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Family - Family Entertainment CD (album) cover




Eclectic Prog

3.61 | 124 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars The second album by Family, although touching a huge variety of musical themes, like the previous one, is less experimental than Music from Doll's House, less progressive: it contains songs that are slower and more meditated, that develop closer to the conventions, without continuous changes of rhythm and arrangement.

The first piece (The Weaver's Answer, vote 9,5) is epoch-making, a song that gives the chills for the rhythmic progression and for how it is sung by Roger Chapman, who reaches here peaks that few singers can afford. The second (Observations From a Hill, vote 7+) seems a sort of relaxing break (and King's voice does not raise it) that would not have found a place in the previous album, where every song had continuous surprises. The third (Hung Up Down, vote 7+) song is a rock ballad with melodic insertions. The album has dropped dramatically after the brilliant beginning, but here comes a fantastic instrumental piece (Summer '67, vote 8), which brings together gypsy, indian and blues music, violin and saxophone chasing each other in what is a fantastic piece of Indian fusion. The first side closes with a long, romantic melodic ballad (How-Hi-The-Li, vote 7,5), sung in a fantastic and tender way by Chapman.

The second side opens with the hard rock of "Second Generation Woman" (vote 7,5), written and sung by Grech, who has a good rhythm, but for sound and arrangement is detached from the rest of the album. It follows a very original melodic song (From Past Archives, vote 7,5/8), which reserves the swing instrumental pieces, and then a more conventional, but pleasant country song (Dim, vote 7+). "Processions" is again an acoustic melodic ballad (vote 7,5) with a country flavor, embellished with a very sweet sound thanks to the piano phrases. Following is a song (again Grech on vocals) with sitar (Face in The Cloud, vote 7), an oriental ballad, a little lazy; the best parts are still the instrumental phrases. The final, grandiose, is left to the piano ballad of "Emotions" (vote 8,5), where the drummer and the voice of Chapman are very clearly, which reaches the climax in a melodic refrain with an epic and solemn impact. Masterpiece.

"Entertainment" is an album that does not develop the progressive solutions of the previous one, in fact it consists of more homogeneous pieces, mostly acoustic ballads. It has its peaks in the first and last song, two pieces with epic crescents. The first, in particular, "Weaver's Answer", remains one of the most striking pieces of the entire sixties period. In between there are country songs, hard-rock, swing, Indian, all cute, but no great songs. These songs are not connected by a fluid sequence that makes them feel a unique whole, like in "Music From Doll's House". It is a heterogeneous album, which presents the weak points in the songs of Grech, but overall it is very inspired and various, although not as revolutionary as the previous one.

Medium quality of the songs: 7,73. Vote album: 8,5. Four stars.

jamesbaldwin | 4/5 |


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