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Procol Harum - Shine On Brightly CD (album) cover

SHINE ON BRIGHTLY

Procol Harum

 

Crossover Prog

4.06 | 387 ratings

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Easy Livin
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars A Regal Zonophone

Procol Harum's second album is absolutely essential.

Anyone with an interest in prog who has not heard "In held twas in I" (incidentally, more recently covered by supergroup Transatlantic) owes it to themselves to hear one of the earliest and finest examples of progressive rock from the late 1960's. This epic track in five sections has it all; superb vocals, symphonic keyboards, top class lead guitar, complex structures, obscure lyrics, etc. It still sounds every bit as fresh and inspired today as it did way back then.

I've always considered "Magdalene (my regal zonophone)", the short track which shares side two of the LP with "IHTII" to be an integral part of that piece. It would not have made sense when playing the LP to miss it out. It is a bit like listening to the second side of "Foxtrot" (Genesis), where "Horizons" makes for an essential introduction to "Supper's ready".

Side one of the album is more of a follow on from the first album. The five tracks are short, and relatively straight forward, with little to suggest the masterpiece which is to follow on side two. They are well performed though, if slightly weak at times. Tracks 8-10 shown here are "bonus tracks" which did not appear on the original album.

"Shine on brightly" is a key album in the history of prog, nothing less.

Easy Livin | 4/5 |

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