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Neutrons Black Hole Stars album cover
3.46 | 25 ratings | 3 reviews | 16% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 1974

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Living in the World Today (6:11)
2. Feel (3:10)
3. Mermaid and Chips (4:50)
4. Dangerous Decisions (6:05)
5. Doom City (Scrino's Revenge) (4:00)
6. Dance of the Psychadelc Lounge Lizards (3:20)
7. Going to India (5:03)
8. Snow Covered Eyes (4:31)

Total Time 37:10

Line-up / Musicians

- Phil Ryan / keyboards, vocals
- Will Youatt / bass, guitars, vocals
- John "Pugwash" Weathers / drums
- Martin Wallace / guitars, vocals
- Ray "Taff" Williams / guitars, bass
- Stuart Gordon / strings, string arrangement
- Caromay Dixon / vocals
- Pique (Withers) / hand drums (2)
- The 4 Skins / backing vocals (6)
- The Quickies / backing vocals (7)

Releases information

LP United Artists #: UAG 29652

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
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NEUTRONS Black Hole Stars ratings distribution

(25 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(16%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(44%)
Good, but non-essential (40%)
Collectors/fans only (0%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

NEUTRONS Black Hole Stars reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by loserboy
3 stars Formed with members of the Welsh Progressive Rock band "MAN", a drummer from "GENTLE GIANT" and a string player from "The INCREDIBLE STRING BAND" , The NEUTRONS were a brief stint but left behind 2 fine albums with "Black Hole Star" as the debut in review. The NEUTRONS were the genius of Phil Ryan (Organs, synths) and Will Youatt (bass, guitars) and featured GENTLE GIANT's John Weathers (drums) and "The INCREDIBLE STRING BAND's" Stuart Gordon (Strings). The end result is a mix of music which sounds a lot like a fusion of GENTLE GIANT with RENAISSANCE with 10CC tossed in. This brilliantly recorded album shines thru with a high degree of progressive emotions and prowess never getting too over the top. The fine folks at BGO Records have remastered and combined their only 2 albums on 1 long play CD which I would highly recommend you invest in.
Review by Matti
4 stars I had no big expectations for this band, since it's almost completely forgotten and ignored. But what a charming album! First some obligatory band info: the founding members, keyboardist Phil Ryan and bassist 'Will' Youatt had a vision of a band of their own when the latter had joined Pete Brown's Biplokto! for gigs, which group broke soon after. But before NEUTRONS started life, they both joined MAN for a couple of years/albums (and Ryan returned to MAN in 1975 when NEUTRONS broke). But this is quite a different band than the guitar-oriented MAN! More emphasis on keyboards, either organ or MMEB-style playful synths. Singer-songwriter Martin Wallace was thought to be a frontman but the album includes only one of his songs because Ryan's and Youatt's ambitions got bigger. Wallace's Eastern-flavoured 'Feel' is a folkier song than the rest, but a fairly good one, like all tracks actually. GENTLE GIANT drummer John Weathers and INCREDIBLE STRING BAND violinist Stuart Gordon were added to the line-up and they brought just the right ingredients to the whole. Gordon brought also his girlfriend, 17-year old Caromay Dixon, as an additional vocalist.

'Living in the World Today' rocks deliciously, reminding distantly PINK FLOYD's 'Run Like Hell' for the guitar riff and two male vocals singing in turns from different speakers. It and the last track were recorded before the line-up was complete and they are the most rocking ones. Elswhere you hear some psychedelia. Some tracks sound a bit like NEKTAR. Quirky 'Mermaid and Chips' is fantastic, sort of a cross between Gentle Giant and 10CC, showing in full bloom the lovely sound and style of the band. 'Dance Of The Psychadelc Lounge Lizards' is as interesting as the title! Very charming 'Going To India' sounds a bit like early (Prologue-era) RENAISSANCE, but with more tongue-in-cheek hippie feel. 'Doom City' is a bluesy song, maybe the least interesting but nice nevertheless.

So, to say that NEUTRONS were just a spin-off of MAN is a bad understatement. Their second album (still good if not as great as this) was made under worse circumstances and it sadly doesn't share the same cheerfulness, the joy of playing, as this one. They both are released as a single CD in 2003, which is very recommended.

Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars A short-lived British supergroup, formed by ex-Man Phil Ryan (keyboards, vocals) and Will Youatt (bass, guitar, vocals) along with Gentle Giant's drummer John Weathers at the end of 1973, all of them played together in Pete Brown & Piblokto! in early-70's.The three of them actually recorded Neutron's first couple of tracks (''Living in the World Today'' and ''Snow Covered Eyes'') at Rockfield Studios near Monmouth, before being joined by Martin Wallace (guitar, vocals), Taff Williams (guitar, bass), ex-The Incredible String Band Stuart Gordon on violin and female singer Caromay Dixon.The rest of Neutrons' debut ''Black Hole Star'' was recorded in mid-1974 at Chipping Norton Recording Studios and the album was released in September 1974 on United Artists.

The debut of Neutrons was a mixed bag of MAN-like artistic Classic Rock and Classic 70's Progressive Rock, apparently sounding quite charming but a bit incosistent.There are some very good tracks like the opening bluesy Progressive Rock of ''Living in the World Today'' or the instrumental ''Dangerous Decisions'', which is beautiful, high class Progressive Rock with dominant piano and synth deliveries, short but great guitar moves and impressive keyboard solos in the vein of GENESIS.''Dance of the Psychedelic Lounge Lizards'' is another piece reminiscent of GENESIS' offerings with GABRIEL-esque vocals, highlighted though by Gordon's extraordinary violin drives.''Going to India'', ''Mermaid and Chips'' or ''Feel'' are soft but not equally impressive pieces with somesort of RENAISSANCE/YES/ILLUSION feel, but while they create a very deep atmosphere, they do not seem to have something new to add to an already saturated prog scene.''Snow Covered Eyes'' and ''Doom City'' is another pair of decent pieces, good organ work strong bluesy guitar parts, drawing heavy Psych/Prog influences in the vein of MAN.

Neutron's music is well-played and executed, while some moments on this album flirt with the grandiosity of the biggest prog acts of the time.On the other hand the lack of a strong personality and the shadow of MAN's music that covers the release prevent ''Black Hole Star'' from being a trully shiny star.Still recommended if you like all kind of 70's Prog.

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