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FANTASY

Symphonic Prog • United Kingdom


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Fantasy biography
The story of this band started at the Chapel Farm, a farmhouse near Gravesend (Kent) were the band had their first rehearsals. It was the family home of singer Paul Petley, other musicians were Geoff Whitehorn (electric guitar), Paul Lawrence (acoustic guitar/vocals), David Metcalfe (keyboards), David Read (bass guitar) and Brian Chatham (drums), later replaced by John Webster. The lead guitar was by the promising Bob Vann but he died in a car accident, he was replaced by Pete James. The new line-up FANTASY sent a demo tape to the label Decca and changed their name in FIREQUEEN. But Polydor was also interested and they pursuaded the band to sign for them. Again the band decided to change their name, it became FANTASY, a name that fitted more to the style and flavour of the music. The debut album was called "Paint A Picture" and released in '73 (now on CD). Soon FANTASY belonged to the past, the tapes for a next album remained in the vaults of time.

Fortunately the label Audio Archives released these tapes as a CD called "Beyond The Beyond". This one is an absolute beauty and it contains nine very refined compositions with warm vocals and 12-string acoustic guitars, flowing and sensitive electric guitar and lots of Hammond organ and Mellotron. The highlight on this album is the track Alexandrie (almost 9 minutes) with the Mellotron in all its splendor: majestic eruptions and beautiful waves along a typical Sixties sounding organ. A MUST!

: : : Erik Neuteboom, The NETHERLANDS : : :
Fan & official Prog Archives collaborator

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Buy FANTASY Music


You're Too LateYou're Too Late
Hot Productions 1994
Audio CD$7.56
$14.01 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
BILLY IDOL flesh for fantasy PROMO 12" MINT steve stevens generation x 1984 USD $12.99 Buy It Now 27m 49s
Lennon / Ono: Double Fantasy (Canadian 12 vinyl LP; Geffen Records) New/Sealed USD $11.37 [0 bids]
34m 9s
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34m 14s
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38m 39s
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FABULOUS THAD JONES '62 Fantasy LP RED WAX PROMO Charles Mingus Max Roach HEAR USD $27.77 [0 bids]
USD $37.77 Buy It Now
41m 27s
Paul Bryant 45 FANTASY 'Sister Lovie' jazz USD $0.98 [0 bids]
47m 2s
MIDNIGHT FANTASY ..Electronic House 12 INCH... COME A LITTLE CLOSER USD $8.77 Buy It Now 57m 25s
Lizst: Piano Concerto 1/ Wanderer Fantasy Franz Liszt, Andras Ligeti, Budapest USD $3.89 Buy It Now 59m 47s
New Fantasy Life Original Soundtrack CD Japan AVCD-55040 4988064550401 3DS USD $60.00 Buy It Now 1h
New PIANO OPERA FINAL FANTASY VII VIII IX CD Japan SQEX-10432 Nobuo Uematsu USD $60.00 Buy It Now 1h
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(DJ181) Fantasy Rainbow, O Weirdo - 2012 DJ CD USD $4.53 Buy It Now 1h 5m
ESY MORALES & His Latin American Orchestra Jungle Fantasy 78 BRUNSWICK 03891 USD $25.77 Buy It Now 1h 5m
TOP 100 HIT: FIVE STAIRSTEPS PLAYGIRL'S LOVE & WORLD OF FANTASY NORTHERN SOUL 45 USD $16.00 Buy It Now 1h 8m
Heifetz Bruch - Scottish Fantasy LSC 2603 Classic Records 200 gram SEALED USD $49.95 Buy It Now 1h 9m
Christmas Fantasy Lester, Noel Audio CD USD $13.92 Buy It Now 1h 11m
MIKE CAMPBELL Secret Fantasy PAJ LP USD $1.99 [0 bids]
1h 11m
LENNY BRUCE Real 2 LP SET Promo w/ POSTER Fantasy F-79003 Comedy Vinyl 1975 USD $14.99 [0 bids]
1h 13m
? Peter Brown - Do You Wanna Get Funky with Me? Fantasy Love Affair-gatefold USD $14.99 Buy It Now 1h 14m
BILL EVANS EDDIE GOMEZ Montreux III FANTASY LP USD $1.99 [1 bids]
1h 18m
Rock 45 Creedence Clearwater Revival Commotion / Green River on Fantasy USD $5.00 Buy It Now 1h 19m
rare on Optimism Records! ALPHONSE MOUZON cd LOVE FANTASY USD $15.00 Buy It Now 1h 23m
MAGIK MARKERS - SURRENDER TO THE FANTASY NEW VINYL USD $29.33 Buy It Now 1h 27m
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USD $45.00 Buy It Now
1h 27m
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3 Lot CAROLE KING Pop Rock & Roll Music Record Albums Fantasy Simple Things USD $10.99 [0 bids]
1h 34m
DJANGO MODERN JAZZ QUARTET (1987) CD FANTASY USD $12.99 Buy It Now 1h 40m
Mr. Fantasy by USD $4.24 Buy It Now 1h 42m
FLORA PURIM STORIES TO TELL QUADRAPHONIC LP CD-4 QUADRADISC FANTASY Jazz Fusion USD $9.95 [1 bids]
1h 51m
PI-R-SQUARE: Fantasy 45 rare Funk USD $75.00 Buy It Now 1h 52m
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DAVID O'BRIAN : Fantasy (Harbinger)1982 SEALED Private NW Folk Rural Psych LP USD $9.99 [0 bids]
2h
NM 12"~MIDNIGHT FANTASY~NADIA~Is It Me Or Is It Her~[x5 Mixes/Remixes]~FREESTYLE USD $5.97 Buy It Now 2h 3m
Ron Holloway CD Groove Update Jazz Saxophone 1998 Fantasy USD $3.00 [0 bids]
2h 4m
Title: John Lennon Yoko Ono Double Fantasy 1980 Vinyl LP Record Geffen Records G USD $8.74 Buy It Now 2h 12m
Shock S/T Rock Record LP Fantasy 0061178 Germany USD $20.00 Buy It Now 2h 13m
Norman Rockwell: Nutcracker Fantasy (CD, Jul-2006, St. Clair) USD $5.74 Buy It Now 2h 13m
Dave Brubeck Paul Desmond Fantasy 3240 Jazz At Storyville USD $19.40 [4 bids]
2h 14m
(BX813) M People, Fantasy Island - 1997 CD USD $2.65 Buy It Now 2h 19m
John Lennon & Ono Yoko Double Fantasy 8 Track Tape 1980 Geffen USD $9.00 [0 bids]
2h 21m
ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK/ - FINAL FANTASY, VOLS. I & II - NEW CD USD $25.62 Buy It Now 2h 22m
MUSIC FANTASY 1 / VARIOUS NEW CD USD $15.84 Buy It Now 2h 22m
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EXILE - FANTASY NEW CD USD $24.49 Buy It Now 2h 23m
Diablo II 2 Soundtrack OST CD VG+++ Fantasy Game Background Music Role Playing USD $34.76 Buy It Now 2h 23m
NINA VIDAL - OPEN ENDED FANTASY (IMPORT) NEW CD USD $33.46 Buy It Now 2h 23m
Creedence Clearwater Revival Very Best Of 16 Gold JVC Fantasy Japan Vinyl LP USD $20.99 Buy It Now 2h 24m
JOHN LENNON/YOKO ONO Double Fantasy LP 1980 EX USD $5.99 Buy It Now 2h 27m
THE VENTURES Flights of Fantasy LP 1968 Liberty USD $6.23 Buy It Now 2h 28m
Joe Williams - Live - Great on Fantasy label LP sealed USD $19.95 Buy It Now 2h 29m
JOHN LENNON / YOKO ONO Double Fantasy LP 1980 SEALED USD $20.39 Buy It Now 2h 36m
TRAFFIC - MR FANTASY (UK) (VERSION) NEW CD USD $17.43 Buy It Now 2h 37m
John Hite - I'll Be Your Fantasy Cassette Đ1988 Prineville Oregon Country USD $23.00 Buy It Now 2h 39m
Chronicle, Vol. 1 by Creedence Clearwater Revival (CD, 1991, Fantasy) 20 Hits USD $7.99 Buy It Now 2h 41m
The Dave Brubeck Trio Fantasy 3205 Distinctive Rhythm Instrumentals USD $14.99 [0 bids]
2h 41m
Final Fantasy VI: Balance and Ruin + Bonuses - Limited Edition CDs - Kickstarter USD $199.99 [1 bids]
2h 45m
Dave Brubeck Quartet Fantasy 230 Red Vinyl USD $9.99 [0 bids]
2h 45m
Creedence Clearwater Revival Record - By Fantasy Stereo USD $4.95 Buy It Now 2h 49m
Gianni Monese & Orchestra-Oriental Fantasy-Nejla Ates-1958 LP VOX CHEESECAKE-EX USD $12.99 Buy It Now 2h 51m
LP (LATIN JAZZ) CAL TJADER "WEST SIDE STORY" RED VINYL ON FANTASY 3310 (LP VG) USD $13.00 Buy It Now 2h 52m
Nigel Olsson; Dancin' Shoes, Living In A Fantasy 7" Vinyl 45 rpm Record USD $3.75 Buy It Now 2h 53m
Charles Mingus Quintet - Chazz! - Fantasy LP! USD $39.99 Buy It Now 2h 56m
, Shostakovich Symphony No. 5; Rachmaninoff Fantasy for Orchestra "The Rock" Aud USD $9.29 Buy It Now 2h 57m
OVER THERE ALBERT WHITE RECORD LP FANTASY RED VINYL USD $5.00 Buy It Now 2h 59m
Dave Brubeck-Old Sounds From San Francisco-45 RPM FANTASY RED VINYL EP 4020-VG+ USD $12.99 Buy It Now 3h
Jazz Giants [Fantasy] by Various Artists (CD, Madacy Distribution) USD $8.99 [0 bids]
USD $11.99 Buy It Now
3h 5m
JOHN LENNON & YOKO ONO DOUBLE FANTASY VINYL LP GEFFEN GHS 2001 the beatles USD $14.08 Buy It Now 3h 6m
ANGELO Self Titled SEALED LP Vinyl Fantasy Records 1976 Original Prog Rock USD $6.99 [0 bids]
3h 8m
Vol. 1-Music Fantasy - Music Fantasy (2005, CD New) USD $13.13 Buy It Now 3h 8m
45 RPM Record Bad Company Rock N Roll Fantasy Crazy Circles Swan Song USD $4.99 Buy It Now 3h 8m
Best of 10 Jahre Fantasy by Fantasy German Schlager Import - 1CD USD $6.99 Buy It Now 3h 9m
CAL TJADER "Last Bolero In Berkeley" og Funk Jazz lp on Fantasy USD $7.99 [0 bids]
3h 10m
DAVE BRUBECK QUARTET - A LA MODE - FANTASY 8047 - BLUE PLASTIC - STEREO USD $50.00 Buy It Now 3h 14m
BLACKBYRDS Better Days FANTASY F-9602 USD $5.99 Buy It Now 3h 17m
DAVE BRUBECK QUARTET - JAZZ AT THE COLLEGE OF THE PACIFIC- FANTASY 8078 -STEREO USD $35.00 Buy It Now 3h 19m
Wes Montgomery And His Brothers Fantasy 8376 Wes' Best USD $9.99 [0 bids]
3h 21m
EARTH, WIND & FIRE Fantasy 06SP211 EP wb0803 USD $4.99 [0 bids]
3h 21m
The Joe Loco Quintet Cha Cha Cha Orig Red Vinyl LP on Fantasy DG NM USD $49.99 [0 bids]
3h 21m
The Dave Brubeck Quartet Fantasy 3245 Jazz At Oberlin Red Vinyl USD $17.49 [3 bids]
3h 24m
CARL ANDERSON Japan 1992 NM CD+3-D Sheet FANTASY HOTEL USD $15.99 Buy It Now 3h 25m
Celtic Fantasy by David (Violin) Davidson (CD, Aug-2008, Green Hill... USD $5.00 Buy It Now 3h 26m
FANTASY THREE Biters in the City 12" Rare Hip-Hop USD $54.99 Buy It Now 3h 27m
10" JAZZ LP The Cal Tjader Trio Fantasy 3-9 Self Titled Green Vinyl USD $9.99 [0 bids]
3h 27m
DVC " LET ME BE YOUR FANTASY" ALFA USD $1.80 Buy It Now 3h 31m
New Isao Tomita SPACE FANTASY SACD CD Japan F/S COZQ-1023 4988001771975 USD $70.00 Buy It Now 3h 33m
Revival by John Fogerty (CD, Oct-2007, Fantasy) SEALED BRAND NEW USD $8.99 Buy It Now 3h 38m
HARRY MORTIMER & HIS ALL STAR BRASS " FANTASY IN BRASS " USD $2.99 Buy It Now 3h 40m
Tchaikovsky Conc no 3 / Fantasy, Mewton-Wood, piano-Goehr...Concer Hall 1126 USD $12.00 Buy It Now 3h 44m
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USD $1.99 Buy It Now
3h 45m
BETTY EVERETT SWEET DAN // WHO WILL YOUR NEXT FOOL BE FANTASY ISSUE 45 USD $2.99 [0 bids]
3h 45m
WOODY HERMAN: "Brand New" SEALED VINTAGE JAZZ LP on FANTASY 1971 USD $19.99 Buy It Now 3h 46m
WOODY HERMAN: Giant Steps SEALED VINTAGE JAZZ LP on FANTASY 1973 USD $19.99 Buy It Now 3h 46m
WOODY HERMAN: Herd Live At Montreux SEALED VINTAGE JAZZ LP FANTASY 1974 USD $19.99 Buy It Now 3h 46m
WOODY HERMAN: Thundering Herd SEALED VINTAGE JAZZ LP on FANTASY 1974 USD $19.99 Buy It Now 3h 46m
CREEDENCE CLEARWATER REVIVAL - WILLY & THE POOR BOYS - FANTASY 1ST PRESS - VG++ USD $9.99 [0 bids]
3h 53m
Luis Gasca "Born To Love You" sealed Fantasy LP USD $25.00 [0 bids]
3h 54m
TOMITA ISAO-SPACE FANTASY-JAPAN 2 SACD HYBRID BONUS TRACK J50 zd USD $40.50 Buy It Now 3h 54m
LP paint a picture
FANTASY
~ USD $18.72


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FANTASY discography


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

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

3.29 | 73 ratings
Paint A Picture
1973
3.76 | 47 ratings
Beyond the Beyond plus...
1974
3.44 | 9 ratings
Vivariatum
1994

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

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

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

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

FANTASY Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Paint A Picture by FANTASY album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.29 | 73 ratings

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Paint A Picture
Fantasy Symphonic Prog

Review by stefro
Prog Reviewer

2 stars Another charter member of the early-seventies one-album prog club, this obscure British five-piece issued the album 'Paint A Picture' on the Decca imprint during 1973 despite both a late change of name(from 'Firequeen') and the tragic death of their original lead-guitarist. Unfortunately though, 'Paint A Picture' failed to catch the moment, and Fantasy subsequently disbanded despite having commenced sessions for a mooted follow-up and producing around half-an-album's worth of material that would only surface over two decades later. However, like many once-forgotten progressive groups, Fantasy's limited repertoire has been re-examined and reissued for the CD age, with 'Paint A Picture' gaining a small cult following in the process. Predictably, the oft- used tag 'Lost Classic' has been added to the equation, though in this instance it's a bit of a misleading description. Featuring an elegant symphonic touch and a whimsical selection of delicate, West Coast-tinged compositions, this is very much a pretty-yet-rather uninspiring experience that blends its collection of familiar ingredients without ever setting the pulse racing. From the earnest strains of the opening title-track to the colourless closer 'Silent Mime', 'Paint A Picture' proves a distinctly dour take on the Moody Blues/Procol Harum school of pop-laced progressive pop. However, that's not to say that the sounds of Fantasy won't appeal to those who enjoy the likes of 'To Our Children's Children's Children' or 'A Salty Dog', though fans of slightly harder and heavier material are advised to stay away. In conclusion then, 'Paint A Picture' is hardly awful, just very mediocre. STEFAN TURNER, STOKE NEWINGTON, 2012

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 Paint A Picture by FANTASY album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.29 | 73 ratings

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Paint A Picture
Fantasy Symphonic Prog

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

2 stars 2.5 stars, really. Another obscure album from an even more obscure band from the UK. Unlike their name suggests, the sound is not symphonic prog in the vein of Yes or Genesis (or another not so well known group with a fitting name, Starcastle). Fantasy plays what we can call song oriented prog that was quite already dated by the time their debut album made the shops. It was 1973, symphonic prog was at its peak and this band played basicly what was popular in the 60īs. Their sound reminds me a lot of Moody Blues and Barclay James Harvest. Unfortunatly nothing here is original or even in the same league as the aforementioned bands best works.

Iīm not saying that the music is bad. Not at all. First of all they are all very good musicians and they had a superb singer in the person of Paul Lawrence. The guy has a great voice. The instrumental parts are very well performed (with good use of the obligatory mellotron. although less than desired), and the production is excellent. There are several good cuts like the heavy MBīs influenced Politely Insane, Unfortunalty there are other not as interesting tracks too, boring even, but none is crap. The overall feeling is that the band was a late arrival in the pop-symphonic-psychedelic bandwagon of the late 60īs.

So, in the end, the feeling is pleasant, but nothing special ou memorable. However, if you like the aforementioned bands, you shold check this CD.

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 Paint A Picture by FANTASY album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.29 | 73 ratings

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Paint A Picture
Fantasy Symphonic Prog

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Whilst the top-tier prog bands had become rock aristocracy crafting baroque and finely crafted masterpieces by 1973, the somewhat more freewheeling spirit of the early prog scene - more plugged in to the counter-cultural underground and prog's psychedelic heritage, a little rougher around the edges as far as the production standards went, and a bit less hyped up about classical music - was being kept alive by Fantasy. Their debut album, Paint a Picture, reminds me at points of Pampered Menial by Pavlov's Dog with more accessible vocals (though, consequently, less distinctive vocals) and, at points, a greater influence from funk and other less traditional inspirations for symphonic prog.

Although I think its reputation has been artificially boosted by its long period of unavailability, it's still a charming enough album which fans of the sound of the early prog scene will find delightful. At the same time, you can see why it may have been overlooked at the time - the prog scene had already moved on from the more simplistic early incarnations of the genre that Fantasy harken back to, and there isn't anything here that is so groundbreakingly overwhelming as to point to a distinctive, fresh direction that is uniquely Fantasy.

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 Paint A Picture by FANTASY album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.29 | 73 ratings

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Paint A Picture
Fantasy Symphonic Prog

Review by 1967/ 1976

4 stars There are hundreds of bands who, for various reasons are not (or did not want to) go down in history. I'll explain better: Fantasy have produced an album in the style of Barclay James Harvest, The Moody Blues, Cressida, Genesis, Spring, Ekseption, Aphrodite's Child, Nirvana, Procol Harum... I.e. POP Prog, but it seems that they not have fired all the cartridges that were in the rifle. The band, in fact, did not have the promotion it deserved, because Polydor did not face adequate production. Listening to "Paint A Picture", however, I hear a beautiful album that not have the power of many other albums. Why do I say this? Because the compositions link the feeling but not present powerful to make a miracle. Certainly listening to Genesis hear music like that but you can breathe a different atmosphere: we perceive magic! Fantasy had probably made ​​an album as honest and good debut album, looking, then, to correct any errors in a second album. The production of "Paint A Picture" accentuates the lack of magic. In fact, the production is very clean. I would say that the production is too POP. Unfortunately I read this defect also with Barclay James Harvest, so I think it is a defect at the time was not seen as such. Technically, the songs are very simple, direct and engaging. The attempt to be personal builds a song like "Politely Insane", an excellent example of Spanish-Rock atmospheres acoustic Hard Rock, with great power and feeling. And also with good magic, thanks to brass and wha-wha effect of guitar (and of vocal parts). In contrast lies "Widow", with a good Folk Song with cello and piano, thoughtful and sad. It is striking, despite the concerns that I mentioned, as the songs are well written and played even better.

Ultimately, "Paint A Picture" is a great album if you like The Moody Blues, Barclay James Harvest, or Genesis: for you will certainly be a masterpiece. But it could be a better album without flaws that I have highlighted.

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 Beyond the Beyond plus... by FANTASY album cover Studio Album, 1974
3.76 | 47 ratings

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Beyond the Beyond plus...
Fantasy Symphonic Prog

Review by lukretio

4 stars Fantasy's second effort, Beyond the Beyond, was registered in 1974 but didn't see the light at the time and was only released in the early 90s. This is really unfortunate as this album is such a decisive improvement over their debut album "Paint a Picture" that could have represented a real turning point for the band.

Most of the songs included in Beyond the Beyond are of very high quality, and really show Fantasy at their best: solid rhythm section, beautiful vocal melodies and excellent keyboards and guitar arrangements, with David Metcalfe's mellotron and Hammond shining all through and Peter James' guitar being much more convincing than on the debut album. Beyond the Beyond also scores higher in originality and 'progressiveness' than its predecessor.

The highlight of the album is the 9+mins Alanderie, a beautiful blend of outstanding organ and mellotron work, great vocals parts (at times neo-gothic and aggressive, at times very melodic), excellent rhythm section with some great electric guitar work (at times sounding metal), all embellished by eastern and psychedelic influences.

Also worth of mention are the title track Beyond the Beyond (a tasteful rocker with some excellent keyboards work), the acoustic Reality (beautifully melodic song dominated by 12 strings acoustic guitar and voice), Afterthought (Peter James' guitar shines here, with a convincing guitar solo at about 3mins, and also great Hammond arrangements) and the Wyattian Church Clock. The other songs are less original and turn out to be somewhat less convincing, although still enjoyable (especially Winter Rose and Just a Dream).

Overall, a really good album with great prog songs. Not to be missed.

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 Paint A Picture by FANTASY album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.29 | 73 ratings

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Paint A Picture
Fantasy Symphonic Prog

Review by lukretio

3 stars Fantasy's Paint a Picture is an album you will enjoy at first listening. Very song-oriented melodic prog rock with decent keyboard arrangements (mostly mellotron and hammond), decent guitar work, good texture and very good vocals. The main problem with this album is that it won't grow on you beyond that, no matter how many times you'll listen to it. Partly this is because of Fantasy's plain songwriting which if on the one hand creates very listenable songs, on the other hand it takes away depth from their music. Partly, this is because of the general lack of originality in Fantasy's music (especially considering this is a 1973 album).

Overall, this is still a good album, and I very much enjoy listening to songs such as Paint a picture (average song driven by vocal harmonies over a texture of acoustic guitar and Hammond), Circus (beautifully played all through, with well crafted dynamics, a decent guitar solo about 2mins into the song and great vocals), Politely Insane (Fantasy almost turning hard prog with this little uptempo gem), or The Widow (short sad song with acoustic guitar, cello and piano forming a nice background for the vocals melody). The second half of the album is much more ordinary than the first half, and at parts it gets quite boring (e.g., Thank Christ, Gnome Song).

3 stars, well deserved.

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 Paint A Picture by FANTASY album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.29 | 73 ratings

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Paint A Picture
Fantasy Symphonic Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

3 stars I've heard people say that if you like SPRING you will like this band. Not as much mellotron on this debut by FANTASY when comparing them to SPRING but the focus is on the vocals (lyrics) and they are well done. Every member helps in the vocal department by the way. There's a couple of songs on this album that really do it for me.

"Paint A Picture" opens with soft vocals and organ, then a fuller sound comes in before a minute. Guitar before 3 minutes when the vocals stop. It settles right down with organ to end it. "Circus" is one of those songs I was talking about that just does it for me. It's kind of catchy and vocal-led early as the organ pulses. Guitar around 2 minutes after the vocals have stopped. Great sound when the vocals return after 3 1/2 minutes. Nice organ 5 minutes in followed by guitar.

"The Award" is my favourite tune on here. The vocals almost quiver and we get some vocal melodies too. It moves me for some reason. "Politely Insane" opens with strummed guitar then it kicks in quickly with vocals. "Widow" opens with melancholic guitar as reserved vocals join in. Piano and what sounds like violin too. "Icy River" has a good intro then it settles when the laid back vocals come in and the organ floats. "Thank Christ" slowly builds as strummed guitar and vocal melodies join in. Vocals after a minute. Mellotron in this one too. Nice guitar late. "Young Man's Fortune" kicks in quickly. I like the guitar before 3 minutes. "Gnome Song" is mellow with fragile vocals then mellotron. Drums after a minute. The tempo picks up with guitar. "Silent Mine" opens with organ and drums as reserved vocals join in. A drifting track really.

A good album with some really good songs. 3.5 stars.

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 Paint A Picture by FANTASY album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.29 | 73 ratings

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Paint A Picture
Fantasy Symphonic Prog

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars Another UK outfit with a style close the likes of early 70's British Prog bands.Formed in 1970 in Kent as ''Chapel Farm'',the original line-up consisted of Paul Lawrence, David Read, David Metcalfe, Bob Vann and Brian Catham.Unfortunately Vann was killed in a car accident and Catham got off the board soon after,but the rest of the band decided to carry on with Peter James on guitars and Jon Webster on drums (both coming from a band called ''Joy''),along with a new name ''Firequeen''.Focusing on original material they were finally signed by Polydor on a three-year contract and released their first album ''Paint a picture'' (original title was ''Virgin on the ridiculuous''),after they were offended to change their name.

A rather unknown and much sought-after album in the past,''Paint a picture'' pays a tribute to the albums which established the early-70's UK Progressive sound,next to the likes of BARCLAY JAMES HARVEST and, mostly in this case,CRESSIDA.That means that this is carefully-performed well-orchestrated rock music with Pop-Psychedelic elements, but also delicate guitar playing,symph-like keyboards and a heavy amount of vocal arrangements.Similarities with CRESSIDA are undeniable.So,FANTASY deliver mainly song- based tracks with clear and sensitive vocals and tried to mix the British Psychedelic sound with a somewhat Orchestral Rock approach,obviously based on the strong use of keyboards,mainly Hammond organ and mellotron.The album is rather soft and flows nice and easy from track to track,additionally it contains some very good and memorable moments.However, while CRESSIDA belong to the early British Prog movement entering the 70's,FANTASY presented the same thing three years later,when progressive rock had already worn better-sounding clothes.

Totally unoriginal yet undoubtfully pleasant and enjoyable,''Paint a picture'' speaks to fans of the afore-mentioned prog pioneers,along with early CARAVAN or even GENESIS.Recommended.

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 Beyond the Beyond plus... by FANTASY album cover Studio Album, 1974
3.76 | 47 ratings

BUY
Beyond the Beyond plus...
Fantasy Symphonic Prog

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Curious album, thatīs the best sway to describe Fantasyīs second album. I found it purely by chance and, judging by the bandīs name, I thought it would be something in the vein of Yes or Genesis. Not really. They are quite eclectic and interesting, sounding way too modern for the time: Beyond The Beyond doesnīt seem to be coming from 1974 at all. The production is excellent, very clear and balanced.

After repeated listenings Icanīt make up my mind if I really like it or not. It seems the band was on their way for something big, but the songwriting was still underdeveloped somehow. Not bad at all, but still it feels like they were in the right path but had not reached its aim yet. The better exemple of that are probably the longer tracks: Afterthought is very promising and strong, while the much more symphonic Alanderie with its eastern influences shows the band was not really ready for such undertaking. Well, thatīs just my opinion. The title track is also very nice.

Of course the musicanship is very good, with all the band members doing their parts very skillfully. I liked the keyboards parts a lot, with some inventive use of mellotron and organ. The guitar solos are also well done. The singer has a nice voice. The bonus tracks show the band in a more heavy prog mode, but again the music is very good even if they were not as well produced as the official ones. (and three of them have a differnet, more aggressive singer).

It is very hard to rate such an album. This is good music alright, but not really symphonic. It makes yu wonder how far this group would have gone if they had the chance to hone their obvious talents. For this one: something between 2,5 and 3 stars.

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 Beyond the Beyond plus... by FANTASY album cover Studio Album, 1974
3.76 | 47 ratings

BUY
Beyond the Beyond plus...
Fantasy Symphonic Prog

Review by Marty McFly
Special Collaborator Errors and Omissions Team

4 stars One of these bands where you can really enjoy symphonic melodicity. Not so pandering, the strength of this record lies elsewhere (I'm aware that it's in fact 90's release, but from current point of view, I take this as it is. First part of this albums being mostly soft symphonic rock, but not soft as weak, more like tender (and beautiful), I really felt like giving best mark here, but then came second half of this record and with it, something like heavy prog, which brings it down a little bit. But I remember, something like "epic", Afterthought improves whole feeling. So I hesitate again. And that it's 1974 instead of 1971/2 ? Well, I take this as that they matured. From current point of view it doesn't matter so much, now it's golden age of prog & -||- (the same).

5(-), well, some heavy parts are way too heavy and keyboards can sound annoying, but after all, they're just bonus tracks, aren't they ?

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