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EARTH AND FIRE

Earth And Fire

Symphonic Prog


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Earth And Fire Earth And Fire album cover
3.39 | 69 ratings | 11 reviews | 20% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential


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Studio Album, released in 1970

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Wild And Exciting (4:27)
2. Twilight Dreamer (4:16)
3. Ruby Is The One (3:26)
4. You Know The Way (3:46)
5. Vivid Shady Lady (4:11)
6. 21st Century Show (4:14)
7. Seasons (4:08)
8. Love Quiver (7:36)
9. What's Your Name (3:36)

Total Time: 39:40

Bonus tracks on 1993 CD release:
10. Mechanical Lover (2:16)
11. Hazy Paradise (3:46)
12. Memories (3:21)
13. Invitation (3:48)
14. From The End Till The Beginning (4:54)
15. Lost Forever (2:47)
16. Song Of The Marching Children (Single Version) (4:06)
17. Thanks For The Love (3:38)
18. What Difference Does It Make (3:10)

Bonus tracks on 2009 remaster:
10. Hazy Paradise (Single B-side 1969 ) (3:47)
11. Mechanical Lover (Single B-side 1970) (2:18)

Lyrics

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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

- Jerney Kaagman / lead vocals
- Chris Koerts / guitar, vocals
- Gerard Koerts / piano, organ
- Hans Ziech / bass
- Ton van der Kleij / drums,percussion

With:
- Cees Kalis / drums (3,7,10,11)

Releases information

Artwork: Ron Seubert

LP Polydor ‎- 2441 011 (1970, Netherlands)
LP Music On Vinyl ‎- MOVLP616 (2012, Netherlands)

CD Repertoire Records ‎- REP 4318-WY (1993, Germany) 9 bonus tracks, new cover by Roger Dean
CD Esoteric Recordings ‎- ECLEC2146 (2009, UK) 24-bit remaster by Ben Wiseman w/ 2 bonus tracks

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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EARTH AND FIRE Earth And Fire ratings distribution


3.39
(69 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(20%)
20%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(30%)
30%
Good, but non-essential (36%)
36%
Collectors/fans only (13%)
13%
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)
0%

EARTH AND FIRE Earth And Fire reviews


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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Sean Trane
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Prog Folk
2 stars Their debut album is actually quite different than the following albums . Unlike those , this album is very guitar-dominated and loaded organs from the RnR twins. This album is very much RnR sometimes sounding like fellow Dutchmen Golden Earrings (especially the opener) and Focus (Twilight ) and some almost Gregorian chants on the fourth track and some weak flutes lines on the closing track, are what the progheads should look out for in here. This album received many re-releases , the one I heard being with a Roger Dean artwork depictinf a huge rootfull tree in mainly black & white drawing. The many releases have different bonuses most of which where singles throughout their carreer up to their disco days (actually still fairly pleasant to the progheads believe it or not). Of those bonuses , I will point out Hazy Paradise with Grace slick-like vocals and overall Jefferson Airplane ambiances.

Reseved for confirmed fans who have the next two albums.

Review by Proghead
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars I remembered back as a kid when my dad bought "To the World of the Future", thinking there'd be no way in hell in ever finding out anything more about EARTH & FIRE, one of the great Dutch prog rock bands. My dad bought "To the World of the Future" not really knowing what he was buying (he wasn't exactly the most musically informed person out there), and since none of my family ever been to Holland, he bought that album either mistaking them for EARTH, WIND & FIRE, or simply liked the '70s futuristic cover artwork. This was back in the 1980s, and so I just thought getting info on this band was worthless. There was no Internet, and running in to people who collect this sort of stuff was rather rare. I never mentioned anyone them for the obvious reason of bewilderment or mistaking them with EW&F. Just to let everyone know, by the time they released "To the World of the Future", they were starting to explore disco, but hadn't yet abandoned prog.

In the 1990s, I met someone else who owned a few EARTH & FIRE albums and ever so glad they had many more albums, and I very much treasure "Song of the Marching Children" and "Atlantis" greatly (since I originally had cassette copies of these courtesy of that guy who owned EARTH & FIRE albums, and then me acquiring the original Dutch Polydor gatefold LP copies of those albums).

This self-entitled album was their debut LP, but they already released a couple singles prior, "Seasons" b/w "Hazy Paradise" (1969) and "Ruby is the One" b/w "Mechanical Lover" (1970), both A-sides ending up on this album. So this album ended up having two songs with original drummer Cees Kalis, and the rest with new drummer Ton van der Kleij. This here is the original LP, released on Polydor/Medium with the matchbox cover, in which the cover folds open to reveal matches, and of the song contents. In 1971, this album received a UK release on the Nepentha label, which features the Roger Dean cover (that's been used on the German Repertoire CD reissue as well as the Japanese reissue). The Nepentha LP is even harder to acquire than the Polydor/Medium matchbox cover, so I went for the matchbox cover (the Nepentha LP regularly goes for $200-400). This album is less polished than the albums to follow ("Song of the Marching Children", "Atlantis"), the Mellotron hadn't even yet appeared (although I suspected a little synthesizers was used near the end of "Twilight Dreamer"), and there's more of a late '60s psych feel.

The album opens up with "Wild and Exciting", which became a hit for them in their home country. "Vivid Shady Land" features some aggressive guitar from Chris Koerts, plus male vocals, and of course female vocals of Jerney Kaagman. "Seasons" was the very first song they ever recorded, as mentioned, previously released as a single. This song wasn't written by either of the Koerts brothers or any other EARTH & FIRE members, but George Kooysman of GOLDEN EARRING (who supported EARTH & FIRE and helped sign them to Polydor, the label Golden Earring was recording for). "Love Quiver" bears more than a striking resemblance to JEFFERSON AIRPLANE, right down to the vocal harmonies, although Jerney Kaagman's voice doesn't sound much like Grace Slick (more like STEELEYE SPAN's "Maddy Prior", but with a Dutch accent, or perhaps Mariska Veres of SHOCKING BLUE). But very unlike something from the AIRPLANE, you get a lengthy organ solo (rather than an extended Jorma Kaukonen guitar solo like on the "Volunteers" album). "21st Century Show" is much like the rest of the album, but features a nice flute solo. "What's Your Name" is a laid-back acoustic piece with flute. It sounds like Jerney Kaagman isn't doing any of the vocal duties here, not even backing vocals, the vocal duties seem to be from the Koerts twins, this song gives you a clue what EARTH & FIRE might have sounded like if they didn't feature a female vocalist. It's obvious that these guys need to brush on their English, but regardless, it's a pleasant piece, especially after the aggressiveness of "Love Quiver" (which preceeded it). It's understood that "Song of the Marching Children" and "Atlantis" shows the band at their best (I can't argue with that), this debut album is still excellent with promise of more great things to come.

Review by ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars Earth & Fire debut are obviously different from the rest of their production. Jerney's voice is of course already very nice (for the ones who can stand it, and I belong to those ones). This album holds very few symphonic and bombastic songs. This record was released in 1970, so there is no wonder : some pyschedelic mood is to be noticed. Just listen to "Wild And Exiting". Fully reminiscent of the Airplane and to some extent to Floyd ("Piper" period of course).

This album has not aged very well, I'm afraid. There is no need for the casual fan to grab this one although a song like "21st Century Show" indicates already the direction that they will pursue a little later (more complex structure, nice flute) while "Seasons" reminds me "Never Marry A Railroad Man" from "Shocking Blue" (their fellow countrymen, woman) which was also released in 1970.

Each remastered version features a hell of good bonus tracks. Five songs or so being present on each version. Several anthems which will be available on later studio releases ("Memories", "Song Of A Marching Children", "Storm & Thunder".

Two stars.

Review by Matti
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars This debut of the not-too-well-known Dutch band is estimated here to be quite different from their later work. Unfortunately this is the only one I've heard and so I can only give my humble impressions on this one (well, the copy I borrowed seems to have bonus tracks from their next album too... and, yes, those tracks may be slightly better on the average. But frankly I haven't yet listened to it many times enough to make thoughtful comparisons).

Their most distinctive feature is probably their powerful female singer Jerney Kaagman who is in the same league as, for example, women of AFFINITY, BABE RUTH or JEFFERSON AIRPLANE. Also musically EARTH & FIRE can be compared at least to the latter, but still they are bands of two quite different sounds.

E&F is a nice cocktail of hazy psychedelia and energetic rock, with guitars and organ on the front. There are no notable elements of symphonic prog, but still these songs have luring ideas enough to avoid falling into non-prog rock'n'roll category. Of course there are some tracks that are rather poor, but there are more that are good. In fact they sound better and better with each listening, even though the first impression may have been less than remarkable. What I like here is the sort of "dated" sound. I'm not meaning bad production (it's pretty good actually), but the overall feeling, call it hazy if you like. You can tell without a doubt this music comes from the fruitful era of '68-'72, and being European instead of American or British gives some extra to it all. Netherlands is indeed a good prog country. EARTH & FIRE is not in the same level as FOCUS but an interesting addition anyway.

Review by memowakeman
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Earth and Fire.

This is the debut album of this prog rock band from Holland, and actually the only one I know from theirs, so I don't really know if they were truly a progressive rock band later, or as in this album, they were just another nice rock band.

Earth and Fire released their debut album back in 1970, so you may think they have been influenced by some of their Dutch prog models such as Focus or Ekseption, and they may, but in this album I would say they were way more influenced by classic rock bands, more specific, by Shocking Blue, not saying that they are a rip-off, because actually they sometimes do sound like Shocking Blue, but they wanted (or at least I think) to have their own sound, so when they added keyboards to the sound, their music was a bit different, though it is difficult not to think in the band that created hits such as Venus or Never Marry a Railroad Man.

This debut album features 9 songs and a total time of 40 minutes; however it has been re- released with some extra tracks which I don't know. As you can imagine, all the tracks are short tracks that go between 3-4 minutes, so don't expect for complexity here.

My favorite songs are "Wild and Exciting", "21st Century Show" and "Love Quivers", the last happens to be the only "long" song reaching almost 8 minutes.

Their compositions are pretty similar; the female vocals are almost equal to Shocking Blue's ones, and the music in the rock vein more than in the prog vein. The music is well composed with good guitars, both electric and acoustic, nice drumming, and every now and then some nice keyboards and flute, so it is a good album, the thing is that it would be a weak album if we are talking about progressive rock, since those elements are only shown in 2 or 3 tracks; they also have male vocals, average ones.

In general, the album deserves 3 stars because it has nice music on it, but here, in a progressive rock site where we are supposed to qualify those progressive rock albums from bands that meant to create that kind of music, I believe this album deserves 2 stars; as I said above, I don't know if they really made true progressive rock albums, but this is not an example, anyway?.

Enjoy it!

Review by HolyMoly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Retired Admin
5 stars This debut is among my favorite albums of any genre. This is the band in its hard rock/psych/folk mode, with organs and flutes sharing space with heavy electric and acoustic guitars. They haven't fully reached their "prog phase" yet, but BOY OH BOY are these songs catchy. Although the band got a little help from George Kooymans (Golden Earring), who penned their first single ("Seasons"), their songwriting ability is already fully-formed. Each song is dynamic, filled with hooks, and try to keep the song structures interesting. Jerney Kaagman (vocals) comes across like a girl-next-door version of Grace Slick, displaying both a toughness and a fun quality that's really charming. The singles, "Wild and Exciting", "Seasons", and "Ruby is the One" are everything hard rock singles from 1970 should be. An exhilarating debut - when it ends, I often go back to the beginning and play it again.
Review by Tarcisio Moura
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Definitly quite different from their future works. Thatīs the obvious conclusion one gets from listening to E & Fīs debut album. But thatīs not to say it is bad, far from it. In fact I liked very much the psychedelic/heavy prog approach of this record. Certainly that band showed quite clearly they had something extra from the very beginning: besides being very good musicians, they happened to have an extraordinaire vocalist (Jerney Kaagman, a powerhouse singer that reminds of a cross between Curved Airīs Sonja Kristina and the Jefferson Airplaineīs Grace Slick) and the knack to write fine tunes. I guess it would be a matter of time before they tried to write something more complex, which they eventually did.

However, this CD is not without its merits: if you like the aforementioned styles, then youīll probably enjoy their stuff. They were hardly very original, and still they have a personal touch on every song. My favorites are the beautiful harmonies of Ruby Is The One, the driving organ riff of Twilight Dreamer (again strong vocals from Kaagman), the simple yet very effective Seasons and the emotional, early Deep Purple-like, Love Quiver (great guitar and organ parts). In fact, I liked all the tracks. Itīs ok that none is really a classic, but they are very good, nonetheless. Just donīt expect too much something like Song Of The Marching Children. The production is good thanks, I think, much to the excellent remastering. You can hear everything quite clearly. My CD comes with no less than 9 bonus tracks, which I believe are taken from singles (before and after this release). Very nice addition, I should say, since they are all fine tunes.

Rating: 3.5 stars. Not quite on the excellent level, specially considering the of their follow ups, but more than just good.

Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
5 stars One of my favourite debut albums, the self titled `Earth and Fire' LP is a riff-heavy, guitar and organ dominated pop rocker with powerful male/female vocals. While the band would later become a more sophisticated and symphonic progressive rock band, at this point they were more of a psychedelic acid-rock unit, like a crunchier version of Jefferson Airplane, with brief Pink Floyd-like hazy atmospheres. Every track has a punchy and energetic sound, female lead singer Jerney Kaagman is a commanding, tough (while still remaining very feminine and sexy) and hugely charming focal point of the group. There's so many catchy riffs and psych touches scattered amongst the tracks, all full of memorable melodies and rough charm.

From the opening seconds of `Wild and Exciting', hard rocking riffs and Jerney's confident vocals punch you straight in the face! A melodic opener that grabs your attention right away with it's power, a catchy and addictive rocker full of wailing guitar solos!

The upbeat `Twilight Dreamer' is hazy and psychedelic, with a stoned acoustic guitar and male/female diversion in the 'There comes Lydia...!' moments! Lovely shimmering organ, and I especially smile in the quiet cymbal and flute breaks.

Cheeky `Ruby Is The One' is a kind of super-sexy lesbian anthem - or at least that's my interpretation of it! A kick-ass adrenaline charged pop-rocker with a killer chorus and a sleazy strut, no surprise it was picked as a single from the album, backed with an equally naughty B-Side `Mechanical Lover'!

`You Know The Way' is all over the place! Beginning with eerie chanted male vocals, the song soon drifts into a dreamy and reflective acoustic ballad with a superb lead vocal from Jerney. Her words are sadly romantic, but with just a hint of slightly more upbeat moments when electric guitar and organ drops in.

The riff heavy `Vivid Shady Land' is one of my personal favourites, with aggressive groovy guitar and forceful male vocals. The middle section is very influenced by late 60's/early 70's Pink Floyd with mournful organ and spacey guitar effects creating a very floating and ambient break. I love the awkward English translated lyrics like `Leaves all smashed on the river side, the trees are burning and they're crying bright', and the upbeat `making love with our minds' chorus bit! It's all full of very uplifting energy.

Both `21st Century Show' and `Seasons' feature Jefferson Airplane/Peanut Butter Conspiracy duel male/female vocals. The frantic guitar driven `Show' has maddening organ, pumping bass and rapid-fire drumming before a jazzy acoustic detour in the middle with beautifully atmospheric flute.

`Seasons' heavy acid pop sound has grumbling bass with a very moving solo spot about three minutes in where it's just Jerney, flute and acoustic guitar together. Her lovely wistful vocal carries the song through to a thoughtful conclusion.

The dirty sexy strutting 7 minute `Love Quivers' has more chunky riffs, machine-gun drumming, playful group vocal chorus outbursts and two mind-blowing spacey organ outbursts that will knock you down - think those early albums by Eloy, Jane and Grobschnitt for similar organ attacks! The whole band gets lots of loose jamming standout moments on this one, and it's probably the piece that most hints at the symphonic progressive direction the band would next head in.

The album ends on a lovely acoustic acid folk ballad `What's Your Name' with fragile male vocals and gentle flute. Positive vibes all around this one.

Although I'm reviewing the LP version, many of the CD reissues have lots of terrific bonus tracks (for once!) that highlight their shift from psych/acid/rock to a more progressive style. `Hazy Paradise', `Mechanical Lover', and the Mellotron fuelled `Memories' are especially impressive, and they compliment the debut album perfectly. In my opinion, the bonus material is strong enough to stand as an album all it's own. So as much as I'm a vinyl junkie, definitely look into one of the CD releases.

Fans only familiar with the later albums from Earth and Fire should not be dismissive or put off by the different sound present on this one. The album is full of terrific playing, exciting arrangements, hugely charming vocals and boundless energy. Every track heads in different directions, there's a real toughness and sense of fun to the performances, and fans of 60's acid rock and psych will finds lots to relish here. To my ears it's an essential album that truly showcases a band with so much promise and potential, and it's one of the first albums I think of recommending to new listeners. Along with Curved Air's `Air Cut' album, `Earth and Fire' is one of my favourite female fronted prog-related albums, and I love spreading the word about this high quality debut, a total classic in my opinion!

Latest members reviews

3 stars I've Repertoire REP 4318-WY. Earth and Fire was the Dutch answer to Genesis and Pink Floyd but this first album isn't good for this operation. Great, in this album is Jerney Kaagman, great vocalist but the songs aren't totally Prog: too Rock. I prefer "Seasons", cover of Golden Erring's great ... (read more)

Report this review (#408522) | Posted by Stella | Saturday, February 26, 2011 | Review Permanlink

4 stars I wanted to give this album a five star note, but... Well, you see, it's a masterpiece for me, but I don't think that for evry prog fan. So I'm giving this lp 4 stars. What have we on this album? Very beautiful and solid songs. Earth&Fire debut is lika a less jazz and more rock version of Affinit ... (read more)

Report this review (#116761) | Posted by Deepslumber | Thursday, March 29, 2007 | Review Permanlink

4 stars 21st century show (4:14) was and is the great beginner of greater things to come! This debut album is vivid, wild, warm, dangerously sweet and very, very exciting. Ruby is the one (3:26) paves the way, and the whole LP is full of shimmering, glimmering sounds, soft Jerney's vocals, superb Klei ... (read more)

Report this review (#31565) | Posted by | Monday, August 9, 2004 | Review Permanlink

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