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RELICS 1973-1975


Symphonic Prog

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Ethos Relics 1973-1975 album cover
3.11 | 18 ratings | 2 reviews | 0% 5 stars

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Boxset/Compilation, released in 1975

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Nightingale
2. Elephant Man
3. Placebo
4. Identity
5. Experimental War
6. Troilus And Cressida
7. Intrepid Traveler
8. Doing Your Duty
9. Perceptions
10. Pimp City Dream

Line-up / Musicians

- Wil Sharpe / acoutic & electric guitars, voice
- Michael Ponczek / mini-moog, poly-moog, hammand organ, chamberlin, rhodes piano
- Mark Richards / percussions, moog drum, micro moog, voice
- Brad Stephenson / bass, string bass, moog bass pedals, voice
- Steve Marra / vocals, bass, flute

Releases information

Black Moon Productions 2000

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Neu!mann for the last updates
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ETHOS Relics 1973-1975 ratings distribution

(18 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(0%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(44%)
Good, but non-essential (44%)
Collectors/fans only (11%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

ETHOS Relics 1973-1975 reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by erik neuteboom
3 stars The debut album "Ardour" (1975) from USA progrock band Ethos sold worldwide more than 50.000 copies (many in the UK, Japan and Germany). They shared the bill with King Crimson and Gentle Giand and if you're lucky to own one of the wonderful Genesis books by Armando Gallo, you will notice that Peter Gabriel is wearing an Ethos t-shirt during their 1975 USA tour. So there's some magic around this band and their great first record! This CD (running time 62 minutes) is a compilation of four studio - and six live tracks, recorded between '73 and '75. The demo-studio tracks contain strong instrumental pieces (wonderful Mellotron eruptions, fiery electric guitar, harpsichord/electric guitar duel) with hints from Yes but the compositions sound more like a jam and at some moments a bit freaky/fragmentic. The live songs are more in the vein of Genesis featuring more variety (acoustic guitar, strings) and many Mellotron floods. The highlight is "Pimp city dream" (almost 18 minutes): a first part with a compelling bombastic climate, evoked by intricate interplay between a fiery electric guitar and moving Mellotron (a bit similar to Anekdoten), accompanied by cynical vocals. Halfway it's complete silence, followed by a Glenn Miller like piece, guitar-organ interplay and a heavy organ solo. The final part includes a fluent rythm delivering R&R guitar and bombastic organ runs. THIS IS ONE OF THE BETTER USA PROGROCK BANDS!
Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Legendary US Prog group from Fort Wayne, Indiana, established sometime towards the end of the 60's by lead singer/guitarist Wils Sharpe, keyboardist Michael Ponczek, drummer Mark Richards and bassist Dan Owen.Originally named Atlantis, they soon moved from a 60's-influenced sound to a more Art Rock approach with influences from Classical Music and Jazz.After finding out of the German band of the same name, they became Ethos (around 1972-73), it was the same time Owen left the band and was replaced by Steve Marra.They secured a contract with Capitol and played every year around 100 college concerts, building a cult following.Demo and live recordings from the 1973-75 period were released on CD under the title ''Relics'' in 2000 on Black Moon.

These archival pieces show a group with huge potential, playing a complex Progressive Rock along the lines of YES, maybe a tad more guitar-driven at moments, and containing some E.L.P./KING CRIMSON sensibilities in the more mellow passages, where vocals and Mellotron prevail.The album features a couple of tracks later to be found in the proper Ethos releases, ''Intrepid traveler'' and ''Pimp city''.Basically all studio tracks are home-based productions, having though a good recording quality, two of them come with former member Dan Owen on bass.The style of the group was somewhat split between British Prog Rock and US Prog/Psych with some great keyboard work, complicated guitar hooks, poetic vocals and uplifting bass, sometimes having a rural essence due to the use of acoustic guitar and mandolin and never forgetting about adding a touch of pomposity.Lots of organ, harsichord, Mellotron and layered synthesizer, some rough guitar edges and laid-back interruptions offer compositions of decent quality and even some trully masterful moments with intense interplays and dramatic vocals.''Identity'' and the hidden track ''Dream'' come from a 74' live recording at the Electric Flag concert and this is YES in disguise, nice Mellotron and tricky keyboards in mostly instrumental deliveries, supported by slightly jazzy and always adventurous guitar parts.''Perceptions'' and ''Pimp city'' (the cuts with Dan Owen on bass) are basement productions with a mediocre sound quality, but when the music is so good, who cares about the slightly bearable sound.These sound a lot like a combination between YES and KING CRIMSON, dominant Mellotron and flute (or is it flute strings?) and some very impressive guitar plays.

Really cool document of Ethos' early years.Heavily influenced by YES and KING CRIMSON, the Americans played a complicated Prog Rock with trully efficient keyboard/guitar fests and a touch of Psych and Folk.The best had yet to come.Recommended.

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