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David Axelrod

Crossover Prog

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David Axelrod Songs of Experience album cover
3.47 | 17 ratings | 2 reviews | 6% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 1969

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. The Poison Tree (3:10)
2. A Little Girl Lost (3:29)
3. London (2:49)
4. The Sick Rose (4:49)
5. The School Boy (2:31)
6. The Human Abstract (5:33)
7. The Fly (4:52)
8. A Divine Image (4:36)

Total time 31:49

Line-up / Musicians

- Howard Roberts / guitars
- Carol Kaye / bass
- Earl Palmer / drums
- Don Randi / keyboards

Thanks to windhawk for the addition
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DAVID AXELROD Songs of Experience ratings distribution

(17 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(6%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(47%)
Good, but non-essential (29%)
Collectors/fans only (18%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

DAVID AXELROD Songs of Experience reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Sean Trane
3 stars 3.5 stars (but 4 for the flipside)

Under the inertia of his debut "solo" album, Axelrod recorded what can be considered the follow-up of his remarkable Song Of Innocence, but with a slight reserve on my part. Aptly titled Songs Of Experience, his second album echoes a bit his earlier opus, which is of course all bonus for Axelrod fans, despite a much-less psychedelic album artwork. However, despite the presence of his usual- suspects (bassist Kaye, drummer Palmer and guitarist Roberts) persence, the general balance tilts towards the invasive and almost intrusive orchestrations, thus upsetting the exquisite equilibrium of Innocence.

Ok, some arrangements are definitely cheesier than before, and one can be somewhat taken aback with the opening Poison Tree, you'll also ponder if the following Little Girl Lost will indeed tilt Axelrod's cinematic music towards the cheesy Hollywood movie soundtracks of the 50's and 60's. The short London does bring a bit more swing and energy, but it's quickly evaporated with the lengthy (everything relative, since it's still under the 5-mins mark) Sick Rose. The short and too-calm Schoolboy opens the flipside, but it's with the album-lengthier Human Abstract that the album finally seems to pass in third gear and head for more opens spaces, with Roberts' fuzz guitar leading the way and Randl's harpsichord to boot. Much to our pleasure, the following Fly is more of the (great) same. The album-closing Divine Image does raise the ante, with a tense and almost-chilling soundscape, approaching what Gil Evans could do so well.

Lasting a tad longer the his debut, SoE only clocks just under 32 minutes, but Axelrod's Experience is certainly not superior to his previous Innocence, because the orchestrations tend to overpower everything else. At least, the flipside manages to brilliantly save an album that was almost lost with its all-too-orchestral heaviness.

Review by Warthur
4 stars David Axelrod's second album took the blend of jazz-rock and psychedelic pop of his previous album, toned down the more overtly psychedelic aspects, and made things just that little bit more orchestrated. If Songs of Innocence is spending the late 1960s hanging out in Haight-Ashbury with the cool kids and dabbling in a bit of jazz on the side, Songs of Experience is spending the same time hitting the bars in Hollywood in between takes on a movie set, not entirely aware that there's a KGB agent on its tail - there's just that hint of suspense to proceedings which lurks under the surface and stops things from going into full-blown easy listening territory.

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