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Warpig - Warpig CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

3.19 | 20 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
3 stars Sole self-titled album from a Canadian heavy/proto-prog group that did not likely take their names from the Sabbath song. A double guitar quartet, even though Dana Snitch plays keyboards as well (organ & piano mainly) came from Southern Ontario (let's say Toronto was their backyard) and developed a hard-driving prog that hovers between Deep Purple, Atomic Rooster and other hard rockin' British groups of the times. Their only album got released twice, the second time in72 on a different label, got remastered and benefited from a new sleeve "artwork" (the one featured above), but the first pressing is now much- sought after.

The album opener Flaggit was also issued as a single and it's a catchy heavy rock up- tempo blues-derived tune, enthralling despite the band's lack of a distinct sound, but the guitars are well out front. Tough Nuts is more of the same. The following Melody With Balls is a slower and heavier track, where Donmoyer's guitar seems to have slept with Blackmore's Stratocaster and borrowed its timbre. The next (album-longest) track, Advance Am, is quite a (welcomed) change, but the piano-dominated tune is a rather patchy attempt at being progressive, though not entirely convincing, even if the piano seems to be played like a harpsichord. Rock Star is the B-side of the single, but from what I hear, it would've been more successful than its A-side. Sunflight is definitely one of the better track on the album, and is a bit reminiscent of Wishbone Ash and Uriah Heep. Next up is U.X.I.B. (don't ask), starting on a harpsichord that leads you into an organ and heavy guitar blues chords and riffs, before veering slightly psych and a tad oriental, like East Of Eden's debut. The closing Moth is in line with the rest of the album, but it might just be the fastest song of theirs (well outside the slow middle section), and derails completely at the end wuith that looney laughter.

While the second release of their album drew some sales, it might just seem to today's progheads that Warpig's work came a tad too late for that summer of 73. Then first the drummer first, then the keyboardist would leave the band and if the band remained alive, opening concerts for major acts throughout Ontario until 75, even starting a second album, it would be it in terms of releases. The Cd reissue of 06 on Relapse is a legit one and sports the second (London label) sleeve While Warpig might appear a bit raw and rough- edged to symphonic progheads, they were part of the second wave of bands behind the pioneering groups like Nucleus, Plastic Cloud, Collectors (future Chilliwack), Guess Who, etc?. By all means not essential at all, but still a pleasant manner to fill you shelves. Your call really.

Sean Trane | 3/5 |


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