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Henry Cow - In Praise Of Learning CD (album) cover


Henry Cow



3.96 | 173 ratings

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5 stars A drastic, dramatic and difficult album to grasp, being both controversial lyrically and musically. "War" should seriously gain some radio play as it is the finest short song in the RIO movement ever penned, and probably the only Henry Cow composition with a proper hook. Wonderful sense of timing, catchy melody and menacing lyrics almost spitted out by Dagmar Krause, the result works fantastically. The real treat here however is the 15 minute "Living in the Heart of the Beast", a fabulous composition of avantrock, with one of the most powerful and dramatic conclusions I've ever heard in a song. The complexity of the piece alone rivals anything by King Crimson, paving it's way though a myriad of unique images and soundscapes.

Side two of the original vinyl consist of two sound collage pieces, which are enjoyable enough but are mostly for for people of particular interest (me personally find them both very interesting, "The Long March" being one of Cow's most thrilling collages), while "Terrible as an Army With Banners" displays the band at it's msot beautiful and moody. Yet again very powerful music and the most "normal" piece of music here. I consider this album one of the RIO essential though it might be not a good one to start with, at least not for newbies. A real octopus of an album. 4.5/5

Bj-1 | 5/5 |


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