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Barclay James  Harvest - Barclay James Harvest CD (album) cover


Barclay James Harvest


Crossover Prog

3.25 | 182 ratings

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Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
1 stars First album from one of the most enduring prog bands around and certainly most achievably so, after completing one of the weakest discography ever (I almost feel like not adding IMHO). Actually this band really survives for its status in Germany, living mostly on headlining status that large market (as does Manfred Mann's Earth Band), which is crazy enough to support not one, but two versions of Barclay Lames Hardest. One of the things I will respect most is that their line-up will remain constant, even if the "fresh air" or "new blood" factors were never of application.

With such a bunch of bad tracks such as Taking Some Time, World Was Woken (not that bad, but clearly a lifted track from Procol), Mother Dear, Sun Will Never Shines (not likely to, with such an awful track), Good Love Child, their self-titled debut album is a fairly poor affair. Even their 12-mins epic Dark Now My Sky (starting ever so catastrophically on a cheesy narration), the only real prog moment of the album) is a mix of would-be grandiose Procol drama, often drowned in some cheesy Moody string arrangements, but it's clearly the only track worth remembering. It appears that the guitarist John Lees-written tracks are often the least weakest ones (the epic is his), while keyboardist Wolstenholme's songs seems slightly worse but it's not that flagrant.

What's hard to understand is how this band can be so bad when it was influenced by The Moody Blues and Procol Harum and I'd rather think of this album as "approximate rock" than progressive rock. They've accused themselves to be poor man's Moody Blues, but I'd rather think of them as tramp's Procol Harum after their poor first showing, which comes some three years after the wave it is trying to ride on.

Sean Trane | 1/5 |


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