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Eclectic Prog • United Kingdom

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Home biography
Home were formed in London UK in 1970. The band were centred around the fine guitar work of Laurie Wisefield, and the voice of Mick Stubbs, the band's principal songwriter. They released three albums between 1971 and 1973. The first two albums contained competent and reasonably original songs, some with progressive leanings.

It was however the third album, "The Alchemist" which was the band's masterpiece. This concept album is one of the forgotten gems of prog, telling a tale of supernatural events and the reaction of those placed in fear by them. Musically, the album sees the band taking an enormous leap forward. Sadly, the momentum was lost as quickly as it came, and "The Alchemist" proved to be Home's final album. Test pressings are said to exist for an unreleased fourth album, but if they do exist, they have yet to be released.

During their brief life, the band supported a number of top acts on tour, including LED ZEPPELIN and WISHBONE ASH. In 1974, AL STEWART invited the band members to become his backing band. Stubbs left at this point, but the others took up the offer.

Wisefield subsequently went on to join WISHBONE ASH replacing Ted Turner, while Cliff Williams briefly joined BANDIT then enjoyed a successful career with AC/DC.

Both Mick Stubbs and Drummer Mick Cook have now sadly passed away, but Wisefield continues to enjoy success with the "War of the Worlds Live" tour.

Why this artist must be listed in :
A fine but sadly almost forgotten band from the early 1970's who are frequently described as progressive in references to them. Their music fits neatly into the Art Rock category, but they covered a wide range of styles on their three albums. Their third album is an excellent example of a prog concept album.

- Pause for a hoarse horse, Studio album (1971)
- Home, Studio album (1972)
- The Alchemist, Studio album (1973)

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Buy HOME Music

The AlchemistThe Alchemist
Audio CD$10.30
$10.35 (used)
Pause for a Hoarse Horse / HomePause for a Hoarse Horse / Home
Yellow Label/ SPV 2008
Audio CD$5.29
$4.29 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
Alien In My Own Home - Tony Mathews (CD Used Very Good) USD $10.26 Buy It Now 33m 17s
Peggy Seeger Bring Me Home. 13Track CD Album. Appleseed Recordings 2008. USD $7.48 Buy It Now 35m 7s
Original Soundtrack - Home (2015) CD NEW [EP] USD $14.09 Buy It Now 37m 52s
SHEP & THE LIMELITES - THE CHIFFONS Daddy's Home/ He's So Fine 7" LOWRIDER USD $7.00 [0 bids]
42m 33s
78 Rpm Record Scat Man Crothers Walkin' My Baby Back Home / Honeysuckle Rose USD $25.00 Buy It Now 42m 43s
Leon Bridges Rare Authentic Hand Signed CD Coming Home + Photo Grammy Nominee USD $84.99 Buy It Now 42m 50s
Honey I'm Home! [12" VINYL] Laurent Garnier Vinyl USD $13.75 Buy It Now 43m 42s
Norah Jones ?- Feels Like Home (REF TS BOX 9) USD $8.24 Buy It Now 43m 46s
Melissa Etheridge Christmas In America 4trk Promo Cd 2008 Blue Xmas + Baby Home USD $8.90 Buy It Now 44m 52s
Dierks Bentley - Home (CD 2012) 12 tracks Country Brand New and Sealed USD $4.78 [0 bids]
46m 14s
Home Mike Andersen Audio CD USD $24.73 Buy It Now 46m 36s
Keiran Kane "Find My Way Home" CD O'Kanes USD $13.49 Buy It Now 50m 32s
Bonfiglio-Home for the Holidays CD NEW USD $16.44 Buy It Now 54m 54s
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Finding Our Way Home Audio CD USD $16.45 Buy It Now 57m 27s
Going Home Anders Audio CD USD $29.09 Buy It Now 58m 20s
RARE Ten Years After WHITE LABEL PROMO I'm Comnig Home STEREO/MONO FREE US SHIPP USD $26.12 Buy It Now 59m 52s
New Edition ?- Home Again (REF TS BOX 9) USD $8.24 Buy It Now 59m 55s
CHARLIE RICH "The Most Beautiful Girl / I Feel Like Going Home" 45rpm 5-11040 7" USD $8.79 Buy It Now 1h
Home With the Keys Audio CD USD $21.50 Buy It Now 1h 5m
Helen Louise and Frank Ferera 78rpm "My Old Kentucky Home " USD $6.00 Buy It Now 1h 5m
Joe Tex Keep The One You Got/Go Home and Do It 45 (A581) USD $1.99 Buy It Now 1h 5m
MOTI PELEG - Songs From Home - Rare 1978 AUTOGRAPHED Jewish / Folk LP USD $14.99 [0 bids]
1h 9m
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Home Bodeans MUSIC CD USD $7.44 Buy It Now 1h 10m
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BILL HENDERSON When My Dreamboat Comes Home [Verve V-8619] Black Label, Inner Sl USD $3.99 Buy It Now 1h 18m
Array - Going Back Home, Audio CD New USD $16.41 Buy It Now 1h 20m
New Orleans Saints STANLEY Records Miss Ego/I'm A Believer The Home Boys 45 USD $18.50 Buy It Now 1h 20m
JOHNNY LEE Please Come Home For Christmas / GLASER BROS Silver Bells *NEW 45 DJ* USD $2.95 Buy It Now 1h 21m
Scott Trio Oakley - Come Home Brother Johnson [CD New] USD $17.98 Buy It Now 1h 24m
One Direction POP Group -Take Me Home-2012 Brand New Album CD - NIB USD $11.99 [0 bids]
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Wil Bradford-Home CD NEW USD $14.13 Buy It Now 1h 29m
Urban Nature-Coming Home CD NEW USD $12.79 Buy It Now 1h 29m
Angel City Chorale-The Road Home CD NEW USD $20.15 Buy It Now 1h 30m
AUDIOWEB Bankrobber CD SINGLE Tubba Relish Who Are They? Home 4 trks USED USD $1.12 Buy It Now 1h 31m
A Prairie Home Companion, Soundtrack, NEW USD $10.20 Buy It Now 1h 34m
45 RPM - Charlie Moore - I'd Rather Be On The Inside/My Home In The Sky (1964) USD $6.99 Buy It Now 1h 35m
THE BLUE BELLES Cool Water NEWTOWN 45-5009 When Johnny Comes Marching Home USD $10.00 Buy It Now 1h 35m
Rare Savoy DOO WOP Promo 45 L'CAPTANS Say Yes / Home Work 1567 USD $13.00 Buy It Now 1h 35m
Dustin Tebbutt Home Australian Tour Poster Sept - Oct 2015 USD $7.49 [0 bids]
USD $11.23 Buy It Now
1h 37m
Duncan Sheik by Duncan Sheik CD Rock Popular Music She Runs Away Home FREE SHIP USD $5.79 Buy It Now 1h 41m
Singing The Spirit Home, Eric Bogle USD $36.71 Buy It Now 1h 45m
The Beauty Of My Home USD $21.49 Buy It Now 1h 54m
NEW SEEKERS 45 ON CBS " IT'S SO NICE TO HAVE YOU HOME " 1970s POP Marty Kristian USD $1.12 Buy It Now 1h 55m
Dlivr - Home Here - CD (2005 dlivr) USD $13.48 Buy It Now 1h 55m
Dave Edmunds 1971 MAM promo 45rpm I'm Comin' Home Mono & Stereo Versions USD $9.00 Buy It Now 1h 57m
Songs With Yaffa by Yaffa Yarkoni (CD, SISU Home Entertainment) USD $20.83 Buy It Now 1h 57m
Nagareboshi-Shooting Star Home Made Kazoku Audio CD USD $29.23 Buy It Now 1h 58m
TIME LIFE Classic Country HOME FOR CHRISTMAS Various Artists 2CD Lee Roy Parnell USD $44.08 Buy It Now 2h
NEW Nat King Cole SEALED SS MINT Walkin' My Baby Back Home FREE US SHIPPING USD $24.68 Buy It Now 2h
Long Way From Home,The Blues Of Fred McDowell,Vinyl,Milestone OBC-535 MSP-93003 USD $12.99 [1 bids]
2h 2m
Home - Fernando Ortega (CD Used Very Good) CD-R USD $13.38 Buy It Now 2h 5m
The Mountains Welcome Me Home Eve Graham Audio CD USD $9.59 Buy It Now 2h 8m
Liberace at Home LP CL-896 Vinyl Record 33RPM LP 1959 USD $60.00 Buy It Now 2h 12m
DOWN HOME BLUES CLASSICS 1943-1954 4 CD NEW+ USD $22.96 Buy It Now 2h 16m
Safe Trip Home Dido CD album (CDLP) Japanese promo BVCP-21567 BMG 2008 USD $37.46 Buy It Now 2h 17m
Turning For Home Mike Reid 1991 Walk On Faith Country Music Cassette NEW/Sealed USD $2.98 Buy It Now 2h 21m
TOM JONES green green grass of home Vinyl 33 LP Pop Music Album EX Stereo 1967 USD $6.90 Buy It Now 2h 21m
An Evening at Home by Teegarden & VanWinkle (CD, 2008, Wounded Bird) USD $14.20 Buy It Now 2h 29m
DAYS OF IRIS Days Of Iris CD Wishful Without Home First Day 6 trks USED USD $4.80 Buy It Now 2h 30m
JONI MITCHELL - Night Ride Home (CD 1991) USA First Edition EXC USD $6.79 Buy It Now 2h 31m
SPINDICKLE Two Strings From Home CD Sad Captain Outlaw Lady 12 trks EX COND USD $4.63 Buy It Now 2h 31m
Kenny Rogers & The First Edition CD album (CDLP) Back Home Again JPN promo USD $23.85 Buy It Now 2h 31m
Dorothy Squires - Voice of the Broken-Hearted:Coming Home 1936-1949 (3CD JSP) USD $18.70 Buy It Now 2h 33m
Susan Boyle / Home For Christmas CD New SEALED USD $23.99 Buy It Now 2h 37m
Wagner: Tristan und Isolde (Home of Opera) Antonio Pappano Audio CD USD $25.13 Buy It Now 2h 41m
Phil Collins - Take Me Home / Only You Know And I Know 45 1985 USD $0.99 Buy It Now 2h 43m
Gorillaz CD album (CDLP) Laika Come Home USA promo ASW40362-2 ASTRALWERKS 2002 USD $22.47 Buy It Now 2h 44m
Dezron Douglas Trio: Walkin' My Baby Back Home (mini LP) CD (Japan) USD $29.35 Buy It Now 2h 47m
Home Concert - Songs and Chamber Works, New Music USD $11.21 Buy It Now 2h 48m
David Essex Coming Home 7" vinyl single 1976 USD $2.38 [0 bids]
2h 54m
Plays Back Home Hymns .. ATKINS,CHET USD $4.90 Buy It Now 2h 57m
Home Blue October [UP DOWN RECORDS] [Audio CD] [Rock & Pop] No. of Disc 1 USD $13.59 Buy It Now 2h 58m
Crystal Gayle - The Sound Of Goodbye / Take Me Home 45 1983 VG / VG+ USD $0.99 Buy It Now 2h 59m
Leave Home Ramones UK CD-R acetate promo CD ACETATE WARNER 2001 USD $40.20 Buy It Now 3h
CLIFFORD T WARD - Home Thoughts ~ GATEFOLD VINYL LP USD $17.70 Buy It Now 3h
CD Jojo no Kimyou na Bouken Stardust Crusaders Warner Home Video Opening Theme 2 USD $24.65 Buy It Now 3h 5m
Trouble In The Home - The Thrashing Doves LP IN SHRINK w HYPE STICKER USD $5.59 Buy It Now 3h 9m
CD pause for a hoarse horse
~ USD $13.80
More places to buy HOME music online Buy HOME & Prog Rock Digital Music online:
  • AmazonMP3: Search for HOME DRM-Free MP3 Downloads @ AmazonMP3 (USA Only) | AmazonMP3 (UK Only)
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HOME discography

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

HOME top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.10 | 22 ratings
Pause for a Hoarse Horse
3.30 | 16 ratings
3.54 | 44 ratings
The Alchemist

HOME Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

HOME Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

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

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

HOME Reviews

Showing last 10 reviews only
 The Alchemist by HOME album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.54 | 44 ratings

The Alchemist
Home Eclectic Prog

Review by maryes

4 stars HOME "The Alchemist". Is an album that presents a kind of music ( for the most purist listeners ) which be in the half-way between the psychedelic movement "last steps" (in the late 60's) and the progressive rock "explosion" in the subsequent period ( early 70's) . They sound to me ( with a certain dose of exaggeration ) like Steve Howe or Jimmy Page came in studio with Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young for a session. Great part of the disk gave me this exactly impression, the vocals are very beauty (with use of voices counterpoints and choirs) and the musical "atmosphere" is almost the same to CSNY! The main difference is in the work developed by Laurie Wisefield in the guitars...remembering at the same time the " crackling " Page's style and the "western" Howe's "touch". The best (and more progressive) tracks are : track 5 "The disaster" , track 9 "Rejoicing" and track 10 "The disaster returns (Devastation)".... but, in general way all of tracks are good . My rate is 4 stars !!!
 Pause for a Hoarse Horse by HOME album cover Studio Album, 1971
3.10 | 22 ratings

Pause for a Hoarse Horse
Home Eclectic Prog

Review by historian9
Forum & Site Admin Group Site Admin / JRF Team

3 stars As the early debut of the band, I didn't expect much, and just seeing the cover one shouldn't expect much of prog rock going on. That said, this blues or british country rock like music is very charming and catchy. It does have some mellotron here and there as well as violins but don't expect anything too adventurous aside from guitar playing which does have some kind of original style to it, making it recognizable on all HOME recordings; this stuff might be interesting for WHISHBONE ASH fans. Not much of prog, but seeing as it is not that bad at all, this "feel good" record deserves a raise from collectors and fans only to three stars.
 The Alchemist by HOME album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.54 | 44 ratings

The Alchemist
Home Eclectic Prog

Review by progshachar

4 stars Great prog album. A fine addition to me collection Just heard it few times in a row and it keep grow pn me. The new remastered 2010 album sounds terrific. This is really a concept album. There is a plot and the music strongly supports it. The lyrics are nice, the singing is great and the music is brilliant. The albu, starts slowly and it progress literally from song to song. The finale - the death of the alchemist is oustanding. The bonuses are ok, not on the same level as the whole album. I am new to Home and I really enjot this brilliant album Really a great addition to any prog collection.
 The Alchemist by HOME album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.54 | 44 ratings

The Alchemist
Home Eclectic Prog

Review by stefro
Prog Reviewer

3 stars After two disappointing studio efforts, 1973 saw the talented British quartet Home take up a much more overtly-progressive mantle and produce this finely-crafted concept album known as 'The Alchemist'. It would prove to be the group's final release, but it would also prove to be a true underground cult classic and a much-sought after album that would enable the name of Home to live on through the ages. Thanks to the excellent reissue label Esoteric Recordings, Home's defining album is finally released in all it's remastered glory for fans old and new.

Featuring Mick Stubbs(guitar, vocals), Cliff Williams(bass), Mick Cook(drums) and future Wishbone Ash member Laurie Wisefield(guitar), Home's 'The Alchemist' was a critically-acclaimed yet commercially-ignored album, the kind of album that could only have been made in the heady days of the late sixties and early-seventies when experimentation and creativity were, unbelievably, the recording industry watchword's. Home's label, CBS Records, had given the foursome all the time and space they needed to create their magnus opus but yet somehow neglected to advertise the album properly, leading to poor sales despite the group's constant live performances up-and-down the country and the small-but-loyal following these shows cultivated.

However, while the group might not have made any money out of their finest album, the did make a name for themselves amongst prog fans, with 'The Alchemist' now regarded as a stand-out concept piece thirty-plus years down the line. Stylistically, the album does, at times, invoke the feel of 'Trespass'-era Genesis or 'The Yes Album'-era Yes, but with a rich palette of instrumentation that is all their own, including acoustic-and-electric guitars, mellotrons, viola's, flutes and horns as well as Mick Stubbs soul-flecked vocals. As the songs flit from slow-and-serene folk to raucous, symphonic prog workouts, the carefuly-constructed story - that of a small boy befriending an old wizard in a small Cornish village - starts to slowly unfold.

 Home by HOME album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.30 | 16 ratings

Home Eclectic Prog

Review by Norman Kiddie

4 stars This being my very first review on Progarchives, I would just like to say that this website is simply brilliant. Home by Home, being the bands second release following their Pause For A Hoarse Horse was a superb album. Mostly written by the late Mick Stubbs, who was also the lead vocalist, keyboarder and support or rythum guitar for Laurie Wisefield. The album starts with the track Dreamer which opens the album up very cleverly as the listener does not really know what to expect next. Heavy rock, blues, a ballad. This album features almost all of these genres and even a bit of folk on the lovely Rise Up. It is an album of two sides the better of which can be put down to pure taste. Personally I prefer the second side, beginning with Baby Be Friend Of Mine and ending with Homeīs greatest track Lady Of The Birds (also available as a live version on the BBC recordings). This track is what it is all about. Laurie Wisefield is absolutely stunning on not only this track but the whole album. I will never forget the sadness at hearing that Laurie had been hired to take over Ted Turnerīs vacant position with Wishbone Ash. The beginnig of a new career for Laurie, but the end of a great band for all those HOME fans. This is a four star album. I got my cd copy via EBAY. Itīs a Russian version.
 The Alchemist by HOME album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.54 | 44 ratings

The Alchemist
Home Eclectic Prog

Review by raleks

5 stars Undoubtedly (for me) (and after more than several tens listens) masterpiece of prog. This album have all I want from prog music - interesting melodies and arrangements (ye, there is big work for my brain and ears:) ), good vocal. But there is an unexpected thing - after some listens I've suddenly understood I want to listen and listen also most disharmonic tracks on the album - Disaster ans Devastation :) And also I can NOT remeber any prog album with such hypnotize riffs, simple and effective, hard- rockish, repeated and repeated and... mmm... very tasteful. Highlight! The Death... is very dramatic song and perfectly feet (in contrast) with final song. The last one is simple STRONG melodic song. I happy my collection is enriched with this stuff. Generally there are no weak tracks here. Undoubtedly :D
 Pause for a Hoarse Horse by HOME album cover Studio Album, 1971
3.10 | 22 ratings

Pause for a Hoarse Horse
Home Eclectic Prog

Review by prabbit

4 stars To these ears, this is a very underrated album, though I must confess to a certain bias on my part since I really do love this album... Anyway, this, the debut album by UK outfit Home is a quiet gem, one that reflects and refracts subtle shades and colors in the setting sun, rather than dazzling the listener with pyrotechnic displays. Laurie Wisefield's guitar is well suited to the material here and fans of early Wishbone Ash will probably find much to enjoy. Over the years, I've seen a lot of comments about this lp that describe it as country rock and very US influenced which is true to a degree, but I think that the real similarities lie with UK counterparts like Help Yourself, Man (it makes perfect sense that Clive John of Man is featured on this album), Family (John Weider also guests here), The Dog That Bit People, or even a folkier Andwella's Dream. These bands, to some degree, all looked to the U.S. West Coast groups for inspiration but they somehow still retained a very British air about them. People that dig Free's unfairly maligned Highway album should also like this lp. Standout moments are leadoff track Tramp which has a dreamy, wistful feel, the mournful title track (which contrary to what is written in the reviews above, is actually a touching ode to the group's battered equipment van, which apparently had to be put down after years of faithful service, using the metaphor of putting down an old horse to describe how they felt...lyrics include (approx, from memory) doors keep rattlin', roof lets in the rain...when they take you away, they're going to crush you to the know you served us well right to the end, we've got to find another friend...), and the wonderful Red E. Lewis and the Red Caps (a reference/ode to Jimmy page's first band). Most people prefer Home's 3rd album The Alchemist (which is certainly their most progressive effort) but for me, this is their best album. The second, self-titled lp has more elaborate production values but weaker material. The Alchemist is very progressive and has some cool tracks, but it sounds just a bit forced to me. Obviously, most others disagree... There is a tendency for hardcore music fans to portray their secret favorites as unheralded masterpieces that rival or even surpass landmark albums and I don't want to mislead readers: this is not a 5 star work of towering genius, but, it is a VERY underrated album that constantly rewards the listener by revealing its charms over time. It should also be pointed out that the CD reissue while offering decent sound quality, is mastered from a vinyl source, and being that the album's production was a bit muddy to begin with, a good remastering job from an original tape source would be most welcome.
 The Alchemist by HOME album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.54 | 44 ratings

The Alchemist
Home Eclectic Prog

Review by ClemofNazareth
Special Collaborator Prog Folk Researcher

3 stars Opinions seem to be split on the worth of this album. On the one hand, it seems to represent the best of Home's three studio releases. On the other, some pan it as lacking in focus, boring, even pompous.

I think it falls somewhere in between, with the pendulum swinging in either direction depending on what one is listening for. 'The Alchemist' is a well-defined concept album that tells the tale of a young lad who assumes the powers of a dying wizard and uses those powers to save his town from some sort of rather vague disaster, apparently suffering from the same fatal affliction as his mentor as a result. Because of his diminished powers he is reviled by those same citizens when he is unable to stave off the second wave of doom, and is murdered by an angry mob. The album closes with a kind of eulogy to the alchemist, although the lyrics don't quite match the album artwork so it's not completely clear to me which wizard is being eulogized. That's the concept part. As a tale the story line is a bit simplistic, so I can see where some would consider the musical accompaniment to be a bit pretentious in comparison.

Then again this was released in 1973, so some accommodation must be made for the time period, and the level of the story's complexity probably falls somewhere between Bowie's 'Ziggy Stardust' and 'Thick as a Brick' (both of which were released around the same time), and well short of 'Dark Side of the Moon' or even say, Jeff Wayne's 'War of the Worlds'.

But musically this definitely represents a peak for Home, particularly the guitar work of Laurie Wisefield. His playing is much more pronounced and complex than on the previous two albums, and is very close to what he would do for Wishbone Ash on 'Where's the Rub' a year later. But his playing is a bit one-dimensional compared to his later Ash work, where he would add the banjo and quite a bit of 12-string to his arsenal. Guest musician Jimmy Anderson adds quite a bit of useful filler with his keyboards, particularly the mellotron sections that help Home to shed a bit of their folksy/country reputation. Some of the various synth sound effects do seem a bit cheesy today, particularly the 'disaster' and crowd noises, but overall the music is more expansive than their debut and more animated than their rather staid sophomore release.

I would tend to lump this album historically and musically with Ash's 'Argus', Allman Brother's 'Eat a Peach', Lynyrd Skynyrd's 'Pronounced.' and even ZZ Top's 'Tres Hombres', all released around the same time as this one. Of those only 'Argus' can also make the claim of being a concept album, although musically it far outshines Alchemist.

So this is a decent album, although not as deserving of the 'lost classic' label that some would suggest. Key tracks include the title song for its emotive instrumental work; the brief but keyboard-intense "Disaster"; and "The Sun's Revenge" for its strong guitar riffs. So three stars are where this gets placed, along with a modest recommendation for those who enjoy guitar- dominated early seventies tunes, as well as those who get a kick out of the many concept albums that found their way onto vinyl in the early seventies. If either of these types of albums appeal to you then you'll probably enjoy this one, but otherwise it will probably end up at the bottom of your playlist.


 Pause for a Hoarse Horse by HOME album cover Studio Album, 1971
3.10 | 22 ratings

Pause for a Hoarse Horse
Home Eclectic Prog

Review by ClemofNazareth
Special Collaborator Prog Folk Researcher

3 stars While the ‘progressive’ label is dubious in the case of Home, the band managed to put out two decent and one very good album (‘The Alchemist‘) during their short existence of the early seventies. This is their first and one of the decent ones.

For a British band Home sounded surprisingly similar to any number of American blues-rocking groups of the same period: Cactus, Ramatam, Blues Image, Canned Heat, etc. The group’s lineup was distinguished by guitarists Laurie Wisefield and Mick Stubbs and their twin-guitar attack very comparable to contemporary Brits Wishbone Ash, a band Wisefield would join after Home’s demise. Bassist Cliff Williams would leave for a stint with Bandit before joining Aussie rockers AC/DC in the late seventies.

Like I said, Home’s sound is most comparable to that of Wishbone Ash, with an appealing twin-guitar rhythm, understated bass, and Mick Stubb’s fairly plain percussion. This debut album also features Man keyboardist Clive John and Family member Johnny Weider on violin on the closing track. This is an unexceptional album, full of blues-inspired riffs, early-seventies sentiment earthy lyrics, and occasional solo indulgences. As far as I know the album didn’t garner any hits, but was apparently good enough for CBS to bankroll two more releases before the group disbanded in 1974. Brit balladeer Al Stewart reportedly offered the group a job as his backing band after their final release, but only Mick Cook to him up on the offer as far as I know.

None of the tracks really stand out. “Family” is sort of a prodigal son tune, the title track tells the sad tale of a dying horse, and “Moses” is the closest thing to a Lynyrd Skynyrd ballad as I’ve ever heard out of a bunch of British musicians. “Welvyn Garden City Blues” sounds like a combination of honky-tonk blues and a little bluegrass, with the only thing missing being a nice bass fiddle and maybe a banjo.

This is an interesting history piece, but nothing to get excited about. Rewind reissued it on CD, but it is a bit difficult to find and probably not worth the effort unless you stumble on a copy in a dusty used record bin somewhere. Three stars for the well- formed guitar work of Wisefield and Stubbs, but not particularly recommended.


 The Alchemist by HOME album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.54 | 44 ratings

The Alchemist
Home Eclectic Prog

Review by bristolstc

1 stars This is one of the worst records ever recorded and one of the most overrated. In fact, this is down there with England and Fireballet as THE WORST PROGRESSIVE RECORD EVER. I have excluded some others that I hate, but it is this kind of snooty, pompous, arrogant, directionless, mindless noodling that makes people cringe when they hear the word "prog" and gives my beloved music a bad name. What people see in this album is beyond me. The concept is totally unoriginal, fractured, pointless, and says nothing. The keyboard arrangements show why I for the most part hate synthesizers, and Laurie Wisefield's post Alvin Lee and Steve Howe syndrome cold and emotionless guitar wanking makes this impossible to listen to. I gave this album at least 5 or 6 tries over the years and I don't own it now and never will again. Just how much I hate The Alchemist I don't know if I can even say, but I will tell you one thing- there are few albums I hate more. You would think that Home could have pulled off a concept that was better, but knowing Home's music these guys went from being a great rock and roll/folk rock band with slight progressive leanings into a nightmare of the worst progressive pseudo fusion trash ever. If you have to own an album by these guys then get their self titled second which I love sometimes and really enjoy others. It wouldn't be hard, but it's a lot better than this! So is there anything positive here at all? Really, no, save for the late Mick Stubbs' pleasant voice which can't do a thing to make his hideous concept work and the vocal arrangements are apallingly bad. This is also one of the worst production jobs I've ever encountered on a record. Let me say this- there are two worst productions ever- Shy's (known by that point in the US as Shy England) Misspent Youth which tore the band apart and this, but this would top even that one. The lyrics are a major problem, but it sounds so sadistic that you'd think Home were hoping to drive people to total madness with this horrible album. Are any of Home's records essential? No. I love progressive rock, I love all kinds of music, but I DETEST THIS ALBUM WITH A PASSION. I know this has just been one long slamming put down without much direction to it, so I'll end with saying this is the most pompous, overindulgent, overrated, sickening, and worthless piece of you know what that I have ever had the displeasure of hearing. Enough said!
Thanks to easy livin for the artist addition.

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