed pieces Brown ever released. The hymn is, well, after a bizarre spoken intro, a hymn a la theatrical power ballad.

Even with all of the filler material on this album The teacher, The experiment, & The whirlpool are way better than anything on tha drum-machine driven "Journey".

Report this review (#106365)
Posted Sunday, January 7, 2007 | Review Permalink
4 stars Second outing from Mr Brown's 70's outfit. Slight personell shift on this one saw fewer members contributing. Still contained the excellent organ and guitar showmanship of Goodge Harris and Andy Dalby respectively, which is vital to the sound.

Although not quite as good as the previous release (a tough one to beat), there are some great moments here. Still the 'crazy' aspect remained, but the overall feel has been fused with very 'anthemic' sounding tracks and a nod towards ballads as well. For example check out Love is a Spirit. This actually sounds relatively conventional, even for Arthur's standards. Much of the experimental side of the band remains though. Like on the track aptly named The Experiment, which features a load of song snippets put together to form one lengthy disjointed piece. Interesting stuff! Guitar solos are more prominent here than the last release, an excellent solo closes the LP.

Not quite as good as the first one, but still well worth investigating and possibly the best LP to introduce yourself if you havent already heard this excellent band.

Report this review (#126476)
Posted Thursday, June 21, 2007 | Review Permalink
3 stars This is Arthur Brown's second album with the Kingdom Come crew, albeit with a few personnel changes. For some reason, the CD reissue reverses the playing order of what were Side 1 and Side 2 of the original LP, which is inane, if for no other reason than if you don't hear Traffic Light Song first (which was Side 1 Track 4), nothing on what was Side 2 will make what little sense it does!

All that being said, this is a marked dropoff from the brilliance of Galactic Zoo Dossier. The opening cuts -- Water and Love Is The Spirit -- are slower songs, which isn't the forte of this band. City Melody is nice organ-driven prog, but nothing special. Traffic Light Song is the segue to Side 2, which is where the good stuff lies. The Teacher sets things up, then we get to the two classic tracks on the LP: A Scientific Experiment and The whirlpool. This is more what one would expect from the band: an unfathomable time signature, great organ and guitar, bizarre lyrics, and general madness. This is 5 star stuff, a worthy follow-up to GZD, but in the end we get The Hymn, with its admirable though naive lyrics and a so-so Andy Dalby guitar solo.

I'd love to give this a 5, based on what's best here, but realistically this only rates a 3; still I would say it should be a part of any comprehensive collection of early-70s prog.

Oh, to complete the lyrics quoted by Proghead: And as my sphincter was yawning/that's when I practiced my open vowels...

Report this review (#130643)
Posted Saturday, July 28, 2007 | Review Permalink
4 stars The 3rd album by Arthur Brown and his acid infused band of Merrymen showcasing their strange prog/psych tendencies to the max ! Songs dip and doodle from the bizarre to the strange in that certain Arthur Brown style. Musically these guys were something special for sure.....Just listen to the track "A Scientific Experiment featuring the lower Colonic Irrigation" (highlight of the album for me) as it offers a bit of just about everything. The album is chaulked full of surprises ...from church mass to Zappa-esque instumentation to Canterbury tales with the end results feeling something like a mild ode to Jethro Tull's "A Passion Play" masterpeice.
Report this review (#223871)
Posted Monday, June 29, 2009 | Review Permalink
3 stars Whatever the band in charge, the genius behind the scene is the great and totally disjointed Arthur Brown. I am old enough (unfortunately) to have seen him in his first musical incarnation with a funny "Fire" video movie from 71.

This album is quite challenging and far from any easy approach to main stream music. On the contrary, this will demand quite an open mind to be accepted. To be fully honest, I was not in contact with this album at the time of release and my review is based on some later presumptions.

Still, some forty years after its release, this album shows unbelievable creative peaks. But that's the Arthur Browne world of music. I really would have liked to see him live during his latest tour at the Spirit of 66 some months ago. Maybe next time?

The combination of psyche/rock is best reached during the excellent "City Melody". A unique combo of experimental, heavy and totally crazy adventure. Maybe just a standard for this above than average creative guy.

You can experience his creative skills and totally special approach while you'll be confronted with "Traffic Light Song". Some bands would need several albums to deliver such music, needing an orchestra or some lousy concept. Arthur is far above these matters. Such are genius, I guess. A highlight.

Now, don't get me wrong: I like the man for the souvenirs he left me in my mind and when I listen to such an album, I can only applaud. Quite a good album indeed. Not a masterpiece but some definite disjointed psychedelia.

Three stars.

Report this review (#255790)
Posted Saturday, December 12, 2009 | Review Permalink
3 stars KINGDOM COME Kingdom Come (1972) (Esoteric 2010 Re-issue) ***

This album has all the hallmarks of an `acid' album, this is confirmed in the sleeve notes as indeed being the case. It was recorded in the rural splendour of Rockfield Studios in 1972. This is Arthur's `water' album, it is sadly not as striking as his `Fire' suite, despite a very strong opening pair of tracks, and a killer closing piece. The way this album develops in the interim is ultimately frustrating, the acid seems to have opened up the portals a little too widely to let anything and everything come flooding in, and we get an uneasy amalgam of everything from light opera, sound effects, the Goons/Monty Python and even The Nice (a direct steal at one point from `For Example' on `City Melody'). The problem is that there are so many jump cuts and fragmentary episodes lasting not much more than a minute that it is difficult to comprehend what is going on at times, and the ultimate conclusion is that this work is so `all over the place' that what music there is really suffers under the weight of too much wackiness and kitchen sink interruptions. It's almost like they wrote two new minutes of music/dialogue a day, recorded it, and stuck it all together in the order in which it was written. Maybe that's exactly what they did.

The final and best section `The Hymn' finally allows the band to stretch out over a glorious mellotron chord sequence and 8 minutes with Andy Dalby soloing at the end a real highlight of the album, and one wishes there were more extended sections like this. On the whole though, the endless splices and sound effects get a little tiresome after a while, and at times it comes across more as a musical play for radio. Had it been commissioned by the BBC it might have made more sense in that context rather than as an album, but it is infused with a unique Englishness and as a melting pot representing the collective psyches of those who dropped out it is pretty much unfettered. It is simply impossible to imagine an album like this being made in any other year, and as a snapshot of what Kevin Ayers has termed `insane times' it is the real deal.

For those who have loved this album, it should be said that the re-mastering is exemplary, and the booklet is extensive and informative featuring photographs rescued from goodness knows where. The one in the centrefold has to be seen to be believed.

Report this review (#281158)
Posted Sunday, May 9, 2010 | Review Permalink
4 stars When I had spun the record for the first time I couldn't believe what I just had been put through. Totally off the wall, disjointed, insane and frankly quite impossible to penetrate. I was gobsmacked, confused and not impressed at all. Lycky, then, that I persevered and tried really hard finding the meaning behind all this ranting and raving.The point is that the album has alot to offer, if you are willing and able to dig through the rumble and chaos. At the end you will see or hear, as Howard Carter put it, wonderful things.

I came to understand the album through the track "Whirlpool", by way of Brown's strange sailor anthemish bit, or how to explain it. I listened to the beginning of the song several times, when I'd given up hope, and it stuck by me. After that the whole track and eventually the whole album unravelled it's secrets and the treasure was found.

When you've cracked the code the album it is strangely accessible, though fully impenetrable at first. The music is severely demented, yet so amazingly conceived it's blinding me. The british antics and references are definately to my taste and the ideas seemed to come flying by at crazy speed and in ever crazier numbers. There are a lot of sounds, bits and utter pieces joining in, making me wonder how on Earth you are able to concoct anything like this. The only real putdown, for me, is when Brown discusses his bowl movements accompanied by the band making silly, colonic noises. It is ridicilous and out of place, in fact it is below Brown I think. That put aside, the album is endearingly british, quirky, insane, utterly progressive and entertaining in every sense of the word.

As a result, I find "Kingdom come" being a true delight. While not worthy of five stars it is certainly an album of four, bright shining stars. From my first feelings of bewilderment and disgust, I am now amazed and in love with this album. There are tales of everything, to the sounds of folk, medieval, hard rock, amazing organ playing an progressive music of the highest caliber. Top notch! Sort of.

Report this review (#960503)
Posted Friday, May 17, 2013 | Review Permalink

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