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EAST OF EDEN

Eclectic Prog • United Kingdom


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East Of Eden biography
I think that EAST OF EDEN is a very good and worthmentioned prog rock band. They where formed in 1967 and signed with DECCA RECORDS around the year 1969. Their line-up included Dave Arbus (electric violin, flute, saxophone), Ron Caines (alto sax), Geoff Nicholson (guitar, vocals), Steve York (bass guitar) and Dave Dufont (percussion). Their sound was a mixture of jazz-fusion with many oriental influences.

Their first two albums where "Mercator Projected" (1969) and "Snafu" (1970). Excellent albums where you get an outburst of electric violin, flute and saxes combined with Bela Bartok and other classical, oriental and even gypsie tunes always of course on a heavy rock basis. Their most recent album to my knowledge is "Kalipse" (1999) but it is just to be mentioned. I would really like to see this band featured and I think it is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED that they are.

: : : Kostis, GREECE : : :




Complete discography:
1- Mercator Projected - 1969
2- Snafu - 1970
3- Jig-A-Jig - 1971
4- East of Eden - 1971
5- The World of East of Eden - 1971
6- New Leaf - 1971
7- Mercator Projected / Snafu - 1975
8- Masters of Rock - East of Eden - 1975
9- Another Eden - 1975
10- Here We Go Again - 1976
11- Things - 1976
12- It's the Climate - 1978
13- Silver Park - 1978
14- Son of East of Eden Live - 1990
15- Kallypse - 1996
16- Armadillo - 2000
17- Graffito - 2005

East Of Eden official website

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East of EdenEast of Eden
Import
Repertoire 2001
Audio CD$7.11
$7.00 (used)
Mercator ProjectedMercator Projected
Import
Esoteric 2008
Audio CD$11.31
$17.99 (used)
SnafuSnafu
Import
Esoteric 2008
Audio CD$11.38
$15.24 (used)
KalipseKalipse
HTD Records/ Castle Music 2002
Audio CD$4.80
$4.32 (used)
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EAST OF EDEN discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

EAST OF EDEN top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.01 | 100 ratings
Mercator Projected
1969
4.02 | 110 ratings
Snafu
1970
3.25 | 21 ratings
East Of Eden
1971
2.23 | 12 ratings
New Leaf
1971
1.50 | 4 ratings
Another Eden
1975
3.00 | 3 ratings
Here We Go Again
1976
1.50 | 2 ratings
It's the Climate
1976
2.00 | 2 ratings
Silver Park
1978
3.33 | 6 ratings
Kalipse
1996
3.00 | 4 ratings
Armadillo
2000
2.13 | 5 ratings
Graffito
2005

EAST OF EDEN Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

EAST OF EDEN Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

EAST OF EDEN Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.00 | 15 ratings
Jig-A-Jig
1971

EAST OF EDEN Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

3.50 | 2 ratings
Jig-A-Jig/ Marcus Junior
1970

EAST OF EDEN Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Snafu by EAST OF EDEN album cover Studio Album, 1970
4.02 | 110 ratings

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Snafu
East Of Eden Eclectic Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy

5 stars After the interesting experiments blended with 60s heavy psych on their debut album, EAST OF EDEN were in no mood to rest on their laurels with the sophomore release SNAFU. They refined the approach started on the debut and literally jazzed it up a few notches also replacing the bassist and drummer. Alternating between bluesy and ska guitar, free-form jazz and catchy jazz-fusion with ethnic world music incorporated into the fabric. In fact, the band was one of the very first to heavily incorporate influences and rhythms from around the world. In addition to standard rock instruments we also get violin, flute, saxes and various other wind instruments and percussion. One of the most surprising tracks is "Uno Transito Clapori" which is a strange hypnotic electronic piece that sounds like it would be more at home on a COIL album than a jazz-fusion one. Various other unorthodox experiments really add spice to an already strong album.

This album really delivers in the eclectic department and I am absolutely amazed that this album was released way back in 1970. Apparently they took the success (and influences) of King Crimson from the year before to heart and decided to pave their own unique musical path. They did just that and this is an even more enjoyable album than their debut. Unfortunately the experiments would end after this album and they would drift more towards a country folk sound which isn't surprising since a the next year a country folk tune "Jig-a-jig" was a huge hit in Europe and set the course for a tamed down more accessible sound. The track was released only as a single but is included on the remastered version of this album. It's excellent as well. 4.5 stars rounded up to 5

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 Mercator Projected by EAST OF EDEN album cover Studio Album, 1969
4.01 | 100 ratings

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Mercator Projected
East Of Eden Eclectic Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy

4 stars An amazing album from an amazing year ? 1969. The year where music crossed that invisible line into higher progressive arenas. This album was one of the first to successfully do just that but unfortunately remains rather obscure.

It is still rooted in the hard-psych of the late 60s but really jumps into new territory with the crazy different instruments used (electric violin, flute, bagpipe, recorders, saxophones, organs, harmonica, Indian thumb piano in addition to standard rock instruments), the wild jazz improvisation inserted where they see fit (especially the wild instrumental outburst on "Centaur Woman") and the sheer innovative and daring experimentation that they employ. It is very playful and it's apparent that good times were being had by all involved in its creation. It has many of the elements of progressive music that would be expanded upon and refined in the 70s.

Although I prefer the following album to this one, this is definitely an incredible album that I will be revisiting. It's a wild ride that has the best of what the late 60s psychedelic experience was all about with the added bonus of zany creativeness that makes it oh so fun.

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 Mercator Projected by EAST OF EDEN album cover Studio Album, 1969
4.01 | 100 ratings

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Mercator Projected
East Of Eden Eclectic Prog

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Somewhat more hard-edged and a little less jazzy than the followup (Snafu), East of Eden's Mercator Projected is a credible bit of early prog which compares favourably to King Crimson's debut or Van der Graaf Generator's The Least We Can Do Is Wave To Each Other. Like those two albums, it confidently bridges the psychedelic underground on the one hand and the new frontiers of progressive rock on the other. Dave Arbus in particular deserves acclaim for his violin and flute contributions. Although I think Snafu is the better of the first two East of Eden albums, their quality is so close that I think anyone who enjoyed one would also like the other.

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 Snafu by EAST OF EDEN album cover Studio Album, 1970
4.02 | 110 ratings

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Snafu
East Of Eden Eclectic Prog

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Jazzy without obviously slotting into any particular jazz-influenced tradition of 1970s prog - it's not heavy enough to be a riff on the Mahavishnu Orchestra, the inclusion of Dave Arbus' violin and various wind instruments sets the lineup apart from many other fusion outfits of the time, and whilst there is a certain playfulness to the album it doesn't sound like a product of the Canterbury scene - East of Eden's Snafu is a compelling overlooked gem from the golden age of prog. The band are at their best when they get into intense, extended jams, which the long running time of the tracks offers plentiful scope for, and the inventiveness on display means the album offers a stimulating mental workout for the attentive listener.

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 Mercator Projected by EAST OF EDEN album cover Studio Album, 1969
4.01 | 100 ratings

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Mercator Projected
East Of Eden Eclectic Prog

Review by friso
Prog Reviewer

4 stars East of Eden - Mercator Projected (1969)

Now here's an almost forgotten effort by a very early progressive group from England. One doctor of philosophy that retreated for a year on a mountain near Mecca (wind instruments), a painter/football player (sax & organ), a graphic designer (guitar & vocals), a student of oriental music in Turkey (bass) and a coca-coal addict on drums. "Take one violin which blows rock and Bartók, add one flute from the East, mix in Sumerian saxophones, bass, drums, guitar and liquid wordpictures - mark East of Eden", chronicles the backside of the sleeve.

East of Eden projects a psychedelic backgrounds, world music influences, classical influences and some jazz-bassguitar. There are some similarities to the King Crimson debut, mainly the avant-garde endings of the tracks, the use of up-tempo jazz parts, the grotesque arrangements and mystical atmospheres. A bit different from King Crimson's debut is the recording quality that doesn't allow all ideas to solidify and sometimes leaves us with pitch anomalies in the arrangements (which normally bother me a lot). The vocals of Nichelson aren't too melodic, but if you listen to the record a couple of times you'll get into it. I like his gentle approach.

Especially strong are the haunting ballads with classy violin-melodies, like 'Isodora' and 'Waterways'. Opening-track 'Northern Hemisphere' has hard rock vibes but the melodies are well developed. 'Centaur woman' is a psychedelic rock 'n roll track used as a vehicle for several solo sections. The production really lets us down on this track and it's the only weaker track of the album. On side two the first two tracks continue the style of side one. Third track 'Moth' impresses with its bombastic world music arrangement and mystical vocals. The ending track 'In the Stable of the Sphinx' has a lot of different parts and an eclectic progressive style. Brilliant ending that will satisfy proglisteners a lot.

Conclusion. Well developed eclectic progressive rock album that would have been a real masterpiece had it been given the proper production. Buy it I if you are interested in the development of the progressive genre or when you want a really original early progressive record that has a unique take on world-music influences. I'm going to give it the big three- and-a-halve rating.

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 Mercator Projected by EAST OF EDEN album cover Studio Album, 1969
4.01 | 100 ratings

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Mercator Projected
East Of Eden Eclectic Prog

Review by Apollo2112

5 stars WOW!

This album just blows me away. How East of Eden managed to be so 'progressive' and yet still rocking in 1969 just amazes me. The blending of eastern influence (as indicated by the band's name) puts this album over the edge. Still, the more traditional rock tracks (Northern Hemisphere, Isadora, Bathers) are still just as great.

Centaur Woman is definitely a standout... for more reasons than one. I personally love the short lyric sections and the riffs are just fun and rocking. Then comes the bass solo. Just perfectly executed, takes up the whole middle section (about half) of the song.

In the Stable of the Sphinx also deserves a mention due to its length. I have to say... what live versions there are of this song are much better... and shorter. The only less-than-perfect moments on this album come during the middle part of In the Stable. After a powerful opening riff, it sort of loses its direction. Thankfully, it gets better and ends strong as well. As I said, this track is better on bootlegs, getting shortened and joined with Bathers.

Northern Hemisphere gets my last shout-out. Very rocking track, got a spot on my personal "Prog that Rocks" compilation. Great opening... a riff that is not easily forgotten.

Overall rating: 9/10 (5 stars)

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 Jig-A-Jig  by EAST OF EDEN album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1971
4.00 | 15 ratings

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Jig-A-Jig
East Of Eden Eclectic Prog

Review by 1967/ 1976

4 stars And here we are served on a silver platter to a regrettable fact: East Of Eden Rearrange "Jig-A- Jig", an intriguing traditional and Decca decided to use the opportunity to build a fake album with the best songs of the first two albums. So it is not easy to judge this album. While "A-Jig- Jig" is a great album, recommended to all those who love the music of the 70's, on the other side "Jig-A-Jig" is a sick false and anti-commercial album... In short, "Jig-A-Jig" sounds like a commercial operation well done and beguiling. But not for this fact is not without a certain charm.

Musically, this album goes from Folk Rock to Acid Jazz, from Symphonic Prog to the experimental music in a mix that is not easy to understand but that captivates the mind and soul. Thanks to superior musicians.

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 Mercator Projected by EAST OF EDEN album cover Studio Album, 1969
4.01 | 100 ratings

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Mercator Projected
East Of Eden Eclectic Prog

Review by 1967/ 1976

5 stars East Of Eden... Oriental and Western music with Bartok! That's why I approached East Of Eden. And, I admit, I had read of their lack of success was another reason that prompted me to buy this album. Uh... East of Eden are not commercial for musical concept? I do not think this is the cause of the lack of success. In fact, King Crimson were/ are even less commercial music style and have/ had less poetry in their music. In other words, in my opinion, the failure of East Of Eden to be found in the fact that Decca did not know how to do promotion for them, given the music hard to classify.

This album start with "Northern Hemisphere" that with "Isadora" is the track more conventional, more POP and more commercial. If you think that this is the soul of "Mercator Projected" you are outside of the road, because "Mercator Projected" is also "Centaur Woman" a song with great bass soli by Steve York, in a song that is close to King Crimson but with more Jazz in the veins and also more colours in the veins. Great is also "Bathers", an emotional ballad, with great atmosphere. "Communion", insipred by a Bartok string quartet, is another great song, not banal but extremely magical, because too atmospherical.

"Mercator Projected" is not an easy album for 1969 standard, a perfect mix between Oriental and Western music with Bartok, a mix from Family and King Crimson (for example more understandable) and in my opinion with good appeal. Today a winner groupfor Jazz music but in 1969 a great example of Early Prog. The production is not perfect but great for 1969 standards, all focused on making intelligible the musical chaos of the band. But we must not forget that where music is more POP oriented (and mean to trivialize) the poetic magic comes across. certainly because of the great imagination of the authors but also because of the great technique and sensibility of the musicians.

At the end: if you do not know East Of Eden and "Mercator Projected" you should definitely make you a copy of the album and start dreaming.

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 Snafu by EAST OF EDEN album cover Studio Album, 1970
4.02 | 110 ratings

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Snafu
East Of Eden Eclectic Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

5 stars It's such a pleasure when I find a gem like this. Especially when it's from the late sixties or early seventies. I say that because I thought I had searched that era really well, so to go back and find something so valuable is just a real joy. Bazinga ! This is EAST OF EDEN's second album from 1970 and it's just as good as their 1969 debut in my opinion. I just can't get over how much I love these guys. I mean they are so inventive with the violin, flute and sax playing an important role. And they like to experiment and use dissonance too. Plus they can be so catchy with that rhythm section. Again THE PLASTIC PEOPLE OF THE UNIVERSE comes to mind at times with that Bartok inspired violin and killer rhythm section. David Hitchcock produced this album by the way.

"Have To Whack It Up" has this catchy beat as the guitar and violin play over top. So good. Vocals before 1 1/2 minutes. A lot of yelling ends this opening track. "Leaping Beauties For Rudy / Marcus Junior" opens with horns and random drum patterns. Dissonance follows as things get intense. A change 2 minutes in as an uptempo melody takes over. Great sound. "Xhorkom / Ramadhan / In The Snow For A Blow" has an Eastern vibe to start. A beat with horns kicks in before 3 1/2 minutes as the percussion also joins the already existing drums and horns. Some flute then the sound turns more powerful as the vocals stop. Horns and a beat then take over again. A drum show before 7 1/2 minutes.Violin ends it. "Uno Transito Clapori" has these experimental sounds that pulse throughout. "Gum Arabic Confucius" opens with bell sounds as flute joins in softly then percussion. It kicks in after 2 1/2 minutes with a catchy rhythm and flute. Dissonant horns after 3 1/2 minutes as spoken words come in.The previous soundscape returns. Love this !

"Nymphenburger" hits the ground running as violin and drums rip it up. Vocals before 1 1/2 minutes.The guitar solos a minute later then the tempo picks up after 4 1/2 minutes with violin leading. Such a catchy beat as the violin lights it up. "Habibi Baby / Beast Of Sweden / Boehm Constrictor" is exotic and psychedelic to start as distorted vocals join in. It calms down with intricate sounds before kicking in at 4 1/2 minutes.Too much ! Violins are slicing away as the bass throbs. "Traditional : Arranged By East Of Eden" is the short closer. Sparse sounds as reserved vocals come in. So cool.

Gotta love the cover art too. Amazing album.

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 Mercator Projected by EAST OF EDEN album cover Studio Album, 1969
4.01 | 100 ratings

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Mercator Projected
East Of Eden Eclectic Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

5 stars EAST OF EDEN are a band that has gotten past me all these years. Sure i've seen their name pop up in the liner notes on certain albums where it's mentioned that they've played at the same festivals as KING CRIMSON, CAMEL, CARAVAN etc. but i'd never checked them out until this year. Better late than never I suppose.This album really blew me away. It's inventive, challenging and daring to say the least.The band I thought of the most was THE PLASTIC PEOPLE OF THE UNIVERSE because the violin sounds very similar.These guys had so many great ideas though and a unique sound, especially for 1969.This album was very successful in France where they had several top ten singles.Violin, flute and sax are prominant along with the usual guitar, bass and drums.

"Northern Hemispheres" has this low end groove with abrasive violin early on.Vocals before 1 1/2 minutes remind me somewhat of Richard Sinclair. Some brief processed vocals after 2 1/2 minutes are followed by flute that takes over.That low end groove with vocals is back. Dissonance ends it. "Isadora" opens with flute as the vocals and drums join in.This is great ! Violin after 1 1/2 minutes when the vocals stop. Flute then replaces the violin. Check out the bass, sax, flute, guitar and drum section that follows ! So good. Vocals are back at 3 1/2 minutes. "Waterways" reminds me of one of the mellow tracks off of KING CRIMSON's debut from the same year. He even sounds like Greg Lake somewhat here. A change 2 minutes in though as the tempo picks up and we get a strong Eastern flavour. Amazing ! Love the drum work too. Sax before 3 1/2 minutes then the early mellow sound with vocals returns to end it. Well almost because a toilet flush is the last sound we pretty much here. "Centaur Woman" has some funny lyrics to it. It becomes uptempo quickly and it is rather Bluesy.The tempo does shift a lot on this one as well. Flute plays over top then sax. Some low end sounds when it calms down before 2 1/2 minutes. It kicks back in at 5 1/2 minutes with vocals.Some crazy sax 6 minutes in.

"Bathers" is mellow with violin and what sounds like mellotron strings. Reserved vocals too. A fuller sound after 1 1/2 minutes.This is excellent ! "Communion" is spacey to start then the violin, flute and drums kick in. Vocals follow.This reminds me so much of THE PLASTIC PEOPLE OF THE UNIVERSE. "Moth" opens with drums and sax. A calm with vocals before a minute as contrasts continue.Great tune. "In The Stable Of The Sphinx" opens with the phone ringing and someone talking before the music kicks in to an uptempo groove. Check out the violin after 2 minutes. Love this track. Nice guitar before 3 minutes that reminds me of SANTANA. It settles 5 1/2 minutes in. Dissonant sax 7 minutes in then it picks back up before 8 minutes.There's a cool bonus track of a cover of THE BYRDS "Eight Miles High" along with two demo tracks.

Thankyou Esoteric Records for this re-issue ! This is a classic !

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