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Kayak - Merlin CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.34 | 96 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars Kayak - Merlin (1981)

In 1981 Kayak returned to their progressive roots with a semi-concept album about Merlin and the legend of king Arthur. The first side of the vinyl was filled with progressive, atmospheric and very melodic, yet rockin' conceptual music, whilst the second side of the record has some of the usual Kayak crossover/pop music.

The opening-track Merlin is one of Kayak's best. Very symphonic, bombastic and it really get's you into medievel times. The composition is very strong. Tintagel is melodic ballad with great arrangements and brilliant vocals by Reekers. The Sword in the Stone is a playfull, proggy track with great medievel compostion and a unique atmosphere. The king's enchanter continues this style. Niniane (Lady of the Lake) is a long ballad with a beautifull instrumental section with the recognisable piano style of Ton Scherpenzeel. The second side has poppy songs, I'm not going to discuss them.

Conclusion. The first side shows Kayak at it's best; melodic/atmospheric symphonic prog with a good concept. For those interested in this material I would however recommend to buy the 2001 Merlin - Bard of the Unseen album. Kayak finished the concept album and wrote many new songs and included these five tracks of side one. This version is more for fans of the band, but it's still strong enough to give three stars (keeping in mind the second side isn't that interesting).

friso | 3/5 |


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