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The Moody Blues

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The Moody Blues The Magnificent Moodies [Aka: The Beginning] album cover
2.32 | 111 ratings | 13 reviews | 5% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 1965

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. I'll Go Crazy (2:11)
2. Something You Got (2:52)
3. Go Now (3:12)
4. Can't Nobody Love You (4:02)
5. I Don't Mind (3:27)
6. I've Got A Dream (2:52)
7. Let Me Go (3:13)
8. Stop! (2:06)
9. Thank You Baby (2:29)
10. It Ain't Necessarily So (3:21)
11. True Story (1:45)
12. Bye Bye Bird (2:53)

Total time 34:23

Bonus tracks on 1992 Repertoire CD:
13. Steal Your Heart Away
14. Lose Your Money (But Don't Lose Your Mind)
15. It's Easy Child
16. I Don't Want To Go On Without You (Come Back)
17. Time Is On My Side
18. From The Bottom Of My Heart
19. And My Baby's Gone

Bonus tracks on 2014 Esoteric remaster:
13. Lose Your Money (But Don't Lose Your Mind)
14. Steal Your Heart Away
15. Go Now! (first version)
16. It's Easy Child
17. I Don't Want ato Go On Without You
18. Time Is on my Side
19. From the Bottom of My Heart
20. And My Baby's Gone
21. Everyday
22. You Don't (All the Time)
23. Boulevard de Madeleine
24. This Is My House (But Nobody Calls)
25. People Gotta Go
26. Life's Not Life
27. He Can Win

Line-up / Musicians

- Denny Laine / guitar, harmonica, lead vocals
- Michael Pinder / piano, organ, lead vocals
- Ray Thomas / flutes, harmonica, percussion, lead vocals
- Clint Warwick / bass, backing vocals
- Graeme Edge / drums, percussion, backing vocals

- Elaine Caswell / percussion

Releases information

North American editions entitled "Go Now-The Moody Blues #1" & alternatively "In The Beginning", with different cover art and 4 tracks switched (see in Compilations section)

Artwork: Shirley Scott-James with Nicholas Wright (photo)

LP Decca ‎- LK.4711 (1965, UK) Mono
LP Decca ‎- 6454 037 (1973, Netherlands) Entitled "The Beginning" and different cover art

CD London Records ‎- 820 758-2 (1988, US) Remastered by Anthony Hawkins with 13 bonus tracks
CD Repertoire Records ‎- REP 4232-WY (1992, Germany) Reissue with only 7 bonus tracks
CD Repertoire Records ‎- REP5077 (2006, UK) Remastered by Eroc with 14 bonus tracks
CD Esoteric Recordings - ECLEC 2474 (2014, Europe) Remastered by Paschal Byrne w/ 15 bonus tracks

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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Buy THE MOODY BLUES The Magnificent Moodies [Aka: The Beginning] Music

THE MOODY BLUES The Magnificent Moodies [Aka: The Beginning] ratings distribution

(111 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(5%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(6%)
Good, but non-essential (31%)
Collectors/fans only (50%)
Poor. Only for completionists (7%)

THE MOODY BLUES The Magnificent Moodies [Aka: The Beginning] reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Sean Trane
2 stars THIS IS NOT PROG. They started out as a pop group of the sixties before they became a household name with Days Of Future Past. They had released this Go Now single and a few other and this R'N B is not bad for the times. But if you want to listen to the symph Moodies Go Now elsewhere.
Review by Atkingani
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars This album is basically equal to 'Go Now' released a year before and already reviewed.

What is astonishing noticeable for both albums is that the same band that should receive a 1st-class treatment some months later, with new and sophisticated instruments, stereo recording, orchestra suite, powerful arrangements were so poorly produced.

Anyway, this album is good to hear if you are only trying to obtain a sabbatical from more complex progressive works. Then 'Stop!', sit and enjoy the songs and that's all. Nothing is left.

For collectors/fan only. Total: 2 stars.

Review by ZowieZiggy
1 stars Most of the songs featured on this debut album (this is the UK version - the US one being named Go Now) are cover songs from the rhythm & blues repertoire.

Gershwin, Dixon and some lesser known ones are on the programme. I have to admit that this first album has little to do with their later work and is not a great record. Of course, this one has to be compared with the comparable, but when one listens to the first Fab Four album, it was significantly better than this one.

The only outstanding track is "Go Now". A number one hit single in the UK. And frankly, if you except this one, there are hardly any other interesting songs featured. One of the bonus track, maybe ("Time Is On My Side"). But it doesn't add anything great to the original Stones version.

I am not very keen on this style of prehistorical music. And I doubt that even a "Moody Blues" fan can be enthusiastic about such a work. Three out of ten? Not even sure. One star.

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars "The Magnificent Moodies" is the debut full-length studio album by UK rock act The Moody Blues. The album was released through Decca Records in July 1965. The Moody Blues formed in 1964 in Birmingham and although they are predominantly known for playing a semi-progressive rock style, this debut album is a completely different listening experience.

Stylistically the material on the 12 track, 34:23 minutes long album, is 60s beat music strongly influenced by the late 50s/early 60s US rhythm´n´blues style and also the the harmony vocals and choirs from doo wop. The lead vocals are predominantly performed by guitarist Denny Laine, who is a skilled singer with a voice perfectly suited for the material. Some tracks feature lead vocals by flautist Ray Thomas, keyboard player Mike Pinder (only piano and organ on this album. The use of the mellotron was a few years into the future), and bassist Clint Warwick, but they mostly sing backing vocals/harmonies/choirs.

It´s simple and pleasant music, but it´s not exactly innovative or particularly original sounding. You can find hundreds of other releases in this style released in 1965, which are of the same quality or better. The addition of flute gives the music something a little speciel, but it´s not much ("Let Me Go" is an example of a track where the flute makes a positive difference). "The Magnificent Moodies" is well produced and well performed, but the songs just don´t stand out much from the norm in the genre, so upon conclusion it is a pretty standard quality release and it´s not a debut album, which in any way points in the direction of their future sound. That doesn´t make it a bad release, and it certainly has enough redeeming qualities to deserve a 2.5 star (50%) rating.

Review by tarkus1980
3 stars After owning a cheap knock-off version of The Magnificent Moodies for a number of years, I finally decided enough was enough and that I needed to get something that came closer to the original version of the album. I went out and purchased a CD version with this album, with bonus tracks and everything, and figured this would be all that I would need to become acquainted with this incarnation of the band. Unfortunately, I later realized that I hadn't grabbed the best possible version: while a remastered version of the album exists that also contains all 26 tracks this lineup officially recorded, it turns out that I'd grabbed a version that only has 16 songs, and which apparently doesn't even contain all of the tracks that were on the original album. And so, I'm reviewing a version of this album that doesn't exactly match what other (e.g. well-informed) people will have available to them should they wish to purchase this, or would have bought for themselves already. Sheesh, it's hard enough to get people to pay attention to this version of the group: it's made all the more difficult to take its existence seriously when there are so many conflicting versions of the album floating around (like what also happened with all of the different versions of the first Genesis album). It doesn't help that my version is missing a few tracks that are minor classics; I had to hunt down "Boulevard De La Madelaine" on my own later.

Still, I can only review what I have, and this does feel like less of a patchwork release than does that Time is On My Side album I've owned for so long, so I press onward. The truth is, I don't totally get why some people praise this version of the group so vehemently (aside from possibly overreacting in dislike of the "regular" version of the group), but that doesn't mean it's not without strong merits. The band doesn't rock very hard, even by 1965 standards (of course, the later band didn't rock very hard by any standards, not that that was a major problem), but the band isn't sloppy either, and it sounds pretty tight and snappy. The vocal harmonies are different from the classic sound, what with having no Hayward or Lodge and having Denny Laine, but Pinder and Thomas are around, and they sound just as distinct now as they would later. The instrumentation is fairly standard, apart from a few bits of flute here and there, but Pinder presents himself as a solid R&B pianist, and the band shows a decent knack for generating excitement and for showing a flair for the dramatic.

So yeah, the band had a few good things going for it. As far as the songs go, there are only a few major standouts, but most of them are at least decent. As mentioned in the last review, the big highlight is "Go Now," which somehow manages to have a huge, anthemic sound despite terrible production. Heck, maybe it's partially because of the terrible production; the song ends up feeling like it's somehow existed forever, and that if it didn't exist the universe would be worse off. Of course, it's not actually that amazing, but it's got great vocal harmonies, a decent enough lead vocal from Laine, and a bunch of soulful piano lines, so it's still a pretty great song.

As easy as it would be to dismiss this just "Go Now" and filler, though (and technically that kinda sorta was how it happened), a few of the other songs definitely stand out as well. The opening James Brown cover, "I'll Go Crazy," has some silly call-and-response action going on in the beginning, but it also has a really fun piano-driven groove and a bunch of great start-and-stop vocal parts, so it can stick around. "Something You Got" might have gone down as unremarkable filler otherwise, but for some reason just adding a flute to the sound gives it a slightly exotic sound, and it kinda works. Another James Brown cover, "I Don't Mind," features a nice Pinder vocal, and as mentioned before, it's tons better than the Who cover of the same song. An original song, "Stop," is one of the first betrayals that the band would eventually move away from standard R&B, thus passing the Rubber Soul test (roughly speaking, if a song was released in 1965 or afterwards, but sounds like it belongs in 1964 or earlier, I say it fails the RS test; otherwise, a song passes), and it's a good one. Ray Thomas gets a great vocal spotlight in a cover of a Gershwin song, "Ain't Necessarily So"; it's a good reminder that Ray, aside from being the flautist and the band's caretaker of childlike whimsy, was a fine tenor in his own right. And finally, "It's Easy Child" would have made a really great 1963 Beatles song, and that's ok by me.

The rest of the tracks are just kinda okayish, but except for a couple of them being really boring, they're at least passable. So overall, this is a decent enough album, and while regular fans of the band would have no reason to bother picking this up, "pop music historians" who happen to like the group would get some value out of this. If that's you, get it.

PS: I have to say, though, that the liner notes to this album have to be one of the obnoxiously pissy things I've ever read. The bulk of it is useful information about the band during this time, but it's largely ruined by whining that the later version of the band ("lite psychadelia" for "aging baby boomers") became popular while this one faded into footnote territory. Uh, not to sound too snarky about an album that I more or less like, but maybe if this version of the band was more interesting and distinctive, it wouldn't be a footnote ...

Review by Tarcisio Moura
2 stars Well, I really liked Tarkus1980 in depth review of this album here. At last somene did it! Because there is not much to say about it, at least prog wise. The Moody Blues MKI was not an outstanding band from hundreds of others at the time. Their repertoire is the usual: blues, R & B and soul covers, some merseybeat stuff and all. The only real highlight is the famous Go Now!, which deserverly was a big hit for them. The production was quite poor and the performances are ok. Mike Pinder´s playing however shows he was an excellent pianist already, with several tasteful breaks.

It´s hard to believe that this is the band that only one year after that would record such powerful and groundbreaking stuff as Days Of Future Past. Well, not exactly the same band, since guitarrist Denny Laine and bassist Clint Warwick would be gone and the classic line up would reunite for a string of important records. Still, it was a stunning achievement for such little time and such young outfit. They had a real special chemistry. However, the early Moody Blues were not. And I agree with the ones who think they were two completely different bands. It seems that even MB themselves see that way.

So in the end I found this CD a curio and nothing more. This surely for the collectors and completionists. One and a half star, rounded to two because of Go Now!

Review by Matti
2 stars The classic (67-72) Moody Blues means a lot to me, but I can't say I was very excited to get the Eoteric Recordings' reissue of this sole album of the MB Mk. 1, served with each non-album track they recorded up to the end of 1966. As you probably know, this was a totally different band than the one featuring the new guy Justin Hayward and John Lodge, who had already been around in pre-Moody Blues phases.

This single-oriented band played basically r&b of the black American artists, doing mostly covers (such as their biggest hit 'Go Now'). The singer-guitarist Denny Laine was the keyboard player Mike Pinder's songwriting partner as they gradually shifted to their original repertoire on further singles. I won't deal with the songs very deeply, because they just don't interest me enough to listen to more than [barely] once, which is not to say they wouldn't be good within the genre in question, or as the popular music preceding the great watershed year 1967.

The Gershwin tune 'It Ain't Necessarily So' is among the nicest tracks on the main album, thanks for the recognizable Ray Thomas vocals. A 7" B-side song 'Time Is on My Side' (better known as the Rolling Stones version) is a good example of the vocal harmonies, the one feature that was continued and improved in the classic era. The Laine/Pinder compositions at the end of this phase are naturally more interesting to hear than the numerous covers. My favourite - and frankly the only one I knew besides 'Go Now' - is easily 'Boulevard de Madeleine', which I also know as a good Finnish cover by Pate Mustajärvi.

The ER reissue gets the biggest applauses for Mark Powell's very detailed and long liner notes that tell everything you ever want to know of the early history of the Moody Blues. (When it comes to the rating, I would prefer not to give any rating at all. Please note that my two stars are very subjective, completely ignoring the context of pre-1967 pop music that I don't care much about in the first place.)

Latest members reviews

2 stars Just like PFM's first record(not exactly but I Quelli) is this first Moody Blues record is a quite nice little record. "The Magnificent Moodies" from 1966 though has little in common with the later more symphonic sound and nothing to do with prog feelings. Unlike other bands of those days The ... (read more)

Report this review (#1108737) | Posted by DrömmarenAdrian | Monday, January 6, 2014 | Review Permanlink

2 stars Okay, to be fair this is hardly the same band that gave us such gems as DAYS OF FUTURE PAST, and TO OUR CHILDRENS CHILDREN". This is pure 60's British pop. It is not bad pop, however, but it is pop. I think only 3 of the people on this album are also on the later Moody works. "Go Now" was, of ... (read more)

Report this review (#928072) | Posted by mohaveman | Sunday, March 10, 2013 | Review Permanlink

3 stars The Magnificent Moodies ? 1966 (3.5/5) 11 ? Best Song: Something You Got? No it's Can't Nobody Love You So many folks have taken a strong whiff of debut albums and sent them to the shredder. Either they're musical curios or 'paving the way for the future' or 'showing the band at their infancy'. ... (read more)

Report this review (#440448) | Posted by Alitare | Friday, April 29, 2011 | Review Permanlink

3 stars This was the first album for the band whose name comes from their favourite beer. At this time Denny Laine, later of Wings fame, was the lead man. The direction here is very blues and sixties pop based. There is a bit of Motown feeling in some of the songs. The big hit here is "Go Now". I ... (read more)

Report this review (#322046) | Posted by Brendan | Tuesday, November 16, 2010 | Review Permanlink

4 stars The roots of a myth: The Moody Blues. Another difficult CD for a rational review for me. I don't understand totally the Prog and this CD please me too. So, how to do? If i listen to my heath clearly... 5 stars. But for PA and Prog isn't so... Well for me The Magnificient Moodies is one of my fav ... (read more)

Report this review (#156225) | Posted by Sole | Saturday, December 22, 2007 | Review Permanlink

2 stars All (but one) of the single, EP and LP tracks of the band's original lineup are on this 25 track release. Contains that lineup's one big 1965 hit, "Go Now". This material is British Invasion Pop and R&B covers, bearing no real resemblance to the band that scored with "Nights in White Satin" an ... (read more)

Report this review (#42257) | Posted by trfesok | Tuesday, August 9, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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