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Ambrosia - Ambrosia CD (album) cover




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3.90 | 163 ratings

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5 stars "Nice Nice Very Nice"

Poor old Ambrosia are still remembered primarily for their string of hits in the early eighties like "How Much I Feel" and "Biggest Part Of Me" all very pleasant love ballads but hardly Prog right? In fact there is a lot more to them than those singles. Their eponymous debut is an absolute stunner. Style-wise it could be described as a very proggy form of West Coat Rock incorporating elements of ELP,Bernstein and Blue Eyed Soul along the way.The opening track "Nice Nice Very Nice" seems to leap out of the speakers with its bombastic thudding contrapuntal base and swirling hammond organ and an extremely catchy chorus. The next track "Time Waits For No- one" is even more striking with its latin infused rhythms and one of the most inventive instrumental sections clearly inspired by Bernstein circa "West Side Story" Just superb.In fact it is interesting how similar to ELP the band sound on this track no doubt due to both bands being so heavily inspired by people like Copland and Bernstein."Holding On To Yesterday" is certainly not Prog even in the loosest sense but nevertheless is a gorgeous soulful ballad and probably an indicator of the more mainstream music they produced later on."Make Us All Aware" which opens side two is another brilliant and very proggy song with its celtic style instrumental section.Probably the most astonishing track is "Mama Frog" - a full on slice of Jazz Fusion even incorporating a couple of spoken verses from "The Jabberwocky". On top of the sheer sophistication of the playing, the actual production is first rate probably helped by Alan Parsons engineering input.Ambrosia would never produce anything quite as progressive as this album but I am probably one of the few Prog Archive reviewers who like all of their albums almost as much as their debut. Everything they did was pretty slick and classy to these ears anyway.As for the debut though I cannot recommend it enough.An absolute blasty of an album


Lupton | 5/5 |


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