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Korni Grupa / Kornelyans

Jazz Rock/Fusion

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Korni Grupa / Kornelyans Kornelyans: Not an Ordinary Life album cover
4.06 | 49 ratings | 8 reviews | 31% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1974

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Rising (2:14)
2. Not an Ordinary Life (10:16)
3. Generation 1942 (6:32)
4. Fall of the Land of Women (5:30)
5. Temporary Parting (3:58)
6. Man with a White Flag (11:43)

Total Time 40:13

Line-up / Musicians

- Zlatko Pejakovic / lead vocals
- Josip Bocek / electric & acoustic guitars, backing vocals
- Kornelije Kovac / keyboards, backing vocals
- Bojan Hreljac / bass
- Vladimir Furduj / drums

Note : The actual instrumentation could not be fully confirmed at this moment

Releases information

Artwork: Milenko Miletić

LP Ricordi ‎- SMRL 6130 (1974, Italy)

CD Vinyl Magic ‎- VM 030 CD (1991, Italy)

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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KORNI GRUPA / KORNELYANS Kornelyans: Not an Ordinary Life ratings distribution

(49 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(31%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(45%)
Good, but non-essential (20%)
Collectors/fans only (4%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

KORNI GRUPA / KORNELYANS Kornelyans: Not an Ordinary Life reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Seyo
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Kornelije Kovac was obviously quite dissapointed by both a poor result of a smash hit "Moja generacija" at the Eurovision contest of 1974 and a lack of success to hit the Western market with this prog album so that he decided to disband KORNI GRUPA at the end of 1974. "Not an Ordinary Life" was recorded and released in Italy by Ricordi label, the lyrics were sung in English, while Island Records took responsability for the English- speaking market. However, album reportedly sold only some 10 000 copies due to poor advertising. Looking from distance, it was underrated at the time and neglected by domestic public but surely it is worth listening. This album was made under clear influence from YES and GENESIS style prog, especially noticeable in the first two songs - instrumental "Rising" and the title track. Then we have two re-recorded songs - "Generation 42" is an English version of the Eurovision hit "Moja generacija", slightly extended and slowed down here, and "Fall Off the Land of Women" which appeared on the first album as "Bezglave ja-ha horde". They are not so bad but the originals were better, for me as a non-English native the translation did not make it. "Temporary Parting" is a piano/organ based instrumental with some nice Chris Squire-like bass lines, while the final "Man With the White Flag" is a not much inspired lengthy piece with some good Bocek guitar solo. This song would re-surface in a live version on the farewell album "Mrtvo more" the following year. Finally this is a good and well-produced effort (the first Yugoslavian rock album to be recorded in the West!) from the legendary prog-rockers and is recommended to English-speaking listeners, although English singing is weaker segment of the album.
Review by clarke2001
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars KORNI GRUPA did it again, this time under the different name: they made excellent record. "Not An Ordinary Life" was aimed for the Western market; all the titles and lyrics are in English, and the band changed it's name (temporarily) from KORNI GRUPA to KORNELYANS. It wasn't huge success, though. However, album do not contain any bad tracks. Overall, band moved towards the symphonic sound, compared to its predecessor, but jazz-fusion influences are still evident, as well as almost funky bass lines. Highlights of this record are synths (used more often then on "Korni Grupa") and excellent guitar work, both electric and acoustic, where electric guitar solos are pushing the boundaries in a same vein as PFM did it in their finest moments. Vocals are more than good, and English pronunciation is...not that bad, at least not for the band from behind the Iron Curtain in early seventies.

A little bit of trivia: I swear that in "Not An Ordinary Life" track you can hear something that could easily be vinyl scratching, somewhere among all that peculiar Moog sounds. In 1974? Well, you never know.

Again, I won't give 5 stars to this lovely album because of (how typical) inconsistencies, for example, the track "Man With The White Flag" is a little bit too protracted. But don't let this discourage you; this is well worth giving it a try. Well-deserved four stars.

Review by Mellotron Storm
3 stars This was KORNI GRUPA's second album and they recorded it in Italy with English vocals trying to break the international market. Unfortunately it didn't do very well at all.

"Rising" opens with some annoying sounding synths but then the song picks up and turns fuller. A calm with piano ends this short intro track. "Not An Ordinary Life" is much better.The vocals remind me of a Zappa recording, in fact i'm reminded of both Zappa and WIGWAM at times on this my favourite tune. The drumming is great early on. It settles with drums and almost spoken words before 2 minutes then kicks back in with guitar leading. I like the drums / synths section after 4 minutes. Guitar leads 5 1/2 minutes in. Vocals are back 9 minutes in. Excellent track.

"Generation" opens with intricate guitar which is replaced by reserved vocals a minute in. It picks up before 3 minutes with strummed guitar and synths standing out. The organ joins in. It settles then picks up as contrasts continue. "Fall Of The Land Of Woman" has a good low end rhythm with vocals.The organ joins in. Synths lead 3 minutes in and the guitar is aggressive a minute later. Nice. "Temporary Parting" features piano melodies until around 1 1/2 minutes when drums, synths and bass become prominant. Piano ends it though. "Man With A White Flag" opens with drums and floating organ as the vocals come and go.This is a pretty good uptempo tune. Not a fan of the synths though after 5 minutes. Love the section 7 minutes in that is very WIGWAM-like. Great section. Some nice drum work before 9 1/2 minutes.

A good album but not as good as the debut which I rated a low 4 stars. So 3.5 stars it is.

Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
4 stars What a difference only a couple of years made to Yugoslavian rock band Korni Grupa. The group released one of the best prog-related works from that region with their self-titled LP in 1972, a mix of adventurous rock music with lengthy jazzy and heavily improvised instrumental passages, but two years later brought about many changes. Tweaking their name to Kornelyans and switching to English vocals to hopefully offer a more international appeal, 1974's `Not an Ordinary Life' also brought about a complete change in sound, the band adopting a keyboard heavy full-blown symphonic prog approach with interesting results that reminds of bands like Morgan, Omega and Yes, providing a crossover of tighter melodic appeal but not skimping on ravishing instrumental elements as well.

The keyboard-driven change in style is completely evident right from the short two-minute opening introduction `Rising', a lightly prancing and breezy symphonic theme full of bubbling synths and trickles of crystalline piano. But the ten-minute title track `Not an Ordinary Life' is an instant statement-of-intent, full of a ravishing selection of ideas and great playing, and there's an almost loopy Frank Zappa quality weaving in and out of the exotic percussion breaks, quirky group-vocal driftings, eerie sound-collages and dynamic instrumental runs. There's no let-up to Vladimir Furduj's rumbling drums, Josip Bocek delivers fiery electric guitar bursts, Bojan Hreljac aggressively attacks his relentless bass, and Kornelije Kovac's plentiful thick and exhilarating keyboards are often very much in the manner of Rick Wakeman's work on the early Yes albums. Zlatko Pejakovic's vocals remain as curious and challenging as ever (he's either very effective as on the first Korni Grupa album or unbearable when he falls into the screeching wails on the Grupa Dah one), but there's a jubilant energy to his charmingly accented voice here. The track probably doesn't really hold together too well, but it is admirably ambitious and never dull. `Generation 1942' keeps up the same diverse approach but attempts to graft it to a more accessible tune, with jangling acoustic passages and moody organ carrying a melancholic lyric with a soaring and hearty chorus, and listen out for the cool playful Yes-like infectious Moog solo spot!

The spirited lead vocal and battery of keyboard attack resembles Greenslade on side two's opener `Fall of the Land of Women', and instrumental `Temporary Parting' has a touch of Camel to its playful and dreamy excited keyboards and peppy Moog runs, book-ended with a sparkling piano and sombre organ reflection. The near-twelve minute `Man with a White Flag' offers plenty of infectious grooves slinking in and out of an endless selection of winning little symphonic themes jammed to the gills with an ocean of keyboard sheen and smouldering guitar embers. An extended instrumental E.L.P-like sprint in the middle and the lovely jazzy outro are especially pleasing, but the whole closer is truly a sublime showcase of the versatility and talent of the band.

The album cover boasts `Includes `Generation 42' suggesting it was a single of note, but it unfortunately didn't appear to win the band any great success or further acclaim, and they ended up splitting the same year that this album was released, with a later 1975 LP `Mrtvo More' including parts of their farewell concert performance. For those wanting to investigate the band, there's two options - if you like the early adventuresome proto-prog rock bands that stretched out with lots of jamming, go for the `Korni Grupa' debut, if you prefer terrifically performed keyboard-heavy symph-prog, grab this colourful and confident work first. Better yet, why not just track down and enjoy both?!

Four stars for a sterling effort from a great band.

Latest members reviews

4 stars Korni Grupa morphed into Kornelyans somehow and made an excellent record of dynamic progressive rock. Overall, the music is characterized by piano/synth/guitar interplay with theatric, almost RPI vocals. Looking at the cover, the song "Gereration 42" is highlighted, maybe this was a regio ... (read more)

Report this review (#1033486) | Posted by Suedevanshoe | Thursday, September 12, 2013 | Review Permanlink

5 stars A band of Yougoslavia and one of more importants and that made some of the most beautiful Progressive in this country. This album is recording in Italian from label Vynil Magic for Europe market and because of this, lyrics are in English. It's a psichedelic space rock with a strong synphonic i ... (read more)

Report this review (#299858) | Posted by Joćo Paulo | Monday, September 20, 2010 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I listeen KORNELYANS "Not an Ordinary Life" for the first time about two or three years ago, and confess, I need more of a single audition, not to enjoy the music of this Yugoslavian band, but to recognize the magnificence of their music. In this Kornelyans albun you can find a mix of coun ... (read more)

Report this review (#281874) | Posted by maryes | Thursday, May 13, 2010 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Kornelyans are really 'not ordinary' in the best meaning of SYMPHONIC AND adventurous prog rock sense (*see last paragraph). WOW what an incredible PROG quite original and tasteful. I had the chance to listen the earlier Korni Grupa, I guess it's another music proposal, an important record ( the ... (read more)

Report this review (#199194) | Posted by Prog_Veteran | Thursday, January 15, 2009 | Review Permanlink

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