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Harmonium - Si on avait besoin d'une cinquième saison CD (album) cover




Prog Folk

4.35 | 1383 ratings

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3 stars This is an album of immediately likeable and strongly melodic prog. I especially enjoyed the actual songs (as opposed to the final, 17-minute instrumental track), which have folk-style vocals that remind me of the great Scottish singer John Martyn (who's also listed om Progarchives), only they're in a charming kind of French I was hitherto unfamiliar with. The compositions themselves are typical of early 1970s folk as well, with this major difference that you also get lots of "symphonic prog" elements creeping in, such as dreamy twelve-string guitar arpeggios and majestic mellotron orchestrations. But the 17-minute "Histoires sans paroles" was a major let-down. It contains no captivating melodies as such, the band merely let one mediocre riff flow into another, some of the riffs (e.g. the waltz towards the end) go on for far too long, and the solo playing (particularly the flute) sounds pedestrian.

I simply don't understand how this album could end up in our Top-Ten of best-loved Prog albums! Maybe things would have been different if I'd grown up with it, but as things stand I would never rank it as close behind SELLING ENGLAND or CLOSE TO THE EDGE as it tends to be. It also seems less accomplished and far less exciting than certain classic albums which now find themselves a great deal lower in our Top-100, such as the best of Robert Wyatt, Gentle Giant or Gong. To make things worse, its sleeve design must be ranked among the greatest kitsch to have come out of the 1970s.

fuxi | 3/5 |


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