Eclectic Prog • Czech Republic

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Framus 5 biography
Framus Five (also known as Framus 5; Michal Prokop & Framus Five; Michal Prokop a' Framus (5), etc.) were formed in the early sixties; Michal Prokop (vocals, guitar) was one of co-founders and later the spiritus movens of the band. Up to this day the band had constant shifting in the line-up, and more than thirty musicians went through it, but the most significant ones are Lubos Andrst, a renowned Czech blues guitarist, and Jan Hrubý on violin.

The musical expression of the band was meandering a lot, while keeping the common denominator. In the beginnig, they were attracted to the Mersey sound (remember that was inthe early 60s), later shifted more towards the rhythm 'n' blues, Memphis style (at this stage the band was reinforced with brass horn section).

Their first album, 'Blues In Soul'(1968) is exactly what its name suggests. However, a 1971 'Mesto Er', probably the most interesting point of their career for a prog enthusiast, with a prog rock that combined many elements, including blues, jazz big band, and poetry.

Pity the band was not recording anything else until 1980; Prokop was doing various other projects as well as being involved with a theatre; and when 'Holubí Dante' (Pigeon's Dante) saw the light of the day, the audience was confused with more commercial, disco approach. However, the 80's, which are everything but acknowledged decade for the progressive rock, actually saw the band returning to the form: 'Kolej Yesterday' (College Yesterday, 1984), 'Nic ve zlým nic v dobrým' (Nothing For Bad Nothing For Good, 1987) and 'Snad nám nase deti prominou' (Perhaps Our Children Will Forgive Us, 1989) are good art rock albums, untypical for the decade, with oboes and violins adding to the sonic texture.

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FRAMUS 5 discography

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FRAMUS 5 top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.40 | 5 ratings
Blues In Soul
3.93 | 18 ratings
Mesto Er
3.20 | 5 ratings
Holubí Dante / Pigeon's Dante
3.75 | 12 ratings
Kolej Yesterday
3.00 | 7 ratings
Nic ve zlým, nic v dobrým
3.86 | 7 ratings
Snad nám nase deti...
1.00 | 1 ratings
Černý ovce
1.00 | 1 ratings
Poprvé Naposledy
1.00 | 1 ratings
Sto roků na cestě

FRAMUS 5 Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

0.00 | 0 ratings
0.00 | 0 ratings
Live 60, Lucerna 2006

FRAMUS 5 Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

0.00 | 0 ratings
Live 60, Lucerna 2006

FRAMUS 5 Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

0.00 | 0 ratings
A? si pro mě přijdou
0.00 | 0 ratings
Odněkud někam
4.00 | 3 ratings
Pořád to platí 1968 - 1989

FRAMUS 5 Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

FRAMUS 5 Reviews

Showing last 10 reviews only
 Mesto Er by FRAMUS 5 album cover Studio Album, 1971
3.93 | 18 ratings

Mesto Er
Framus 5 Eclectic Prog

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Neo Prog Team

3 stars Not very well-known among Prog fans, Framus Five was definitely a legend of rock music within the Czechoslovakian borders.Formed in Praha in 1963, they were led by singer/guitarist Michal Prokop, keyboardist Ivan Trnka and bassist Ladislav Elias (he joined the band in 1967) during their early phase.Originally the band relied much on its reinforced horn section and their 1969 debut ''Blues in soul'' was exactly what its title suggested, an amalgam of Blues, Rock and Soul influences.By 1970 with newcomers guitarist Lubos Andrst and drummer Karel Jahn their style shifted towards more intricate paths.The album ''Mesto ER'', released in 1971 on Supraphon, featured several guest and previous members on drums and bass.

The whole story regarding this album is centered around the impressive attempt on the 19-min. title-track, which sounds a lot like MODRY EFEKT, drawing influences from Classical Music, Jazz, Psychedelic Rock and Soul.A great piece with excellent singing by Prokop and many different instrumental segments with romantic, dramatic and dark tendencies, evolving from orchestral movements to powerful, Soul-inspired horn parts and some sort of psychedelic overtones and containing some great organ washes and piano lines next to some dominant work on trumpets and strings.This piece has aged quite well despite its psychedelic lines, there are even some moments of intense Kraut-like jamming in here and a couple of moments with ethereal flute work, while the connections between the variations is trully convincing with the star of Andrst shining through his unmistakable guitar moves.Beautiful piece of art.The flipside of the original vinyl is not that convincing, it's standard Psychedelic/Jazz/Horn Rock, again Andrst's work on guitar is great with both psychedelic and jazzy inspirations, while Prokop's voice is always expressive and tireless.These numbers contain also Orchestral Pop textures, slight Folk influences and evident Soul and Blues touches, executed in accesible structures with split dynamic and mellow passages.Good tracks, but far from the musical concept of the album's centerpiece.

The band dissolved the same year only to return in 1978 with Prokop as the only original member, releasing four standard Rock albums, until a second demise occured in 1990.In 2000 a third reunion took place and Framus Five continued their career via studio and live performances.

Good document of early-70's East-European Psych/Prog.A great vocalist, a flexible sound and some unmet atmospheres of sheer beauty await every listener of obscure Prog throughout the album's title-cut.Recommended.


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 Mesto Er by FRAMUS 5 album cover Studio Album, 1971
3.93 | 18 ratings

Mesto Er
Framus 5 Eclectic Prog

Review by Marty McFly
Special Collaborator Errors and Omissions Team

5 stars If you're OK with brass orchestra (which helped them to distinct themselves from other bands at the time) combined with top notch Prog music + some jazzy elements (in form of soft electric guitar and sudden slowing down of pace) elements, you will love this record. I wasn't able to write this review for a long time. Too difficult music to capture its essence in words, but I'll have to try sooner or later. Not it's later.

There basically aren't traces of blues anymore. I'm also not sure to compare it with something known in "western" world, it's unique. As with most of Czech albums (ahem, when they weren't doing covers of otherwise un-accessible songs from UK/US bands). When trying to find flaws here, some non progressive elements, I'm almost unable to do so, as there is not much flaws to find.

This album is divided into side-long epic and then 5 shorter tracks + 2 bonuses. Title track Město ER (City ER) is story of crisis about being lonely in a big, desolate city in some kind of utopian/dystopian society. It's lyrical hell, because it's actually interpretation of poems by respected Czech poet Josef Kainar. Musically, it shows one of the best epics ever coming from Czechoslovakia, full of drum, keyboards, guitar solos, having weird, melancholic atmosphere and it's far from being empty track full of nothing. Don't expect repetition, this is highly original work. Whispered parts of lyrics, shouted ones, haunting keyboards (at times), solid drumming backing, very qualite guitar by Lubo? Andr?ť, even Psychedelic elements to be found here.

The rest of album isn't as good. How could it be in the shadow of this. But they're not dull, even not as good, they are trying to fight for their place on the sun

5(-), almost.


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