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Amazing Blondel

Prog Folk

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Amazing Blondel Inspiration album cover
2.67 | 9 ratings | 3 reviews | 0% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 1975

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. All The Time For You - Inspiration (4:40)
2. Thinking Of You (3:19)
3. You Didn't Have To Lie About It (3:15)
4. I've Got News For You (2:59)
5. The Lovers (2:13)
6. 6 Good Time Gertie (3:00)
7. On A Night Like This (2:59)
8. Love Song (3:08)
9. Standing By My Window (4:56)
10. Be So Happy (4:20)
11. They're Born, They Grow And They Die (4:52)

Total time 39:41

Line-up / Musicians

- Edward Baird / vocals, guitar
- Terence Wincott / vocals, guitar, keyboards

- Dave Skinner / piano
- Mel Collins / saxophone
- Mick Feat / bass
- William Murray / drums
- Adrian Hopkins / orchestral arrangements (3,8)
- Del Newman / orchestral arrangements (1,2,4,7,10)

Releases information

LP DJM Records ‎- DJLPS.446 (1975, UK)

CD Talking Elephant Records ‎- TECD140 (2009, UK)

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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AMAZING BLONDEL Inspiration ratings distribution

(9 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(0%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(22%)
Good, but non-essential (22%)
Collectors/fans only (56%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

AMAZING BLONDEL Inspiration reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by kenethlevine
4 stars With "Mulgrave Street", you could feel a decline coming on, but "Inspiration" surprisingly reversed the trend at least for the moment. This is actually a substantially better album in a similar soft-rock folky style, with uniformly strong melodies, lyrics and the benefit of judicious orchestration courtesy of Del Newman and Adrian Hopkins.

The opening and closing tracks are the most progressive, but don't get too excited. We aren't talking proghead material. Nonetheless, the combined "All the Time for You/Inspiration" flows from an uptempo happy tune to a more reflective ballad and back. "Thinking of You" is a simply wonderful ballad that finishes even more impressively with piano and strings. "You didn't Have to Lie About it" can be compared with the Beatles "It's Getting Better" musically, very upbeat even though the theme is deceit in love. The next great track is the brief, heavily orchestrated "The Lovers", where Blondel digs back into its Elizabethan past at least for the lyrics. Told from the point of view of a serf speaking to his master, he claims that the mistress loves him. I imagine this is the sort of thing that he is practicing in front of the mirror before telling it to his master's face, if ever! "Good Time Gertie" is actually a pleasant little Genesis-inspired number - think "I know what I like" in a way.

Wow that was just side 1. Side 2 is just as strong, starting with "On a Night Like this", a gentle song that always makes me think of being warm inside on a cold winter night. Gentle acoustic guitars back the excellent vocal harmonies. Again the orchestral backing arranged by Del Newman is impossible to ignore but also not obtrusive. "Love Song" is a similar story musically. While the album is very mellow, each side contains some up tempo material. "Standing by my window" is one of my favourites, from the verses to the majestic middle 8, and includes great work on sax, closing with harmonies that would make better known vocal acts green with envy. "Be So Happy" is a fast paced optimistic song featuring plenty of strings and brass that closes with an extended instrumental . In other words, within the realm of subdued music, "Inspiration" has plenty of contrasts.

If the idea of Beatles influenced soft rock, but with less flash than the Beatles, is appealing to you, or if you know the earlier work of this great band and want to see an example of an artistically successful transition, this album is highly recommended, if you can find it!

Review by ZowieZiggy
2 stars The prog aspects of this "Amazing Blondel" were always alien to me. If there were lots of pure folkish moments during their prior releases, the progressive angle was quite difficult to find. As far as I am concerned, there were none.

This seventh album, awkwardly called "Inspiration" is not of a better style, I'm afraid. To find one great track is a difficult task. I would say (as usual) that vocal harmonies are well crafted (but this is their trade mark) and that this album shares a lot of influences from the Fab Four. Needless to say: it remains quite far from the brilliance of the masters. The best experience is to listen to the genuine works and not to such a pale copy.

Decent orchestrations, sweet melodies are the best that you can expect from this "Inspiration". This album is not any worse than its predecessors, or any better. Just about the same average music which doesn't seem to enthusiast a lot of progheads. Accordingly.

Actually there is nothing folk or prog here. It is just a combo of soft rock songs with little charm; of which the dreadful "Be So Happy" is the weakest of all.

This is a quite uninspired album; the closing instrumental and orchestra oriented is the best example of what is available. If I were you, I would just press the next button. Two stars is the usual rating for "Amazing Blondel". This album won't peak any higher in my standards.

Review by TCat
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars After the departure of John Gladwin in 1973 (who left because of the demanding touring schedule), Amazing Blondel continued as a duo. But since Gladwin wrote most of the material when he was in the band, that duty fell upon the remaining members Eddie Baird and Terence Wincott. At first, it seemed like they were going to stay true to form as "Blondel" was an excellent album, however, after that, the duo started concentrating on a more popular sound moving to more electronics and away from acoustic folk sound. The quality of their output also continued to decrease quite noticeably. And don't expect to find anything that resembles prog after that point.

The album "Inspiration" was released in 1975 following their first attempt at mainstreaming their sound with the album "Mulgrave Street" released the year before that. With "Inspiration", the band attempts to get back some of their original sound with the use of orchestration on 7 out of 10 tracks. However, this lush pop-orchestra style sometimes contrasts with the more electronic sound, and that is apparent right away on the first track, which is a suite of two songs in one track. The first part is more upbeat and a bit weak, but the 2nd part saves it a bit by moving into a more ballad style before returning to the faster tempo again. Not a bad song as the band tries to find it's place in their new sound, but it's not of the quality of before, and it's also as good as it gets, which isn't much so don't get excited. But, then the soft rock sound continues reminding me more of Air Supply (on the ballads) or Lobo (on the midtempo songs) than of the more classy folk artists with their excellent harmonies and tunes of prior years.

Here are a few more notes on a couple of the songs. "The Lovers" is too sappy drenched in sentimental strings to be much good. They do try to stir things up a bit on "Good Time Gertie", and the short piano solo is quite catchy, but overall it ends up being an embarrassing attempt with lousy vocal harmonics in the chorus. They try to turn out their best Beatles clone on "Standing By My Window", but miss it by a mile. 70's pop cliches abound on "Be So Happy" that you can almost imagine naked hippies skipping through fields of green.

This tries to be a romantic record that you could play while sitting on a couch next to your lover with the lights down low. However, if you look close at the pictures on the back cover, you might see through that ruse. Baird looks like he is totally bored and Wincott looks like a crazed madman. Not the image you want to portray if you want to win over the K-Tel "Soft Hits of the 70's" crowd. Not much good on this album, even the fans would probably want to avoid this one.

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