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Focus Hocus Pocus / Janis album cover
3.29 | 11 ratings | 3 reviews | 20% 5 stars

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Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, released in 1971

Songs / Tracks Listing

Side 1
Hocus Pocus ( 3:18 )
Side 2
Janis ( 3:09 )

Line-up / Musicians

Thijs Van Leer / organ, flute, vocal
Jan Akkerman / guitar
Cyril Havermans / bass
Pierre van der Linden / drums

Releases information

Ploydor 2001 211 ( 1971 )

Thanks to vibrationbaby for the addition
and to vibrationbaby for the last updates
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FOCUS Hocus Pocus / Janis ratings distribution

(11 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(20%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(40%)
Good, but non-essential (20%)
Collectors/fans only (20%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

FOCUS Hocus Pocus / Janis reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Guillermo
4 stars The Side One of this single has the edited version of "Hocus Pocus", FOCUS's most known song, which was a Hit in several countries in Europe and in the U.S. With a mixture of Heavy Rock guitar parts played by Jan Akkerman and very good drums played by Pierre van der Linden, with some humor by Thijs van Leer, with him playing organ, harmonium, flute, singing without lyrics, yodelling, whistling, and even laughing. I still laugh when I watch to some videos of the band playing this song live, because van Leer was making funny faces and sounds during the part of the song on which he sings and makes his yodelling. A funny song, which in this single edit really lacks some of the best moments. But anyway, it is also a good edited version. There was, at least in the U.S., a single which had this edit on Side One, but on Side Two it had an even faster version of this song, also shorter in lenght in comparison to the original studio version which appears in their "Moving Waves" album from 1971, and also with some Funky music arrangements. The band in concert and on TV appearances tended to play "Hocus Pocus" in a similar way to the faster version, just playing the song and having a lot of fun, and with some of the members of the band almost laughing while seeing and listening to van Leer.

In 2010 there was a brief "revival" for "Hocus Pocus" in the popularity charts in some countries, thanks to its brief appearance on a TV ad. The TV ad was for some sport shoes. The TV ad became very popular and the song too, for a brief period of time.

In the Side Two there is "Janis", which also is a song from their "Moving Waves" album. It is a song with acoustic and electric guitars, several flutes, plus drums and bass, all played with very good arrangements.

For me, their "Moving Waves" album is a very good album. Maybe their best album. And these two songs are very good representatives from that album.

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
3 stars Sometimes less is more

An edited version of Hocus Pocus was released as a single to support the band's second album, Moving Waves (originally called Focus II). While the album version is almost seven minutes long, the single version is just over three minutes in length. Normally, I despise single edits, as they tend to butcher a great song, and in almost all cases it goes horribly wrong. Hocus Pocus is a rare exception, and I think that nothing of value is lost in this shorter version of the song. To the contrary, I actually think that the longer album version is overlong and repeats itself too many times, making this edited single version preferable over the album version.

The B-side here is Janis, a lovely instrumental taken from the Moving Waves album. The two sides of this single showcase two different sides of Focus very well, making it a very good advertisement for the band and for the Moving Waves album in particular.

A worthy single

Latest members reviews

2 stars One of the most recognizable and unusual songs from the top 40 charts in the earl;y 70`s by perhaps the least recognizable groups from that era, Hocus Pocus by Focus peaked at #20 in the UK and made it into the top 10 in the US. While achieving legendary status amongst prog rock fans with their 19 ... (read more)

Report this review (#223772) | Posted by Vibrationbaby | Monday, June 29, 2009 | Review Permanlink

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