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Quicksand - Home Is Where I Belong CD (album) cover

HOME IS WHERE I BELONG

Quicksand

 

Prog Folk

3.68 | 29 ratings

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ClemofNazareth
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk Researcher
3 stars This is an interesting album from a band that isn’t well known. Quicksand were a Welsh group that appear to have started out as something of a cover band if you read between the lines of the liner notes for this album. Despite this the band’s bio on the back cover of the record states that they “were determined to give fans their brand of music rather than a pale imitation of others”.

Well, the tracks here are all original compositions as near as I can tell, but I wouldn’t say they are without some hints of imitation. “Empty Street, Empty Heart” for example features a guitar riff that sounds suspiciously similar to the one from the Allman Brothers’ “Sweet Melissa”, and the title track uses a bass line that I’m pretty sure these guys first heard on “Beginnings” while spinning their copy of The Chicago Transit Authority, an album that was a bigger hit for Chicago in the UK than it was at home. It seems unlikely the band members were not familiar with both of these records.

But beyond that the tracks here are both indicative of the style of blues-and-psych bands of that day, and show some decent attempts at innovation (mostly on guitar). The keyboards are mostly mellotron and piano, but neither Robert Collins nor the Davies brothers (no, not those Davies brothers) are particularly accomplished on keyboards. The acoustic and electric guitar work is better though, and these dominate most of the album along with some very pleasant harmonized vocals in places (“Empty Street, Empty Heart” and “Seasons” in particular). The bass on this album is all over the place, sometimes even out of synch with the rest of the music, but props to the guy for trying anyway.

The various solo vocal parts seem to be shared by at least a couple of the band members depending on the song, and since they credits don’t make it very clear who is singing what I can’t tell which one of them is out of tune on “Sunlight Brings Shadows”, but that is the one track that probably should have been an instrumental since the keyboards and drums are the best part of it.

The closing “Hiding it All” is an archetypical seventies soft-rock number from both a rhythm and vocals standpoint, and although the slow acoustic and electric rhythm guitar parts are nice ear-candy, they aren’t exactly pioneering.

I’m not sure these guys are really progressive folk, or really that they are even folk, but this is a fun album to listen to despite its shortcomings. I give it a mild recommendation to fans of music like Ambrosia, Argent and any number of pop-tinged artsy soft rock bands of the seventies. This is a low-end three star effort, with the one additional comment that the CD version does not appear to have been created from master tapes and so suffers at times from muddled bass and sounds a bit flat. If you run across it at a reasonable price, you could do worse.

peace

ClemofNazareth | 3/5 |

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