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Jeff Wayne - The War Of The Worlds CD (album) cover


Jeff Wayne


Crossover Prog

3.96 | 179 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars Jeff Wayne - The War of the Worlds (1978)

Musical + disco + funny space sounds = prog(related)?

This is quite an entertaining concept album, but I would never call this important for the progressive movement per se. It's is however quite inventive in blending styles like symphonic rock, electronic music, disco and musical with some added space sounds. Some inventive amplification of keys and guitars are done very nice. Though the result of the instrumental section is very accessible, it's not too arranged to be distasteful.

There's a list of famous vocalists (for example leads of Thin Lizzy and The Moody Blues) which most of us will recognize and the instruments are played nice. The music is excessively repetitive, but the spoken word story line keeps you busy throughout the album. Though this might sound negative, this is actually a positive point: recycling themes on re-occurring emotional stages. Also it makes some of the themes very memorable, which gives the album a cohesive feel.

The storyline is widely known: Aliens from Mars come to conquer earth, the main characters try to run and suddenly all the aliens are dead due to earthly infections (bacteria, viruses). Though referring to the original radio broadcast of 1947 (if remember it well) the ending is still very very unsatisfying. This has it's effect on the music, there's no real end. Some bombastic conclusion on the end would have made this album a lot better.

Conclusion. A record that has earned it's place in music history. It's original, it's fun to listen to and it's shows some great usage of progressive elements explored by other bands of the seventies. My rating will however be three stars. This is by no means an excellent addition to any prog rock collection, but it can be quite satisfying for most of us. It's good, but not perfect because of the weak ending.

friso | 3/5 |


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