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Eric Woolfson - Freudiana CD (album) cover


Eric Woolfson


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3.49 | 132 ratings

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2 stars There is some dispute over whether this should be seen as an Alan Parsons Project album or not. Personally, I do sort this album under Alan Parsons Project in my collection. The theme (there is always a theme) of the album is the psychoanalytic theories of Sigmund Freud. This sounds like a pretty pretentious project, but the result is not really pretentious at all. They tackle the topic with some irony and a sense humour. However, it is a very intellectual type of humour and you might not understand it if you haven't studied Fraud. eh, sorry Freud. Personally, I find it really funny as well as serious, since I believe that Freud's theories have done more harm than good. So the source is very rich on material both to make fun of and to criticise.

I must admit that I was quite blown away by the first two or three tracks of this album that are very good (by Alan Parsons Project standards). The opening instrumental is very typical of the Alan Parsons Project, with its programmed rhythms and sax. The six minute title track that follows is, together with the more straightforward rocker I Am A Mirror are, in my opinion, better than anything (else) done by the Project. The guitar work is very good here, and I Am A Mirror has great, and very symphonic instrumental breaks. Great!

Little Hans, is pure Paul McCartney. This song could easily have been on Rubber Soul or Revolver! I like The Beatles a lot, but here it sounded a little bit out of place, but ok. Dora is an ok song as well, a slow and sweet ballad. But, by the time we reach It's Funny You Should Say That, it became painfully clear to me that the hopes set by the three first tracks were too high, very much so. It is really funny, but it hardly is what I would call great music. This music has value to me, but it is a very different type of value from what I seek from progressive music. This is enjoyable in about the same way as Monty Python's Flying Circus or something. (And really only if you know something about Freud).

After this point, the album visits many more musical places and it slowly disintegrates, becoming more and more disjointed and on some tracks you might legitimately wonder whether it is the same album playing or if you accidentally turned the radio on instead. Not saying that it is all radio friendly pop with absolutely no prog credentials. It just doesn't sound like a coherent concept album to me, rather it sounds like a "tribute" album to Sigmund Freud, done by several different bands and artists with no real musical connection to each other.

It is not until towards the end of the album when the title track is reprised that there is any sign of the album getting back on track again, but it does not happen, unfortunately. And even if it would have happened, it would still have been too late to save the album from mediocrity. What started out so good turned out to be quite unsatisfying in the end.

For fans and collectors only.

.and for Freud scholars.

SouthSideoftheSky | 2/5 |


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