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Ambrosia - Somewhere I've Never Travelled CD (album) cover




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3.19 | 82 ratings

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5 stars Symphonic Pop anyone? Ambrosia's follow up to their progtastic debut is a very different sounding album in many respects.In some ways it is even slicker and poppier but at the same time it is more symphonic with Alan Parson's Project's Andrew Powell providing some excellent orchestral arrangements. And of course with Alan Parson's himself in the producer's chair this time the sound is as rich and as immaculate as you would expect.The opening two tracks "And....Somewhere I've Never Travelled" are very catchy pop songs played and sung with particularly gorgeous harmony vocals and lead directly into "Cowboy Star" the first of the symphonic tracks.The main song is fairly basic pop song but the instrumental section is a full blown orchestral extravaganza very reminiscent of Copland.If like me you are a Copland fan you will probably like this track- a lot.Side one is completed by a couple of pleasant pop songs.I am one of the few (I think) Prog fans who like big bombastic tracks broken up with simpler songs and actually make an album feel more balanced. Genesis were masters of that as evidenced on "Wind and Wuthering".

Side two is in some ways even more ambitious. The opening track "I Wanna Know"has a great emi-improvised slowburn build up before the song proper kicks in and a great big fat bombastic prog-rocker it is too."The Brunt" which follows is another very quirky number about dealing with traffic and likening it to a .The main instrumental section is head spinningly complex almost Zappaesque ending up as a bizarre soundscape full of jungle noises and chants mixed with the sound with the sound of elephants trumpeting in the background.The musical pastiche."Danse With Me George" presumably referring to Chopin's relationship with George Sands is even more ambitious at just over seven minutes and close in spirit to what 10CC were doing on the "Original Soundtrack" but frankly more innovative and enjoyable. The album is rounded off with a punchy power-pop rocker "Can't Let a Woman"jwhich perfectly shows up their dynamic style and a wistful ballad "We Need You Too"although even that last track has some dramatic moments. I must admit when I first heard this album many moon ago I found it almost too dense to fully appreciate but with repeated listenings the shear richness of this recording really does reveal itself.Clearly it is not for everyone but as a pop-prog cross-over this album is hard to beat.

Another Classic- 5 stars

Lupton | 5/5 |


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