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Focus House of the King album cover
3.19 | 9 ratings | 2 reviews | 22% 5 stars

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Boxset/Compilation, released in 1983

Songs / Tracks Listing

Side One:
1. Hocus Pocus (US version)
2. Love Remembered
3. Tommy
4. Elspeth Of Nottingham
5. House Of The King
Side Two:
1. Sylvia (At The Rainbow version)
2. Focus II
3. Round Goes The Gossip
4. Focus III

Releases information

EMIGOLD Series 1A 034-25130

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to WiguJimbo for the last updates
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FOCUS House of the King ratings distribution

(9 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(22%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(33%)
Good, but non-essential (44%)
Collectors/fans only (0%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

FOCUS House of the King reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by VianaProghead
3 stars Review Nš 619

Focus is a Dutch progressive rock band founded in 1969 by organist and flutist Thijs van Leer, bassist Martin Dresden and drummer Hans Cleuver. The initial idea was to follow the style of Traffic. After that the group could produce their debut studio album, "Focus Plays Focus" aka "In And Out Of Focus" in 1970, already with the presence of Jan Akkerman on guitar. Focus is considered one of the biggest and most important bands in the progressive rock style.

"House Of The King" is a compilation album of Focus. This is one of the several compilation albums released by the band during the career of the group during the 70's. "House Of The King" has only tracks that belong to that musical period of Focus and that includes tracks from their first three studio albums, "Focus Plays Focus" aka "In And Out Of Focus", "Focus II" aka "Moving Waves" and "Focus 3". That means that we are talking about tracks that belong to some of their best studio albums. We are talking about albums that belong to their best and most progressive phase.

"House Of The King" was released in 1983 and has nine tracks. "Hocus Pocus" is from "Moving Waves". This is an extraordinary track, a legendary track from the band with intensity perfectly astonishing and, at the same time, we may also say that it has some beautiful insanity on it. It's a track that soon we heard it, soon we sing it, and that, in the end, we remain completely free from all tensions and stress after a day's work. This always was one of my favourite progressive tracks ever. This is the US version. "Love Remembered" is from "Focus 3". It's a simple short and beautiful song. It's a relaxing song with a soft tune and a nice pastoral and bucolic melody. Basically, it's a song with acoustic guitar, flute and keyboards, with bass and drums on the back. Instead of the usual aggressive style of Thijs van Leer flute, it goes for a delicate and melancholic melody. This is an incredibly beautiful and melancholic song. "Tommy" is from "Moving Waves". It's a small excerpt of their multi-part suite "Eruption", which is divided into many several parts. "Eruption" is an amazing real progressive masterpiece with great organ sounds, tons of drums, very melodic bass and straightforward hard rock electric guitars. There are some intensely floating Mellotron and backing vocals parts too. "Tommy" is probably the most known excerpt, a logical choice for a single. "Elspeth Of Nottingham" is from "Focus 3". It's a very beautiful medieval madrigal well performed by classical guitar and flute. I always loved the medieval music, and so, this song is a blessing for my senses. This is another great track with great high quality. This is something very adequate, because the travel inside this music with lute and piccolo prepares us to a true trip in time. It's clearly a Jan Akkerman's influenced piece. "House Of The King" is from "In And Out Of Focus". This is a legendary track. It shows the compositional abilities of Jan Akkerman and the harmony between the flute of Thijs van Leer and the acoustic guitar of Jan Akkerman. Despite be short, it's an exciting and refreshing moment. It's a classic from Focus where we can see compositional mastery, creative experimentalism and instrumental virtuosity. "Sylvia" is from "Focus 3". It's a classic from Focus. It's a melodic song conducted by the electric guitar of Jan Akkerman and with great performances by all other band's members, in the supporting role. It's basically a flurry of sounds all meticulously connected. This is a memorable catchy song with an emotive melody where the song is built around it. I can see why this became a hit for them on the radio. It has a more mainstream pop sound. "Focus II" is from "Moving Waves". It's an interesting and melodic piece dominated by the guitar of Jan Akkerman. This is a song that continues the Focus series, with good song writing and great musical performance by all band's members, as usual. It's a beautiful song with amazing melodies and a fantastic interplay between all band's members. This is one of the best examples of their unusual style. "Round Goes The Gossip" is from "Focus 3". This is a well humoured song with a curious and strange consecutive repetition of the title song, by Thijs van Leer, as if it was a lyric. It's catchy, a kind of a jazz-fusion song with nice instrumentation. It's one of the rare songs with singing with a little bit of Latin. This is really a vibrant track very versatile that just only can be described as progressive rock at its best. "Focus III" is also from "Focus 3". It continues the Focus series, with excellent song writing and a great performance by all band's members, as is usual with Focus. Like the other Focus' themes, it's a great piece, gentle, symphonic and emotional. It's pleasant and amusing. It has a beautiful and pastoral sound, really. This is truly an incredibly and beautiful song, that demonstrates all the best qualities of Focus, indeed.

Conclusion: "House Of The King" is another good compilation album of Focus. It's very similar to "Masters Of Rock 1971 ? 1973" from 1974 and "Dutch Masters 1969 ? 1973" from 1975. All three compilation albums only have tracks that belong to the first three studio albums of Focus, "In And Out Of Focus", "Moving Waves" and "Focus 3". It means that they're only focused in what is considered the golden prog era of the band. So, as happened with the other two compilation albums, "House Of The King" has some of the best and most known progressive tracks of Focus like "Hocus Pocus", "Tommy", "House Of The King", "Sylvia", "Focus II" and "Focus III". So, also the same 3 stars to it.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

Latest members reviews

3 stars Nice collection of pieces by Focus, from their 3 first albums, mainly from Focus III (5 pieces). But I have a gripe on how some pieces are trimmed, particularly "Hocus Pocus", which has a fade-off in the middle of a solo. "Tommy" is a selection from the suite "Eruption" from their second album M ... (read more)

Report this review (#2894864) | Posted by sensedatum | Saturday, February 25, 2023 | Review Permanlink

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