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Barclay James  Harvest - Time Honoured Ghosts CD (album) cover


Barclay James Harvest


Crossover Prog

3.64 | 195 ratings

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Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / In Memoriam

TIME HONOURED GHOSTS always has had a special place in my heart, mainly of course because of its great artistic prowess but also sentimentally as its release coincided with some great times in my life back then and this album was closely associated to them. BARCLAY JAMES HARVEST finally has found the right formula with EVERYONE IS EVERYBODY ELSE and will stick to it with this new 1975 release. Although not quite yet successful, the band has broaden its fanbase (like me back then) and you could sense something was going on with this band which would go from obscurity to some relative stardom very soon!

The same recipes that succeed on EVERYBONE IS.... are re-applied here. Nine tracks in the 4-5 mns range, 4 from JOHN LEES, 4 from LES HOLROYD and WOOLY WOLSTENHOLME has even been allowed one credit with the wonderful BEYOND THE GRAVE. TIME HONOURED GHOSTS sound more of the same than its predecessor as the songs sound like they come from the same sessions. But as we have enjoyed EVERYONE IS EVERYBODY ELSE very much, why should we be complaining about?

There are galore of those symphonic prog pearls like the gorgeous HOLROYD's penned JONATHAN and MOONLIGHT which happen to be 2 of my favorite all-time BJH songs. What a beautiful world we entering when listening to these 2 tracks, so melodic, so delicate and we don't want to forget about tha magical sound of the harpsichord on MOONLIGHT. I am more of a JOHN LEES fan than HOLROYD's, but when he goes this way, no one can catch himl

JONATHAN is the perfect opener for the aforementioned WOOLY track BEYOND THE GRAVE, the most proggish track of the album with its grandiose keyboards athmosphere! Pompous, you said? well, pompous like that, i can take it every morning with my breakfast.

JOHN LEES is no slouch either on this recordeing with the opener IN MY LIFE with an upbeat guitar lick before turning into an athmospheric middle section ready to make a prog fan happy with its lush arrangements. I don't have a beef with TITLES, a LEES tribute to the Beatles, at least he doesn't plagiarize them, it's a respectful hommage to his heroes and i think it's well done with good taste.HYMN FOR THE CHILDREN is another LEES gem in the FOR NO ONE vein while the closing track ONE NIGHT goes back to LEES west-coast influences, another beautiful melody NEIL YOUNG or STEPHEN STILLS would have been proud to create.

I can't hear nothing remotely bad on TIME HONOURED GHOSTS; This is a great album of a band reaching his artistic peak.The only critic i could come up with is the rigid structure of the songs as some such as JONATHAN could have been used more room to develop when for example at the end starts a soaring beautiful guitar solo only to be cut after a few seconds...just when i was ready to enter heaven!!!.....I know, we are always asking for too much!!

Another great addition to a prog/collection! A must-have for any BARCLAY JAMES HARVEST fan!

4.5 STARS,

febus | 4/5 |


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