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Crossover Prog • Netherlands

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Light' plays Art-Rock with influences of 'Ekseption' and 'Nice' and integrates jazzy brass elements like 'Colosseum' and Latin-American percussion work similar to 'Santana'.

Light were formed in the town of Gouda in the 1960s and toured through the provinces of the Netherlands in the late 60s. The band members were Adri Vergeer (piano, organ, mellotron, keyboards, vocals), Gerard Steenbergen (acoustic guitar), Joop Slootjes (bass), Hans de Bruin (saxophone, flute) and Sjaco van der Speld (drums, vocals). Eddy Barclay brought the band - then called " Light Formation" - to the attention of producer Bert Schouten. In 1972 "The Story of Moses" was published, having been recorded at Phonogram Studio in Hilversum. On the album Guus Willemse (bass), Hans Hollestelle (electric guitar) and Marian Schatteleyn and Robbie Dale (voices) appeared as guest musicians. The recording was a concept album, telling the story of the biblical figure of Moses. It was the only album ever recorded by Light.

Thanx to Guzzman for inspiration and research and to Jeromach for additional help.

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3.00 | 26 ratings
The Story Of Moses

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 The Story Of Moses by LIGHT album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.00 | 26 ratings

The Story Of Moses
Light Crossover Prog

Review by GruvanDahlman
Prog Reviewer

2 stars I love when things get pompous and the theme of an album stretches into the really heavy conceptual ideas. The very thought of putting things out of the Bible to music is progressive thinking and boldness if ever there was. There have been several attempts at doing just that. The more famous concept album is surely "Jesus Christ Superstar" or "666" by Aphrodites Child but there are others as well, such as Vox Deis "La biblia". Sometimes it works well and sometimes it doesn't. In any case the concept is not to blame. The musical ideas are either good or it isn't.

The Netherlands gave birth and still does to a lot of great progressive music. Light was one of them but not one of the greats. Usually I harbor a wish that "one album bands" released a sophomore effort but in the case of Light I don't. Why? Let me tell you:

I have owned a copy of their sole album "The story of Moses" for two decades now and I have really made an effort to understand its semi-masterpiece branding but have failed. It is not a bad album. It is rather nice, actually, but it never really reaches the heights of musical heaven I had expected. There are bits and pieces that are quite good but there's also large amounts of pedestrian stuff too. The organ sounds great and the musicians really do perform well. I think it's more down to the material. It has some features resembling both Brainbox and Tee Set, making it a band with serious progressive elements but rooted in a jazzy pop vein. It's not very complex, which is alright in itself, but the overall feel is an album of sombre jazz-stricken pop-prog with a sprinkle of classical themes (sounds quite nice, eh?) that's unfortunately a bit too bland for it's own good. Cressida (although from the UK) had the same (from my position) problem. One could have hoped for something a little more explosive at times that could break the monotony or anything else that might have made me raise my head in wonder. Sorry to say, that does not happen.

So, to sum up things I think that Light is an alright band that is interesting only because of them being a part of the development of progressive rock in the Netherlands but also as a world wide movement. Having said that I must conclude that Light made no real impact on the progression or development of the genre. They are one of those bands that just fizzed away leaving almost everyone oblivious to their existence. On the plus side I must mention the concept, which I adore, and the organ sounds terrific at times. This is mainly an album for the archaeologists exploring the ancient past of the genre we all love and adore.

 The Story Of Moses by LIGHT album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.00 | 26 ratings

The Story Of Moses
Light Crossover Prog

Review by toroddfuglesteg

3 stars Somehow, this album reminds me about another project from the same period with a lot of unearthly music and lyrics taken from the Bible. I just cannot remember it's name. Just the insane prices it was sold for on Ebay. Three hundred dollars for that LP. I would not be surprised if the same amount of money is demanded for this album, the only album from this Dutch band.

The lyrics is about Moses. I think that is kind of given by the album title. The lyrics seems OK and cannot offend anyone. It is said that this a Christian rock album. In that case, Iron Maiden's The Number Of The Beast album was a Christian rock album too. And the latter one was not particular popular with the Christian fundamentalists around the world. The story of Moses is one of the best stories from the world of literature and it does not surprise me the slightest that a prog rock band has made a concept album out of it. Christian or not Christian band.

The music is pretty good with some vibes from The Nice, The Moody Blues, Procul Harum and baroque music. The sound is old vintage with a brilliant keyboard and mellotron sound. The music is not particular overcrowded with instruments. The keyboard, mellotron and the pretty pleasant vocals suffice here on this rather understated album. The story telling is rather over the top though. I guess the band had one eye on the possibility of getting this music into a theater too. It feels a bit musical like, this album.

Unfortunate, my main gripe is the lack of any great songs. Good songs are a plenty. There is no great songs though and no songs which puts this album alight. But it is a good album and a great choice for those into the above mentioned bands. Let's hope this album does not spend as much time in a desert as Moses did.

3 stars

 The Story Of Moses by LIGHT album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.00 | 26 ratings

The Story Of Moses
Light Crossover Prog

Review by Guzzman

4 stars Long before there was a term like Christian Prog Rock, Dutch Formation Light recorded and released this album with it's biblical background. As a matter of fact it is a concept album, doing exactly what the title suggests: It tells the story of Moses, who is said to have led the Israelites from Egypt to the promised land, Canaan.

The story is told from the moment when little Moses is found floating in his basket on a river by a daughter of the Pharaoh, thus the album starts with some watery sounds, leading to the intro of "The water" with an organ that sounds very much like a real church instrument. This gives way to a very melodic piece where Adri Vergeer makes his mellotron, keyboards and organ sound like a whole orchestra, all in all giving the theme for the first parts of the album. There is even a bit of quite heavy drumming by Sjaco van der Speld.

On the way to the second title we hear Vergeers organ and Gerard Steenbergen on acoustic guitar, the music sounding a bit Moody Blues-ian. The voice of Marian Schatteleyn gives us the first vocal impression, when she's telling where Moses got his name from. Quite heavy dutch accent, she has, while the singer - I think Vergeer - doesn't give away his country of origin so easily as his vocals in english don't give a hint. He tells the first part of the story in song.

Then a bluesy guitar intro opens "The Blackberry Bushes". During this song there's sort of a Santana-esque part with all sorts of percussion, Hans Hollestelles electric guitar and Vergeers organ, getting jazzy soon when Hans de Bruin kicks in with his saxophone, the band reminding of Colloseum. This leads into another vocal part with Robbie Dale telling about the burning bushes. The rest of side one of the album is dominated by Greenslade-ian keyboards.

Side 2 opens with "White turns into black", there's a lot more of Vergeers organ, the bass leading the band into a piece that could stem from fellow countrymen "Ekseption" or "The Nice" accompanied by flute. This leads to "The nuisances" with - I'm quite sure - Robbie Dale telling about the plagues God sent (rain, hailstorms, frogs etc.) and the band giving a short acoustic impression of the nuisances. "The desert" and "The red sea" follow and have an arabian touch (or maybe it's just what a european thinks of as arabian) with de Bruins saxophone defining the mood.

Unfortunately the vocal performance is a bit weaker on side two. Also the ending is a bit abrupt and leaves you with the feeling, that there's something missing like a closing piece.

I sometimes think that "Light" were just a bit too early or too continental european for bigger success, which they certainly deserved. Although I've mentioned some other bands they are not plagiarising anybody, my mentioning them was just for comparing. I personally would have loved to hear more from the band Light.

"The Story Of Moses" may not be a masterpiece, but I consider it well worth for Prog-afficinados.

Thanks to alucard for the artist addition.

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