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BALLS OF EYES

Placebo

Jazz Rock/Fusion


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Placebo Balls Of Eyes  album cover
3.06 | 14 ratings | 3 reviews | 14% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 1971

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Inner City Blues
2. Planes
3. You Got Me Hummin'
4. Humpty Dumpty
5. Aria
6. Showbiz Suite
7. Balls Of Eyes
8. Oh La La

Line-up / Musicians

- Marc Moulin / keyboards, synthesizers
- Nick Fissette / trumpet
- Richard Rousselet / trumpet, other horns
- Alex Scorier / saxes, flute
- Frans Van Dijk / trombone
- Johnny Dover / bass clarinet, saxophone, flute
- Francis Weyer / guitars bass
- Nick Kletchkovski / bass
- Freddy Rottier / drums, percussions

Releases information

LP CBS 64625 (1971)

Thanks to Sean Tranefuid=Sean Trane for the addition
and to ProgLucky for the last updates
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Buy PLACEBO Balls Of Eyes Music


Ball of EyesBall of Eyes
Ais 2011
$27.01
$35.64 (used)
Ball Of EyesBall Of Eyes
Music on Vinyl 2018
$21.30
$25.48 (used)

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PLACEBO Balls Of Eyes ratings distribution


3.06
(14 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(14%)
14%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(21%)
21%
Good, but non-essential (43%)
43%
Collectors/fans only (21%)
21%
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)
0%

PLACEBO Balls Of Eyes reviews


Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Sean Trane
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Prog Folk
4 stars The first album of Placebo was a real shock in Belgium, and nobody was really prepared for it. All that had come about before was a few proto-prog groups such as Waterloo, Wallace Collection (actually a pop outfit) and a few others. So 71 saw Arkham (who never released an album per se) and Placebo (Lagger Blues Machine was to follow the year after). Leader Marc Moulin was already a veteran by the time of this album, but this was his first project.

The sound on this album oscillates between Bitches Brew and Nucleus's debut on one side and Chicago Transit Authority on the other. If there are some really superb tracks on this album, it is also somewhat uneven with some rather surprising (and clumsy) covers of Marvin Gaye and Isaac Hayes, but clearly the highlights are the self-penned tracks. From the superb Aria with an infectious groove greatly underlined by Moulin's electric piano, to Planes with its superb semi-free jazz intro and impeccable crescendo, and Humpty Dumpty's haunting slow pace, this album is a slap in the face to most historians not knowing of this group. Showbiz Suite being another highlight, it is clear that Moulin was a bandleader in the jazz style, providing a great platform for the other musicians - the four-man horn section is plenty of frontman - so he stays content of providing the solid base (rarely taking the spotlight to himself at this point), but he is the chief composer and pulls of some real stunts in making his role quite interesting.

This album was released on the historical jazz CBS label and unfortunately there has never been a CD re-issue from them, but exists from Brit label Counterpoint a compilation that really takes the best tracks available on this Lp.

Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Placebo was basically the first effort of Belgian Jazz-Rock legend Marc Moulin (later a member of Cos and Aksak Maboul) to create and present his own arrangements under a personal project to the public.The started around 1969/1970 from Waterloo and recorded the first album ''Ball of eyes'' in 1971, released on CBS Records.More recently the album saw a CD re-issue by the Japanese label P-Vine Records.

With a large brass section consisting of a 4-piece trombone/ trumpet/ clarinet/ sax personel (among them Richard Rousselet of Julverne fame), additional members on guitars, bass and drums and of course Moulin on keyboards and piano, Placebo's debut seems not quite intricate or adventurous to speak the truth.Moulin's first effort relies a lot on smooth and relaxed jazzy arrangements with a melodic approach and very light interplays, quite accesible to say the least with only occasional and non-risky solos.The sound flirts at moments with Horn Rock in a BLOOD, SWEAT & TEARS vein with harmonic trombones and saxes but also with Funk and even Soul, especially when vocals are present.It is rather doubtful if such an easy-going sound will satisfy the progressive listener, however there are a couple of exceptions which deserve a specific mention like the short but nice ''Humpty Dumpty'', where the Canterbury-like guitars and electric piano meet the fine performance of the brass section, as well as the longest cut of the album ''Showbiz Suite'', a Canterbury-flavored piece with a definite SOFT MACHINE/HATFIELD AND THE NORTH edge, where the solos and instrumental battles are endless yet inspired, electric piano, saxes and bass are on the forefront and actually this is possibly the only piece in here prooving Moulin's great talent.

The album has some good moments to satisfy fans of Jazz-Rock,Horn Rock or Jazz-Fusion,but it is still very far from a demanding listening for the average progressive fan.Recommended only to lovers of the aforementioned closely related styles...2.5 stars.

Review by Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars This was the debut of Belgium's PLACEBO led by keyboardist Marc Moulin. Compared to the two studio albums that follow I feel this one is the weak link. Some commercial sounding material on this one and some variety as well. A seven piece at this point with four horn players. Marc adds electric piano, electric harpsichord, melodica and I believe some clavinet. And there are vocals on three tracks. This was released in 1971 and clocks in around 32 minutes.

"Inner City Blues" is a pretty good opener with vocals. I like how it starts with percussion and piano as vocal melodies join in along with bass and drums. Soon he's singing the lyrics but the vocal melodies aren't over yet. Flute before 1 1/2 minutes then more vocal melodies before a change arrives after 4 minutes. Not into this section with the high pitched vocals and piano but it's brief. Horns and drums take over to the end. "Planes" is beats, horns, keys, flute and more. It picks up after a minute as horns honk and the electric piano impresses.

"You Got Me Hummin'' is another vocal track and this one has a lot of soul in it. Piano and a beat to start then horns after a minute before the vocals arrive. Not really a fan of this one. "Humpty Dumpty" is a short but enjoyable instrumental where sounds beat and pulse as the horns come and go. "Aria" has to be my favourite. It opens with the sounds of children playing before a relaxed sound of bass, drums, keyboards and horns take over. Sounds like clavinet then flute before 4 minutes.

"Showbiz Suite" is the longest tune at 7 1/2 minutes. A laid back start with drums and piano before a variety of horns join in. This continues until we get a bass solo starting after 3 1/2 minutes lasting less than a minute before returning to that earlier sound. "Ball Of Eyes" has piano melodies throughout this 2 minute song. "Oh La La" is the one minute closer of someone singing the title of this track over and over. Sounds like an old school tune.

So a mixed bag for me but some nice highs on this one.

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