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Uriah Heep - Salisbury CD (album) cover


Uriah Heep


Heavy Prog

4.19 | 824 ratings

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4 stars Somewhere in your eyes / That very special glow / Something drawing me / To where I do not know / I never really thought / That I would lose myself / Now I'm going faster / Than anybody else . - Uriah Heep "Salisbury"

This album is I think "the" reason why Uriah Heep is reviewed here in this website. Through this album the band worked toward composing an album that blends strong elements of heavy metal drive with the complexity of prog rock. When this album was released it was kind like scaling down their debut "Very Eavy Very Umble .." because in terms of song structure and arrangements the band had demonstrated a much mature music compared to debut. This what I would say as progression because the music moved forward into a stronger direction in what later be called as progressive rock. Highlights on the album include "Bird of Prey" which has a powerful chord-fueled verses with keyboard-drenched interlude part. A folk-based acoustic song "Lady In Black" that brings us into a throbbing rocker with stunning and crunching guitar riffs. The album also features a touchy ballad-oriented song "The Park" that sparks the powerful voice of David Byron combined with etheral keyboard and acoustic guitar. This was really the track that color the days of my childhood and we used to sing along the melody, emulating Byron's lyrical verses. The harmonies produced from Byron's unique vocal and Hensley keyboard is truly awesome.

The title track "Salisbury" was my first introduction to this album and finally I bought the Monalisa cassette format right after the ilegal rock radio station called Blue Jean Racing in Bandung frequently aired this song. This long duration song has become my all time Heep favorite track. This 16-minute plus track occupies the largest space in this album. This prog epic starts off with a relative long exploration of brass and woodwinds work that would later characterize the main body of the whole epic. The music begins in relatively quite and slow passage and as the falsetto voice of Byron enters the scene the music moves into a crescendo with strong emphasize on brass section. The keyboard solo during instrumental break has an excellent combination of jazz and rock style during long instrumental break. The overall flow of this track contains segments with high and low amplification to accentuate the song's message. Segments where Byron enters the music at beginning of bar have a very nice and well positioned entry point. As a result it produces terrific experience for my listening pleasure. When I finally purchased the remastered CD version sometime in 2000 I have had a habit of repeating this track at least for the second time; including this time when I put some words about this track. It's truly a masterpiece song - for my personal taste. Great harmonies, great orchestral arrangements, great insertion of keyboard and rocking guitar solo that's Mick Box's unique and powerful compositions (structure and arrangement).

Other tracks featured in this album: "Time To Live" and "High Priestess" are another Heep's style excellent rock music. I have upgraded this album to the Sanctuary's 2003 and 2004 reissues of Salisbury with newly remastered, featured expanded artwork and slipcase packaging, and included alternate versions, B-sides, and BBC sessions. The reason is because I like Uriah Heep - be it a prog or non-prog music; it does not really matter to me because music is emotion. These gentlemen have stirred my emotion and this album is recommended!

Progressively yours,


Gatot | 4/5 |


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