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Gracious - Gracious ! CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.73 | 182 ratings

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siLLy puPPy
4 stars Despite the ridiculously boring album cover that must surely rank as one of the lamest in music history, the music that lurks inside is actually quite good delivering an interesting early British progressive sound that could only happen circa 1970. This year hosted many a heavy psych / Beatles-inspired / classically trained prog band and GRACIOUS fits into that category but we must add the term eclectic.

This is one of those albums that is all over the place. Some call it messy or unfocused. Some may call it pompous and overreaching and it's obvious that at times this does seem like an amateurish attempt to create something grander than is actually realized. The music meanders through different genres ranging from heavy psych to mellotron drenched symphonic prog and even from ragtime to medieval folk music with a whole track devoted to a classical fugue. These parts come and go and ramble and twist and turn and you never really know where they are going. That's part of the charm here, at least for me.

I think I like the "Heaven" and "Hell" tracks the best along with the finale "The Dream." "Heaven" starting as a floaty mellotron rich track with nice ambient passages. "Hell" begins with a descending keyboard run simulating the great fall into the the depths of the abyss and carries through with a dark gloomy mood replete with keyboards and heavy psych guitars. "The Dream" is the longest track on the album with a length of 17 minutes. It runs the gamut of everything prog in 1970 with nice fuzzy guitar and lots of keyboards, mellotrons and a nice 60s groove and lots of trippiness! The music remains fairly accessible and melodic throughout the entire album. It all sounds a bit like if The Beatles and King Crimson and maybe Cream all got together for a jam.

This is one of those albums that does have some inconsistent moments and a rambling feel at times yet despite it all this is exactly what I like in music. It is adventurous, exciting, unpredictable and spontaneous. I enjoy the album from beginning to end and despite the awkwardness that occurs from time to time i simply don't find it detracts from the overall excitement of the album. The boldness and enthusiasm are what makes this for me. Certainly not a masterpiece but well worth having in any prog collection as one of those obscure additions that's worth checking out from time to time.

siLLy puPPy | 4/5 |


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