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Uriah Heep

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Uriah Heep Salisbury album cover
4.19 | 911 ratings | 64 reviews | 40% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1971

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Bird of Prey (4:05)
2. The Park (5:38)
3. Time to Live (4:02)
4. Lady in Black (4:33)
5. High Priestess (3:39)
6. Salisbury (16:02)

Total Time 37:59

Bonus tracks on 1996 Essential remaster:
7. Simon the Bullet Freak (US album version) (3:27) #
8. High Priestess (single version) (3:13)

Bonus tracks on 2003 Castle remaster:
7. Simon the Bullet Freak (US album version) (3:27) #
8. Here Am I (alt. version) (7:50) *
9. Lady in Black (alt. version) (3:33) *
10. High Priestess (single edit) (3:38)
11. Salisbury (single edit) (4:21) *
12. The Park (alt. version) (5:18) *
13. Time to Live (alt. version) (4:14) *

* Previously unreleased
# Also on 1971 single B-side

Line-up / Musicians

- David Byron / lead vocals
- Mick Box / lead & acoustic guitar, vocals
- Ken Hensley / organ, piano, slide & acoustic guitars, harpshicord, vibes, lead vocals (4,5)
- Paul Newton / bass, vocals
- Keith Baker / drums

- John Fiddy / brass & woodwind arrangements (6)

Releases information

ArtWork: Bloomsbury Group (except North America releases)

LP Vertigo - 6360028 (1971, UK)
LP Bronze - ILPS 9152 (1971, Sweden)
LP Mercury ‎- SR 61319 (1971, US) Different cover art, omits "Bird of Prey" track and includes *"Simon the Bullet Freak" on altered running order from international releases: 5-2-3-4-*-6

CD Bronze ‎- 258 295 (1987, Germany)
CD Castle Communication - CLACD106 (1988, UK)
CD Essential ‎- ESMCD 317 (1996, UK) Remastered by Mike Brown w/ 2 bonus tracks
CD Castle Music ‎- CMRCD643 (2003, UK) Remastered by Mike Brown w/ 7 bonus tracks

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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Buy URIAH HEEP Salisbury Music

URIAH HEEP Salisbury ratings distribution

(911 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(40%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(44%)
Good, but non-essential (14%)
Collectors/fans only (2%)
Poor. Only for completionists (1%)

URIAH HEEP Salisbury reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars "All that is to be must surely be"

Uriah Heep's second album took its name from a town in England. Apparently the audience at a UH gig there helped out when the band found themselves in a tight spot and this, or more precisely the title track, was their reward. Salisbury Plain nearby is used for army exercises, hence the tank (about to symbolically destroy a flower) on the sleeve.

The album was a natural but defined progression from "Very 'eavy, very 'umble", with greater emphasis on melody and refinement. This was in part due to Ken Hensley having a much greater involvement in song-writing duties, something he would come to dominate on future albums. His poem "The park" which became the album's second track, has Byron singing falsetto. It's a song about as far away from the metal image of the band as you could find. Hensley takes lead vocal on "Lady in black", an acoustic guitar driven chant-based track, which became their biggest hit in some countries.

The stand out track is the 16 minute title epic, which is quite different from anything else the band has done. This difference is mainly down to the addition of orchestral backing (the band appear to have conflicting recollections as to whether they actually recorded with the orchestra or whether those parts were added later). The track has a far more complex and progressive structure than the vast majority of the band's work. Mick Box is truly inspired on the three improvised guitar solos he adds, and Byron's vocal timing is immaculate throughout. This really is one of Uriah Heep's best pieces on any album.

The risk with having such a dominant piece on an album is that the remaining tracks are overshadowed. The lasting appeal of "Salisbury" is that the tracks are strong throughout, with the title track providing a wonderful climax.

The deluxe remastered version of the CD has 6 bonus tracks, including "Simon the bullet freak" which replaced "Bird of prey" on the US release of the album.

Review by Sean Trane
3 stars 3,5 stars really. This second album , although much better , is still not perfect , is the one I prefer from them and mostly because of monstertrack Salisbury. Yet another line-up change with another drummer but the rest remains stable for a while . Bird Of Prey and Park are good hard-rock numbers and the highlight of side A. But really , we are all waiting for the title track , the unique example (to my knowledge anyway) of a suite from Heep, and probably the main reason ( if not the sole ! Roger Dean covers do not make prog albums on that feature only) for the inclusion of this band in this site. This Salisbury track shows how much the band was talented and gives me a sore feeling for they have wasted themselves (relatively speaking of course for the following 4 albums are good hard rock) in a direction different than what they achieved in this 16 + min suite - there are even horns on it. Lady in Black is also good.

I was relatively surprised that most of the first CD editions did not respect the album vinyl cover but this is now repaired. Apparantly the art work was different on each side of the Atlantic

Review by Chris S
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Salisbury rates IMHO as one of Uriah heeps finer albums. I don't think they ever managed a masterpiece but at times they released some excellent albums, this being but one of them.' Bird of Prey' , ' Lady In Black' and the 16 minute title track stand above the rest. I can only speak for the 1971 version and all the material on the remastered version kinda loses me! Hensley's keyboards on Salisbury are top drawer stuff.
Review by semismart
5 stars Uriah Heep released their debut album Very 'eavy...Very 'umble (called Uriah Heep in the U.S) in 1970. After its release, Keith Baker became the group's drummer; he performed on this album, Salisbury, the group's second album, before bowing out because of the band's extensive touring and was replaced by Ian Clarke. Later that year, Clarke was replaced by Lee Kerslake and Gary Thain ultimately replaced Newton and became the group's bassist. This lineup of Uriah Heep was its most stable and popular, releasing five albums between 1972 and 1975.

Salisbury redirects the band's style in the prog direction, at least the title song does. Containing only six songs dominated by the lengthy and elaborate epic-length title track composition. On Salisbury, Uriah Heep moderates the heavy, gloomy rock sound of their debut and works toward perfecting a new sound, a confluence of heavy metal power and progressive rock complexity.

At 16-minutes, I would be surprised if the title track, Salisbury, ever received any radio play. It features a 26-piece orchestra, which revealed the band's latent progressive tendencies. Highlights on the remaining songs side include "High Priestess," a soaring rocker that blends furious, power chord-fueled verses with spacey, keyboard-drenched instrumental breaks, and "The Park" is a light slow paced ballad sung falsetto by Byron and soaring harmonies by the band accompanied by a light blend of acoustic guitars and ethereal keyboards in a totally different style from the rest of the album. This song, which exudes a gentle, appealingly psychedelic feel, seems to recall a childish innocence as juxtaposition to the other more dreary themes. There is a nifty jazzy stop and go bridge in this song that reminds me in timbre, tempo and texture of Alice Cooper's "Steven".

In "Time to Live" we seem to return to the throbbing guitar/keyboard style of their debut album, while telling a story about a guy in prison for killing someone who hurt a little girl. Next, "Lady in Black", is one of the better known songs by Heep. A stylishly arranged and very catchy tune that escalates from a folksy styled acoustic tune into a pulsating rocker with ambient harmonies and crunching guitar riffs.

The fifth track, "Simon the Bullet Freak", is a bluesy tune that again reverts to the style of their debut with a throbbing beat led by the bass player and additional emphasis on piano and guitar. Byron sounds like he's singing through a megaphone and there don't seem to be any of their trademark background vocals.

The climax, "Salisbury" is truly a climax. I don't know how anybody could not appreciate this song since "Salisbury" is one of my all time favorite long songs, yet I have read some reviews that don't. As previously mentioned this 16:02 minute song utilizes a twenty-six piece orchestra which gives the song a huge sound and allows Heep to spread their progressive wings. This is a remarkable band playing a remarkable song in which they are totally in their element. "Salisbury" is bombastic, it's subtle, it's fast, it's quiet. It has horns and violins and organs and choirs and Byron has never sung better and oh those guitars of Mick Box. "Salisbury" is phenomenal, it is a classic.

Mick Box - guitar Keith Baker - drums Paul Newton - bass guitar Ken Hensley - keyboards David Byron - lead vocals

Song/Track List 1 High Priestess Hensley 3:41 **** 2 The Park Hensley 5:42 ***** 3 Time to Live Box, Byron, Hensley 4:01 ****1/2 4 Lady in Black Hensley 4:44 ***** 5 Simon the Bullet Freak, 3:43 ****1/2 6 Salisbury Box, Byron, Hensley 16:12 *****

You may have and like any of the twenty or so albums Uriah Heep has made and they have made some good ones but if you haven't heard "Salisbury" you haven't heard Uriah Heep.

I, being of the older persuasion, have seven or eight of Heep's albums on vinyl and I'm slowly replacing them with CDs. The first CD I went after was this one because if you don't have Salisbury you are missing an integral part of this rock/metal fixture.

This album is Heep's most progressive effort, especially the title tract which is almost the equal of the other five songs in length.

Review by Muzikman
4 stars Every group has a long lost classic album or a sleeper amongst their catalog of offerings. Uriah Heep's is Salisbury. This album was the group's second effort released in 1971. This version is the remastered release of 1996. The original British cover art of a tank bursting through a cloud of orange smoke is included; the British edition was replaced by the U.S. cover showing a shocking image of man tearing out of his own skin. Ken Hensley provides commentary once again, but the notes were much too small to read.

I have always had the opinion that Demons And Wizards was their tour de force album; I am having second thoughts after listening to this CD a few times. My first impression was that it was very good, upon a second and more introspective listen I was positively blown away by the diversity and content of this recording. "Bird of Prey" starts things off rocking in true Heep fashion, and then things begin to change quickly keeping your ears on alert at every turn. And that aspect is what kept me so interested every moment. The magnum opus prog-rock-jazz-fusion title track is over 16 minutes long taking up a majority of the second side (the original vinyl LP track listing is provided). The tides of musical ambiance are in constant state of flux, one moment there is a rocking guitar, and then Mick Box is off on a jazz fusion journey. Along with David Bryon's standout lead vocals, Hensley, Box, and Paul Newton (bass) provide harmonies that are incredibly appropriate during each instance of change during the songs. A big surprise is the ambient and ethereal "The Park," composed by the keyboard player Ken Hensley. The sound of brass is a new element; you will hear it interwoven throughout this album, giving the overall sound a jazz backdrop with a rock core pushing it along. It's an interesting and thought provoking blend showing how the band had developed exceedingly well after their first release. They wouldn't veer off into unknown territory too much more after this album was completed.

This is without question a prog-rock masterwork that was heavily underrated and under- appreciated by the critics. I read a review on the AMG site and I was appalled at the terrible review that this got ... two lousy stars. I guess you have to be a hardcore and sophisticated prog-rock listener to appreciate a gem like this when you hear it.

Review by loserboy
4 stars "Salisbury" was URIAH HEEP's (Mk 1) second release and clearly redirected the band's style in a progressive rock direction. Without a question David Byron had one of the best rock voices and on this album sounds stunning. "Salisbury" covers a wide range of musical themes... from the quaint to the psychedelic... from the metal to the symphonic classic progressive rock 70's vibe. Although the whole album is a standout for me, I suppose the centrepiece is the 17 minute epic title track which utilized to its full richness with a 26-piece orchestra and intermixed with 'the Heep's' hard rock tendencies. I love Mick Box's guitar riffs and how they are juxtaposed over Hensley's grinding organ chunks creating a kind of dark and dirty 70's underground rock vibe while Bryon's voice hits heavenly heights. URIAH HEEP had some wonderful vinyl moments but none better than on "Salisbury" and is an essential 70's gem.
Review by Eetu Pellonpaa
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars I think that this album is a true masterpiece! The title epic with the brass arrangements is haunting and wonderful, and there are also other good tracks on the album. The opener "Bird of Prey" is a good heavy rock song, and the following "The Park" is very fragile and beautiful jazzy ballad. Their hit song "Lady in Black" has good lyrics, and the sound wall of many acoustic guitars is pleasant. "High Priestess" and "Time to Live" are also nice rockers. I have listened some re-mastered CD with few bonus tracks, and there was a nice heavier song called "Simon The Bullet Freak" on it. It was really OK, but it had some parts which sounded like quite direct BEATLES quotations, and maybe it was omitted because of this originally?

I would recommend this album to all fans of artistic 70's rock and prog collectors. There are also some light jazz influences in some of the songs ("The Park", "Salisbury"), so those who are interested in easy jazz fusion might also want to check this out.

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Somewhere in your eyes / That very special glow / Something drawing me / To where I do not know / I never really thought / That I would lose myself / Now I'm going faster / Than anybody else . - Uriah Heep "Salisbury"

This album is I think "the" reason why Uriah Heep is reviewed here in this website. Through this album the band worked toward composing an album that blends strong elements of heavy metal drive with the complexity of prog rock. When this album was released it was kind like scaling down their debut "Very Eavy Very Umble .." because in terms of song structure and arrangements the band had demonstrated a much mature music compared to debut. This what I would say as progression because the music moved forward into a stronger direction in what later be called as progressive rock. Highlights on the album include "Bird of Prey" which has a powerful chord-fueled verses with keyboard-drenched interlude part. A folk-based acoustic song "Lady In Black" that brings us into a throbbing rocker with stunning and crunching guitar riffs. The album also features a touchy ballad-oriented song "The Park" that sparks the powerful voice of David Byron combined with etheral keyboard and acoustic guitar. This was really the track that color the days of my childhood and we used to sing along the melody, emulating Byron's lyrical verses. The harmonies produced from Byron's unique vocal and Hensley keyboard is truly awesome.

The title track "Salisbury" was my first introduction to this album and finally I bought the Monalisa cassette format right after the ilegal rock radio station called Blue Jean Racing in Bandung frequently aired this song. This long duration song has become my all time Heep favorite track. This 16-minute plus track occupies the largest space in this album. This prog epic starts off with a relative long exploration of brass and woodwinds work that would later characterize the main body of the whole epic. The music begins in relatively quite and slow passage and as the falsetto voice of Byron enters the scene the music moves into a crescendo with strong emphasize on brass section. The keyboard solo during instrumental break has an excellent combination of jazz and rock style during long instrumental break. The overall flow of this track contains segments with high and low amplification to accentuate the song's message. Segments where Byron enters the music at beginning of bar have a very nice and well positioned entry point. As a result it produces terrific experience for my listening pleasure. When I finally purchased the remastered CD version sometime in 2000 I have had a habit of repeating this track at least for the second time; including this time when I put some words about this track. It's truly a masterpiece song - for my personal taste. Great harmonies, great orchestral arrangements, great insertion of keyboard and rocking guitar solo that's Mick Box's unique and powerful compositions (structure and arrangement).

Other tracks featured in this album: "Time To Live" and "High Priestess" are another Heep's style excellent rock music. I have upgraded this album to the Sanctuary's 2003 and 2004 reissues of Salisbury with newly remastered, featured expanded artwork and slipcase packaging, and included alternate versions, B-sides, and BBC sessions. The reason is because I like Uriah Heep - be it a prog or non-prog music; it does not really matter to me because music is emotion. These gentlemen have stirred my emotion and this album is recommended!

Progressively yours,


Review by philippe
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars I'm really not into the heavy rock side of progressive music but I must admit that « Salisbury » is a remarkable album with very bright, touching moments. I consider Uriah Heep (next to Black Widow) as far ahead of British hard rock bands of the 70's. This album makes a rough combination between interludes of progressive wandering (epic keyboards arrangements) and comfortable, conventional heavy rock based passages. "Time to live" is an evident, catching heavy rock tune with an effective, inflexible guitar rhythm section accompanied by the powerful, emotional and screaming David Byron's vocals. "Lady wore black" is one of my all time favourite Uriah Heep composition, really rock with a folk touch and impressive vocals parts. Everything is accomplished with a tremendous energy and a great sense of melody. "The Park" is a ravishing ballad with outstanding, very emotional, sad vocals. A tune that can really give you shivers. This band beats all the 70's and 90's challengers in the progressive hard rock genre, stylistically, emotionally and technically. I highly recommend a listen on this convincing album.
Review by micky
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars This is an interesting album. This is the 4th of what I call my fabulous 5 prog albums. Albums of my parents that exposed me to prog as a child. Unlike the previous 3 I've reviewed. The Yes Album, The Lord of the Rings, and ELO 2. This album has not remained with me through 30 odd years of musical changes. I got this album again a couple of years ago when I returned to prog from an extended musical journey into the American Blues scene. Amazing how something you heard 30 years ago can come back to you just like that. Plus an album cover like that (some of you know what I'm talking about) was never is to be forgotten, it freaked me out as a kid hahah.

As far as the album itself. What a beginning we had here. Bird of Prey while nothing all that great from a musical standpoint.. is quite something for the vocal display David Byron put on. Imagine having a vice grip attached to vital parts of body.. and having pressure applied at certain points when you are trying to sing haha. His vocal range is very impressive and is the most noteworthy thing about the lead track. With the second song we have one of the real gems in Uriah Heep's catalog, The Park. Where Bryon's vocals are impressive on Bird of Prey.. here they are just flat out outstanding and I dare say..quite moving. The vocals are set on top of a great Harmonium, and organ melody. Time to Live follows which a standard rock fare, not bad but not really a favorite. Next comes a song that helped put Uriah Heep on the map. Lady in Black. A great sing along song with a nice stomping beat... where the song really grabbed me was that mellotron enters during the 4th verse. By the time I heard it.. I was completely sucked in to a song that what it lacks in complexity it makes up in being just a flat out great song. The next song High Priestess is another great vocal performance by Byron with a catchy vocal melody. Love the wah guitar breaks.. possibly a warm up for Salisbury perhaps hahaha. The last song on here was a gutsy move for the group in only it's second album. Salisbury showed the group's experimental and progressive side on a 17 minutes long epic with a 22 piece orchestra section. Salisbury was done in two stages.. the group put the music down first and the Orchestra was added later to the track. Oh those poor classical musicians of the day.. mixing with those..rock musicians hahah. Mick Box on the recording of Salisbury...

"I remember when we were recording the brass section and my lengthy wah-wah guitar solo came in and I saw all these trained session musicians throw their headphones to the floor in horror, and even to this day you can hear the loud click of wah-wah plugged through the Marshall stack on volume 10 as the solos begin'"

Oh yes you can hear that click clear as day. Hearing that story brings a smile to my face every time I listen to I'm doing now. Salisbury works as well as you would expect from a young group feeling it's creative oats. Great solos from Box and Hensley. The orchestra is well arranged and both band and orchestra work well together in the context of Salisbury.

This album was a real pleasure to 'discover' again. 3.5 stars and will go with a 4.. a great addition to any prog collection, The Park and Lady in Black being the difference between a 3rd star and a 4th

Michael (aka micky)

Review by WaywardSon
5 stars First of all, I have to say this is a fantastic album! All the tracks on here show Heep were a band that were full of ideas, and this shows in the creative experimentation of their song writing. All the tracks are completely different and no two tracks are even remotely the same.

"Bird of Prey" opens the album, with David Byron´s immortal scream that comes swooping down like an eagle going in for the kill. The vocal harmonies on this album are incredible and remind me of later albums by Queen and The Sweet. Mick Box is the king of the wah wah pedal and delivers a fine solo.

On "The Park" things get softer with Byron singing in a sweet falsetto voice. Listening to this song you can actually picture yourself in a quiet park on a Sunday afternoon. There are quite a few progressive time changes in this song and at times it goes off in a slightly jazz direction, before coming back into the song again. Byron at his best!

"Time to live" is about someone leaving prison after twenty years behind bars. Basically he has to make up for lost time and experience what this life still has to offer. Again, Byron delivers an amazing emotonal performance, while Box delivers a well thought out solo that compliments the song perfectly.

"Lady in Black" probably needs no introduction, a hypnotic anti war song with just two chords! This song was a worldwide hit and just shows that a song with a strong melody and two chords can still be a clasic!

"High Priestess" is more of a feelgood song about friends (or together people) who are on the same wavelength.

"Salisbury" is the standout for me. The organ and orchestra begin together and the song has an organ solo by Hensley, an excellent guitar solo by Box, and throughout the song you can clearly hear the clarinets and flutes weaving through the music. Paul Newton´s bass guitar is also crystal clear throughout the song. The lyrics are about lost love and "longing" and work beautifully with the orchesta.

Spectacular song writing indeed!

Review by erik neuteboom
4 stars Thirty years ago I bought this album, this evening I played it since many years and it's incredible how this album still excites me so much ! Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that music that you listen to at the age between 13 and 16 gets a special meaning for you because it is related with the many emotional moments you are experienced to as an adolescent. Anyway, to me Salisbury sounds a a very good album with a pleasant variety and tasteful arrangements. On one hand it delivers the Uriah Heep trademark: progressive hardrock in Bird Of Prey (strong and dynamic opener), Time To Live (great floods of Hammond organ) and High Priestess (straight R&R with nice vocal harmonies and strings). These tracks feature powerful interplay between Box and Hensley along the distinctive, a bit high-pitched and theatrical vocals by David Byron. On the other hand Uriah Heep also makes mellow songs like The Park (twanging acoustic guitar, soft organ runs and warm vocals)and Lady In Black (moving ballad with a catchy beat, pleasant acoustic rhythm guitar and wonderful vocals). Here Uriah Heep let us hear their that they don't need decibels to impress! And then the absolute highlight, the final composition Salisbury, pure progressive rock that delivers an exciting dynamic sound with excellent interplay between the classical instruments and Hensley his omnipresent Hammond organ and biting wah-wah drenched soli by Mick Box. With any doubt the titletrack is a strong musical experiment that prooved Uriah Heep their huge potential.
Review by Chus
3 stars This band is not progressive... don't let this MASTERPIECE trick you!!.

Even when it hurts to say it: this is Uriah Heep, the progressive rock band for just one year. That year was 1971, and bands like Deep Purple had already established their hard rock sound... whereas Heep was still trying to find out what to sound like. Unfortunately they left this direction in favour of the more naive hard rock, and it hurts that they do works like this and never do it again in the same vein; on one hand, it's a positive remark, meaning that they probably were not too creative in the first place to be a progressive band; but on the other hand: who knows?, they would've probably competed withthe supergroups of the 70's, giving us more of the things we love so much. but.... *sigh*

The album is a collection of goodies and averages. Bird Of Prey follows the more or less same "'eavy" approach, as it is a reworking of "Lucy's Blues" (if I can recall correctly). But then.. wait.. a falsetto!!... and jazzy breaks!!!!... WOW!... beautiful. The Park is a beautiful jazzy ballad that beats the hell out of the dull "Come Awat Melinda". Then, "Time To Live" is another hard nutter rocker with amazing guitar licks by Box (the same riff that would be applied to his solo on Salisbury), but overall just a simple teen- angst kind of song. "Lady In Black" is a simple 2-chord piece (A and G) and "High Priestess" is YET another hard rock song, with faster beat.

Now comes the delight: their one and only "brass-rock symphony": "Salisbury" features a large brass orchestra with some woodwinds thrown in the mix, and you wouldn't believe this is UH until you listen to the first notes of the main melody sung by Byron. Byron may bleat sometimes but I just love how that sheep sounds... very sentimental. Then we're in for the amazing bridge: verses sung by Byron leads to Mick Box playing his most amazing solo yet, and then were in for the coda and an amazing finale. Just glitters with brilliance!.. and even though they might had been listening to Pink Floyd at the time, this beats the heck out of "Atom Heart Mother"; I mean, you don't get 6 extra minutes of keyboard pranks to make exactly 21 minutes... so that's probably why this one is 5 minutes shorter and much, much better!.

A shame that they didn't go on with this formula. But I think they just couldn't do better than this one. 3.5 stars

Review by ZowieZiggy
3 stars The opener "Bird Of Prey" is another Heep classic. High voice, strong bass and keys in the background : a very dynamic and good hard rock number. Vocal effects are superb (the echo is really a fantastic idea). It was already featured on the US release of their first album. It is my favourite song of this album.

"The Park" starts with acousitc guitar and very high Byron vocals (Mercury could have write this one). Although the song is promising in its initial part, we get some jazzy improv in the finale which kinda ruin the ensemble. Sounds as if the Heep is trying to simulate King Crimson. Not a great idea.

"Time To Live" on the contrary is a great Heep song : pure and solid hard rock again : Hensley key's work is just fabulous. He is probably one of the most underrated rock keyboard players. IMO, he belongs to the top ten. Definitely. His input to the Heep (he is the driving force, actually) will be inmense from this album onwards. He IS the Heep.

"Lady in Black" is a folk/rock ballad which could have been avoided. I must say that this album sounds significantly different than their excellent debut one. I am quite confused with it, but I start to understand why it is so praised on this site.

"High Priestess" is a good rock'n'roll tune and fits perfectly well on this album. Vocal effects are similar to the ones from "Bird Of Prey".

Then the closing number and title track. The longest Heep studio track. Violins, brass and woodwind adds a symphonic sound to this piece. If you have read some other of my reviews (Yes, Tull, Purple) you already know that the use of an orchestra in combination with rock music is not really my cup of tea. This track, although interesting, will not change my opinion.

The intro (almost ELP-esque) is impressive. Byron enters the scene like in "July Morning" : two minutes of pure joy. Then, we get a long and pompous musical break in the style that Romans must have welcomed their warriors on the way home... After about five minutes of this torment, Byron comes back for a while to bring a bit of life in here. It leads to a great finale with a fantastic Fox guitar play (hi Ritchie).

I probably expected too much of this song than it is worth (IMO) due to the glorious reviews I read on this site. Maybe too much different from the traditional Heep output ? I do not know.

There are an incredible amount (seven) of bonus tracks on the Japanese remastered version (over thirty minutes), almost as much as the original album). Some unreleased songs : "Simon The Bullet Freak" which is a good rocking number with good piano and guitar work. Tempo is slow (but the original album is not really a wild one, so...).

"Here Am I" is a long (almost eight minutes) psychedelic and slow track for about four minutes. All of a sudden, it turns into a wild guitar solo which is really good. It is the most interesting of the bonuses and could have easily make the album. One of the best track available (together with the title track and "Bird Of Prey").

Some very good remixes of existing album tracks are also available. IMO, most of them (if not all) are superior to the original ones "Lady In Black" "Time To Live" and most of all "The Park" : the jazzy section here (much shorter) is more accessible and by far superior to the album version.

Some single edits : "High Priestess" sounds rockier and fresher (when I listen to it, I really believe that it is a rather brilliant remix which gives more life and a more modern angle to the original song).

One could call it a crime to cut down "Salisbury" to 4'21" (like those stupid versions for "Thick" or "APP" reduced to a mere three minutes) but I must say that, on the contrary, this one is not too bad. If some of you believe that the long title track is a bit "too much" it is rather interesting and summarizes the original not too badly.

Heep has produced one symphonic/progressive album with this effort. In my discography, the Heep is itemized in the hard-rock genre. It is as such that I prefer them.

I would not recommend this album if you want to have an overall idea of the band's production. On the contrary, if you would like to discover the progressive side of the Heep, there are no other album for you than "Salisbury". I would recommend you the remastered version, but pay attention : prices range from 15 to 40 (forty !) US $ depending on which internet supplier you will buy from.

Three stars.

Review by febus
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / In Memoriam

1971: the prog movement is burgeonning back then in England; new bands like YES, KING CRIMSON,ELP etc are making it big and show the rest of the Rock world that you could bring some refinement, complex musical structures, odd timechanges, weirdness and still sell a lot of records.

I guess at the time URIAH HEEP was between a rock and a hard place: which way to go? play it hard like on the first album, play it prog or mix it up like DEEP PURPLE with ''FIREBALL''? i guess the band decided to make everybody happy and go both ways. MICK BOX will still have room for hard rocking solos and KEN HENSLEY will explore his prog tendencies.

So we have here a strange album going for the most hard rocking tune like ''Bird of Prey'' with again a formidable operatic high- pitched performance from DAVID BYRON to one of the most pompous, over the top prog piece i ever heard , the title track''Salisbury''. But when i write pompous, over the top doesn't mean it's bad: no, on the contrary ,it's quite good, but i can understand, not everyone can be fond of this long 16mn piece. Anyway, pompous is part of the prog vocabulary and if we didn't like it, we wouldn't been glued to this site.

All the tracks are GOOD;yes, some of them are great like the wonderful ''the park''. Have you ever heard something else as exquisite than this song? and once again, those BYRON vocals!!!!!! He was definitely one of the best, upthere with guys like MERCURY. KEN HENSLEY do a lead vocal on the classic ''lady in black'', a song that will become a success in Germany,,,,a few years later, with its sing-a-long anthemic chorus.

''Salibury'' the title track, this is something else. This is the kind of tracks that detractors and haters of prog will put at your face (better,your ears ,) to show you how self indulgent and bombastic prog can be.They might be right, but you know what, that what makes prog so interesting . Oh yes, that's pompous, and you have the dramatic intro, and you have the orchestra, and you don't want to forget the brass section,and of course the choir, everything to make a punk rocker commit suicide. But you have so many wonderful moments in there, especially the many tasty guitar solos from MICK BOX.A great piece of music.

URIAH HEEP will never be so prog in the future . A curious album going in different directions, but that's what makes its charm and character. Also, like on the first album, it has a great sound and a very original great cover.


Review by b_olariu
4 stars One of the best Uriah Heep album, no doubt

I think this album is the proggiest of Heep albums and still is something in between hard rock and prog. They never sound to prog like Genesis (for ex), but they never sound to hard like Deep Purple, they try to do a mixt between these to genre and the result is Salisbury. Better than the first but not as good as the next one and the first album from 1972, but still a great one because of the monster track Salisbury, of course the rest is damn good. Here they gather all the ideas they have in a unique sound and manner of playing. Other track that i enjoy very much is High priestess. A 4 star album, and one of the best from the '70.

Review by Hercules
4 stars Uriah Heep's second album is undoubtedly their most progressive and a huge step forward from their debut. The first side starts with an excellent rocker with trademark Byron vocals (how Dream Theater could have done with him!). The Park is more subtle and jazzy, with some unusually understated guitar but Time to Live is fine but not really up to the standard of the rest. Lady in Black is their best song - driven by massed acoustic guitars, with great vocals and a memorable set of lyrics. High Priestess is back to good solid hard rock before the main event (and is much better than Simon the Bullet Freak which was its replacement on the version of the album I had in Canada).

Salisbury is the only really extended piece Heep did, accompanied by an orchestral wind/brass section. There are excellent solos by Hensley and Box, driving rhythms (despite not yet having acquired the classic Kerslake/Thain rhythm section, Baker and Newton do a good job) and nice changes of pace and mood. Byrons vocals are exceptional. A genuinely interesting piece of prog.

Overall, this is a very, very good album; probably Heep's best by a small margin, though the three that followed all come close. The original cover artwork is also very poignant, given what happens on Salisbury Plain.

A seemingly underrated band on this site, Heep deserve more attention than they get. This album is a great example of why.

Review by Tarcisio Moura
4 stars A quite big (I mean BIG) step forward for the band, and it´s my favorite of the three LPs the band recorded before they became an international smash with Demons And Wizzards. the music here is much more focused, melodic and sophisticated than on the debut. Production also helped a lot, but the main reason might be Hensley´s songwriting ability: he writes or co-writes all the tracks on this album. Davi Byron´s voice reached a new height (see The Park) and Mick Box guitar solos also developed, showing some interesting subtleties on many parts. Backing vocals are good and original as ever.

The tracklist is far superior to the first album and Time to Live is the only song I can think that would fit that record. but the best one is their 16 minute epic title track. This big suite is probably one of Uriah Heep´s most daring and bombastic works of their entire career. It is only a pity that they never tried to work longer orchestraded pieces again. Nevertheless it stands even today as their most interesting and progressive efford ever.

A very promising record that showed the band could (and would) go very far. Salisbury is best known for the LP that had the original version of Lady In Black, but it is much more than that. Glad to see that there are no fillers of any kind. 3,5 stars that I´m glad to round up for 4.

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
4 stars While Ken Hensley played on Uriah Heep's debut album, he didn't write any of the material for that album. On this one, on the other hand, Hensley wrote, or co-wrote, all songs but one. Maybe this is part of the reason for the band making a gigantic leap forward with this, their second album; Salisbury. However, it cannot be the whole explanation, since the opening number Bird of Pray was written by Box and Byron and it is one of the best songs here, miles ahead of Gypsy from the previous album.

If you thought that Rob Halford of Judas Priest was the originator of a certain style of singing, then listen to Bird Of Pray and you will be amazed, bearing in mind that this was done in 1971, several years before Halford ever put his voice to any album. The harmony vocals on this track are also a precursor to what Queen would do a couple of years later. Great stuff and quite groundbreaking at the time.

The Park is a jazzy piece, quite similar to some songs on Yes first two albums. Lady In Black is a classic, a folky sing-a-long song.

The title track, incorporating full orchestra, is clearly inspired by Deep Purple's Concerto for Group and Orchestra, but this is much better! Still, it is the least good song on this album, and it lacks a really memorable melody. It also feels a bit out of place among the other songs and it tends to become a bit tedious towards the end.

Even if Salisbury is very much better than the debut, it is still a little bit shaky. The vocals are not always on track and the sound quality isn't perfect. Still, Salisbury is one Uriah Heep's very best albums and an excellent addition to your prog collection.

Review by TGM: Orb
4 stars Review 63, Salisbury, Uriah Heep, 1971


It is, on occasion, startling how much a group can develop in the space of an album. The substantial space in both style and quality between From Genesis To Revelation and Trespass, or The Yes Album and Fragile ('rawr') illustrate this. So does Uriah Heep's second offering, the superb Salisbury. Aside from really sorting out the harmonies and adding a modicum of tasteful delicacy that Very 'Eavy Very 'Umble generally lacked, the band have both really excelled in producing strong, soft songs and in spreading their wings in a surprising number of directions rather than redredging and developing the more successful material of the predecessor.

Aside from the most obvious artistic leaning, which is a sixteen minute-long suite that includes both brass and woodwind session musicians, the folk tastes of Lady In Black and bizarre vocal choices suggest a band that is genuinely making an effort to move beyond their heavy blues background, and hitting the mark brilliantly. The album isn't quite perfect, with a couple of less fascinating moments, but it is damned good, and should be a part of every discerning progger's collection.

The opener Bird Of Prey shows off the features of the new and improved Uriah Heep: a range of heavy, but non-dominating riffs, superb and eclectic vocals and harmonies, and a set of great lyrics to go with them. The piece opens quite neatly with a guitar-based rhythm complimented with Ken Hensley's classy organ flourishes, while David Byron demonstrates his high, rounded, and, on occasion, screechy vocals and ability to fit into and leap off harmonies. The rhythm section provides a solid background for this, changing as the leads do. Of especial greatness, however, is the kicking guitar/organ riff that breaks out towards the end, occasionally pausing for a harmonised 'ah' at a whim. A good opener, and a formidable statement of intent.

The following The Park is much softer as a song, with high and almost female vocal from Byron with complimentary harmonies. Hensley takes up his turn on vibes as well as a softer organ part, while Mick Box contributes absolutely lush acoustic melodies and Paul Newton's edgeless bass throbs an echo of the vocals. The lyrical content is superb and in a rather folky anti-war style without any of the unfortunate myopic and self-righteous ring that I get from some folk sources. Again, quirk sets in, with a bizarre organ-bass duet accompanied by quiet background noises and some decent percussion ideas. A final verse rounds off the piece nicely. Again, superb, but in a very different style.

The somewhat heavier Time To Live is perhaps my favourite piece of the album, and David Byron alone basically explains that. After a rather wallowing, though punchy opening, the piece breaks out into full flow with wah-wah and slide guitar of the highest level, a classy riff, gorgeous organ swells and a simply incredible rounded vaguely bluesy vocal with forceful, soft and almost sultry alternations, as well as some good plain Tina-Turner-like screeching. The lyrical content, though simple, is nonetheless superbly phrased, and the two insane wah-wah solos from Mick Box are unforgettable.

Lady In Black, the album's hit (and, if I remember correctly, the biggest commercial success of Uriah Heep) is almost unexpected. Aside from the neatly edgy folk lyrics and enormo-harmony-ificated vocals, the song features a good acoustic riff substantiated later on with heavier and yet completely unintrusive guitars and subtle piano additions, as well as a weird sliding bass thing. Mellotron, if I'm not totally mistaken, features subtly at one point. An odd piece, as it is both stripped down and built up at different points with no stress, and, interesting though it is, I don't find it all that stunning in an emotional way.

High Priestess, after this, is a slightly more conventional effort, although quite a good hard rock song with bursting guitars and a strong vocal, if rather unconvincing lyrical content. The mass harmonies are introduced to good effect, and a kicking rhythm section is never left behind too much. Unfortunately, it does wear a little thin by the end, and seems to be being simply run into the ground. There's nothing really blatantly wrong with it, it's just not convincing to my ears.

Salisbury, however, is a completely different story altogether. Right from the opening, aside from the lush use of oboes and various brass instruments which I can't separate well enough to justify it, Ken Hensley's organ takes on a monstrous power of its own, and the guest orchestra accomplishes its role perfectly, somehow sliding fittingly into what is essentially a big rock song, complete with a neat start-and-stop drum style and some glowing guitar and bass work. David Byron's vocal entrance is incredibly moving, soft and potent, though on a couple of very brief occasions it wanders a little too far into the land of cheese.

The kicking rock riffs and orchestral integration are pretty unique and integral to the song, which somehow uses both the classical melodies from the orchestra and standard organ or guitar soloing without one ever pushing out the other. The level of integration is simply stunning, and Paul Newton's directional bass provides another charming texture. Some incredibly funky (I mean that in the nicest possible sense of the word) riffs from Hensley add extra flavour, as do the more dejected vocals of Byron's developing story ('well we tried/Our love inside/just crumpled up and died') and breathtaking harmonies. The sheer emotive power of his exhorting 'alone again! How could you leave me alone again? I don't wanna be alone again!' needs to be heard, and I have no doubt that even those more exclusively heading into the 'symphonic' realm, who might be inclined to avoid bands so linked to hard rock, should not miss the overall majesty, effect and quality of Salisbury. Mick Box's explosive guitar solo is also vital listening. An unmissable piece, no matter how often I say that.

Now, bonus material in a line-per-song summary. Simon The Bullet Freak: Great, awesome bass and piano riff, great vocals, a good developed blues piece. Might not have heard the original. Here Am I: urk, a little repetitive and ineffectual, with an irritating harmony. Some great moments, though. The rest is essentially slightly altered versions and single cuts from the album, and though all sound perfectly decent, there aren't really any I'd instantly snatch over the original. Ending with Time to Live, though, is just a superb idea.

So, overall, this falls barely short of the masterpiece mark, but on occasion it does lack and the unimpressive High Priestess is a small drag on the album. Certainly essential listening, though, and the album's biggest highs (ending of The Park, Time To Live, Salisbury) are amazing. Recommended to all, and the devotion it receives is entirely deserved.

Rating: Four Stars Favourite Track: Time To Live or Salisbury. It changes depending on the exact moment of each that I'm listening to.

Review by poslednijat_colobar
5 stars Another masterpiece in my Uriah Heep collection.I can say that this is the first album from long series of great albums for Uriah Heep.Some months ago,I didn't believe this album is as good as some of the later albums,but now I think it is one of the best albums from Uriah Heep.There's not a weak song here.Bird of Prey is so appropriate for opening song and then The Park is so heart-breaking ballad with gentle jazz line.The album contains one of the biggest hit singles for Uriah Heep Lady in Black,which will be immortalize as frequent radio sample forever.Here is the greatest one - the epic one - Salisbury,a perfect composition with opera-influenced structure - just incredible - three guitar solos by Box,theatrical voice by Byron,great symphonic arrangement incorporated in this mini rock opera.Perfect!
Review by Epignosis
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Uriah Heep's second album has its moments, but overall is rather bland. The long title track is an outstanding song however, with a great structure, an orchestra, and excellent instrumental sections. Otherwise most of what is here is little more than conventional rock music.

"Bird of Prey" The tranquil guitar that begins the album is no indication of the hard rock coming up. The vocal melody proves dissatisfying, and sounds like an inexperienced preteen came up with it. The vocal exclamations during the guitar solo are haunting, but not nearly as irritating as they have been on other albums.

"The Park" Quiet percussion and organ introduce an agreeable melody before the pleasing acoustic guitars enter. The lead singer engages in an off-putting falsetto performance, but the counterpoint vocal work somewhat compensates. During the second half, jazzy runs of guitar and organ, punctuated by the chirping of birds, take over just before a revisiting of the song proper.

"Time to Live" Returning to hard, heavily accented rock, Mick Box demonstrates some impressive lead guitar soloing. The vocalizations are sometimes painful to listen to.

"Lady in Black" Close in style to Neil Young, there is nothing particularly progressive about this narrative, acoustic-driven song, but it's definitely not one to pass by.

"High Priestess" Laced with piano, but dominated by guitar, this is a moderate rocker with a simple chord progression and decent vocals.

"Salisbury" The epic of the album lives up to that description. It has a chilling orchestra opening before the exceedingly loud organ calls the brass section back into the fore. There's a crunchy organ solo over bass playing that just can't stand still as the music grows quieter, the orchestra piping in now and again, until the sound grows full again. Even though this is an organ and orchestra-dominated song, Box's guitar soloing is furiously good- probably his most inspired moment on this album.

Review by Marty McFly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Oh, you can find yourself to be listening this title track a lot if you don't watch your back. It's the one of few tracks which took me to prog music. By that time I didn't knew it, but now I know some facts, so I can say that Salisbury stands as their best album. For me of course. If they just somehow put there Magician's Birthday, Return to Paradise and July Morning, this would be the best album, definitely. But I know, fairy tales vanished long time ago.

Epic feeling from eponymous track makes other ones to act like fillers, which isn't true. They're just in a shade, so it's unfair if someone do it like that. Try some day listen only to others and you will see. Where "Easy Living" gave me just rock feeling (not much prog, FOR ME here, don't blame me please, at least not you Easy Livin' admin), High Priestes (for example) is good example. Isn't it ?

With this album, my ears has entered new era, prog music and this is all thanks to my father. Who gave me this CD. I suspect him that it was some kind of bait, part of a bigger plan (well, I'm suspicious in general), but it worked. And works, four years has passed, I'm mature, young man who still listens this music. Orchestral parts are very good in Salisbury and keyboards do their job. I know that UH changed singers a lot, but this one stands before them all.

"As time passed, and all too fast..."

Review by Mellotron Storm
3 stars Paul Newton the bass player says that he felt the album cover with the tank on it was very misleading, that this wasn't a particularly heavy album. I agree. He also mentions that the full orchestra on the title track was added to the song at a later date.This was URIAH HEEP's second album, and as i've said before, nothing they did before or after will top "Demons And Wizards" for me.

"Bird Of Prey" sounds so good when it opens but then the vocals come in and dampen my enthusiasm. Yikes ! The song fades out. "The Park" opens with acoustic guitar and organ as reserved vocals join in. A strange instrumental interlude takes over before 4 minutes. "Time To Live" has a nice heavy intro. I like the guitar 2 1/2 minutes in and the prominant organ too.

"Lady In Black" is apparently one of their most popular songs. I can't remember ever hearing it before but it is pretty good. "High Priestess" has a psychedelic flavour to the intro, then it kicks in. Nice. Good track. "Salisbury" has orchestral sounds throughout. In all honesty i'm not a fan of this one at all. The way the horns blast is a style I just don't like. I do like the guitar 11 1/2 minutes in and later though.

Way too many misses to even warrant 3 stars. Just not a fan of this one.

Review by Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Salisbury is Uriah Heep right at the peak of their game. I always liked them most when they had that gentle melancholy in their music; something which gradually faded out after this album.

All songs collected here are exceptional, very different from one another but nevertheless building up to a coherent album. The performances are simply stellar: very tight, inspired and passionate.

Bird of Prey kicks the album into action. Excellent guitar riffing and oh my god those voices. I guess you have to like them but in the high range of hard rock vocals not much compares to David Byron. By contrast to the heavy beginning, most of the album is rather soft. The Park and Lady In Black for example are gentle melancholic tunes and very good ones at that.

The song that will get you on board for this album or not would be the title track. With its extended length and orchestral brass sections it sure is an acquired taste. A taste that took me some time to acquire as well I must admit. But I always liked the melodies and vocals on this song so I persisted and came to like it in the end.

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars "Salisbury" is the 2nd full-length studio album by UK semi-progressive hard rock act Uriah Heep. The album was released through Mercury/Vertigo in January/february 1971 (US/UK release dates respectively) While being a relatively enjoyable release, the debut album "Very 'eavy...Very 'umble (1970)" didn´t exactly do much for me and unfortunately that´s the only Uriah Heep I listened to for many years. "Salisbury" is a totally different creature and I´m glad that I got the opportunity (and took it) to take a listen to this album. The UK and the US releases have different tracklists as "Bird of Prey", the opening track from the UK release, was replaced by "Simon The Bullet Freak" on the US version. I recommend getting either the 1996 remastered CD version or the 2003 expanded deluxe CD version where both songs are included.

The basic organ and guitar driven bluesy hard rock from the debut is still present on "Salisbury", but the sound on "Salisbury" is much more progressive and adds many new elements to Uriah Heep´s style. The two hard rocking tracks "Time To Live" and "High Priestess" are probably the tracks that remind me the most of the debut but the excellent "Bird of Prey", the progressive "The Park", the folky "Lady In Black" and the epic 16:02 minute long title track, which features a 24-piece orchestra, are all very different from the songs on the debut. The band are well playing and I have to give a special mention to lead vocalist David Byron who is quite fantastic in my book. He has a very varied vocal style and can go from powerful hard rocking vocals to softer styled vocals to his trademark high pitched vocals. I mentioned this in my review of the debut album but I´ll mention it again here. Those high pitched vocals must have been one of the main influences on artists like Rob Halford (Judas Priest) and King Diamond (King Diamond, Mercyful Fate).

The sound production is powerful and much better sounding than the sound on the debut.

"Salisbury" has ignited my interest in Uriah Heep like the debut never accomplished and I think it´s an excellent progressive hard rock album. A 4 star (80%) rating is fully deserved.

Review by Rune2000
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars My dad owns the US LP-version of Salisbury which he is very proud of and it was my introduction to Uriah Heep and their music!

The album kicks off with High Priestess which in my opinion, after hearing the UK-version, is actually a much better album opener than Bird Of Prey. The rest of the material is basically the same as on the original version except for Simon The Bullet Freak which was originally an album b-side. Ultimately these few changes between the two releases don't take away from the album's real masterpieces.

The highlights here are the two ballads The Park and Lady In Black with some great vocal harmony sections and overall melodic hooks. The second half of the album consists of the lengthy Salisbury-suite which can be considered Uriah Heep's stab at the popular progressive music genre of the time and, in my opinion, they managed it quite well!

Too bad that Uriah Heep didn't follow up their progressive tendencies with their later releases because there was definitely some potential featured on this album!

***** star songs: The Park (5:38) Lady In Black (4:33)

**** star songs: High Priestess (3:43) Salisbury (16:02)

*** star songs: Time To Live (4:02) Simon The Bullet Freak (3:27)

Review by seventhsojourn
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Released in 1971, Uriah Heep's second recording Salisbury could claim to be the band's most progressive album. Previously known for a blues inflected brand of heavy rock, Salisbury sees the band broadening its musical horizon by incorporating greater jazz and classical influences. This is most evident in the epic title track.

Bird Of Prey gets the album off to a vigorous start with Hammond organ, guitar and characteristic heavenly vocal harmonies, until the tempo shifts up a gear with sustained Mellotron and piercing guitar. This pattern repeats before a different closing section fades unexpectedly. The song could possibly have been developed further, but is a fine start to the album nonetheless. Ken Hensley reveals his skill as a song writer with The Park, a reflective ballad that demonstrates the refinement of the band's sound in contrast to Very 'Eavy. Hensley plays organ, vibes and harpsichord during the intro of this acoustic ballad, which also features a superb David Byron falsetto. A short jazzy instrumental section further enlivens the song with the band playing by fits and starts, before returning to the main song. Time To Live is a fairly typical Heep mid-tempo rocker with a bludgeoning riff featuring Hammond and corkscrew wah wah guitar. Next up is the poetic Lady In Black, another acoustic-led song featuring Ken Hensley on lead vocals. This track also includes some nice echoing snare drum and waves of Mellotron strings.

High Priestess begins in laid-back manner with slide guitar and harmonics before a wah wah broadside gets the main song going. This is another tasty rocker, with more of those heavenly harmonies. Finally we arrive at the epic title track. It's an ambitious piece featuring brass and woodwind, and tops the 16-minute mark. Suffice to say it features many different changes in mood, dynamics and tempo, with Box and Hensley soloing over superb orchestration. The song ends in dramatic style with Byron's final scream above the group and wind band accelerating en masse to a conclusion. Great stuff!

Salisbury is a fine album with no duff tracks and one or two great ones. For me it lies squarely between good and excellent, but my overall rating is a reluctant 3 stars. Tomorrow I'll wish I'd given it 4!

Review by octopus-4
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR RIO/Avant/Zeuhl,Neo & Post/Math Teams
4 stars This is one of the few albums which have set a standard for what will later become known as heavy metal. David Byron's high pitched vocals, distorted loud guitars, obsessive drumming and organ, something that they share with Deep Purple.

Few seconds of Bird of Prey are enough to understand that this is more than just a rock album. Let your mind fall hypnotized by "The Park", enjoy the orchestra on the epic title track or the heavy rock of Time To Live, a song on which Byron places his highest notes. This is progressive rock.

I think it's normal comparing them with Deep Purple who were apparently making the same genre in that period, but the difference is more than you can think at a first glance. Uriah Heep are less self-indulgent than the skillful Purples. They can play an acoustic ballad like Lady In Black without doing anything special from a technical point of view, even if I love how the bass enters with 7 simple notes.

I've listened to this album a lot of times. I remember to have copied this and Very Heavy Very Humble on the same tape to bring them to my car an eternity ago. Tape readers had the "auto-reverse" function actually. This to say that without using my vinyl copies I didn't realize that Salisbury was 16 minutes long!! This song flows so continuously that I was unaware of its long duration. When a thing like this happens it means that the music is very good.

A special mention to High Priestess, that's a song a little underrated abut it has a special place in my mind. maybe the acoustic intro that sends me to the Caravan of Winter Wine, maybe the incredible choirs, the guitar that sounds so "Black Sabbath". There are a lot of things hidden in this album waiting only to be discovered.

About the rating, I have the strong temptation to recognize it the status of masterpiece, but I'm afraid that it's a bit too much. It's more than just an excellent addition, but not an absolute masterpiece.

And surely, not just hard rock. This is progressive music.

Review by Warthur
4 stars Progarchives got it right in categorising this one: "Heavy Prog" is the name of the game. Whilst the brutal guitar work characteristic of heavy metal is more or less absent on this album, Ken Hensley's organ skills and, on the title track, Mr Fiddy's brass and woodwind instruments play a crucial role in keeping the music loud and, where it needs to be, aggressive. Whilst not all of the songs on the album are top-notch - High Priestess, in particular, feels like lightweight filler, though the vocal harmonies are admittedly gorgeous - it deserves credit for managing to establish a heavy and metal-like atmosphere despite eschewing what would eventually be seen as typical metal instrumentation and compositional practices. Four stars.
Review by baz91
4 stars Difficult second album? Quite the contrary!

After the band's mediocre debut effort, Uriah Heep's second album took them in an entirely new direction. Rather than play it safe, the band decided to write a 16-minute epic. Fortunately for the band, this action didn't backfire, and 'Salisbury' is now regarded as one of Heep's best albums.

Of course, there's more to this album than just the epic title track. A brief description of the shorter tracks follows. The album starts with the heavy rocker Bird Of Prey, featuring brilliant vocals, including some comedic 'ooh's and 'aah's towards the end. The Park is more mellow and soft and is quite uncharacteristic of Heep. The jazzy organ and guitar instrumental makes this my second favourite song of the album. Whilst not being brilliant, Time To Live is a fun stand-alone song with good lyrics and some fantastic guitar soloing from Mick Box. Lady in Black is an acoustic guitar-based song with five verses in quick succession. It's quite a repetitive tune, but was destined to become a classic amongst Heep fans. High Priestess is a heavier song with a lot of guitar soloing towards the end, but this track fails to impress me really.

Of course, the highlight here is really Salisbury. The story of how the album was named is a peculiar one. The band had been at a gig in Salisbury, but their show had overrun, so the bouncers turned off the power rather than let them play the encore. The band had been given just ten minutes to vacate the premises, but the audience joined in and helped carry their equipment off the stage. As means of a thank you, the album was titled as a tribute to those audience members who helped them.

At 16 minutes, the title track isn't the most progressive epic you'll ever here, but it is certainly epic. The first two minutes are dominated by a Ken Hensley's organ solo with an orchestra sounding away on top, as a sort of introduction. Afterwards the drums and all the other instruments kick in, and the track really begins. In the next 14 minutes, the track ebbs and flows through many different moods and tempos. My favourite part of the song is the 2˝ minute guitar solo which seems to go on forever. This is such an exciting, anthemic track that it's hard not to get carried away with all the drama. A rich composition if there ever was one.

At this point in their career, Uriah Heep were around the peak of their creativity. Even the album out-takes are enjoyable, like the 8 minute Here Am I, available on the deluxe edition on this album. This might just be my favourite Heep album, and I highly recommend it to those who have not heard the group before.

Review by AtomicCrimsonRush
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars "Salisbury" is one of the first great Uriah Heep albums after a slow and steady start with inconsistent albums that always had at least 3 killer tracks. David Byron on vocals, Ken Hensley on keyboards and Mick Box on guitars was the driving force of the band.

It opens with 'Bird of prey' that riffs along with excellent vocals. The music is dynamic and powerful on 'Time to Live' leading to the quiet tranquillity of 'The Park'. The beauty and peace of quiet organ and acoustics with high falsetto vocals are later subjugated by Hensleys' hammering Hammond and Box's monster riff.

'Lady in Black' has a simply awesome proto-metal riff that locks into your brain. The lovely acoustic driven verses are counter balanced by the heavy guitars. The sound is similar to 'Gypsy' and the way it fades to a bass and drum at the end and harmonies is inspired creativity, and then the rest of the music is tracked back in, as if the mixing editor were fiddling with the sound, it's the stuff of innovation.

'High Priestess' is a straight rocker with some great lead guitar on Box's wah-wah pedals.

The final track is 'Salisbury', the monster epic, with huge majestic intro using brass and flute by John Fiddy. The guitars are powerful and drive the song along consistently with one riff after another. The 26 piece orchestra is an inspired touch and it is overwhelmed by crunching Hammond and blazing guitars. It is not as memorable an epic as some others from the 70s, but it is unique to Heep and a definite triumph or a band who opted for shorter tracks on subsequent albums.

The bonus tracks are 'Simon The Bullet Freak' and a single edit of 'High Priestess'. Both bonus tracks are very good rockers and cap off a solid album, showcasing the musicianship of the band. It contains some of the band's best material featuring in many concerts and compilations.

"Salisbury" has a memorable iconic front cover of a tank crushing a flower, that is ironic as the music often reflects the feeling of heavy metal stomping on the flower power generation once and for all. The album comes recommended to those who like hard driving rock with a taste of symphonic orchestral arrangements.

Review by FragileKings
4 stars In my early efforts to discover the roots of heavy metal, I came across the name Uriah Heep and I thought it sounded pretty cool. By chance, the first album I picked up of theirs was Salisbury. I bought the cassette back in the 80s and the lead track, Bird of Prey was not included. Instead High Priestess started off the album and Simon the Bullet Freak, a bonus track here, appeared on side B.

High Priestess impressed me enough with its heavy rock guitars and fast paced soloing. The high vocals and organ I could live with because I was already a fan of Deep Purple. But I read that Bird of Prey was often used to open UH's shows and so when I finally bought the CD many years later, I was at last able to hear the song. I have to say now that even though the music is great as typically UH heavy rock goes, the high vocals here tend to stretch the limits of my ability to appreciate such sounds. One reviewer called them "Danish fjord vocals" because it's the sound someone makes when falling into a cold Danish fjord in winter.

The Park was a surprise track for me. At the age of 14 or 15 one wouldn't expect a young metalhead to like a slow paced song with Hammond organ and acoustic guitar and with a jazzy organ and guitar duet in the middle. But something about the sound really appealed to me. Had the long-haired guys playing Motley Crue and AC/DC on their ghetto blaster at lunch break known what I was listening to I would have received a severe taunting and ridiculing. The lyrics of The Park talk about children playing and the narrator walking somewhat dreamily in the beautiful setting. The most poignant line that always gets my attention is, "My bother's dreams once here did soar until he died at the hand of needless war." It should be noted that this is one of two songs on the album that don't have any words in the chorus, just melodic ah-ah-ahs.

As if to wake you up, the next song - for a long time my favourite of the album - is the heavy rock Time to Live. A simple riff and a pounding beat accompany a song about a man who is a day away from release from prison and his reflection on his crime, killing a man who did something terrible to the prisoner's woman.

If progressive rock is about difficult musical compositions, odd time signatures, and classical-like playing then this next song would seem to defy all that. Based on two chords and a chorus of uh-huh-huhhh-huh-huh-huhhh-huh-huh-huh, Lady in Black is a simple but very catchy tune. Uriah Heep somehow manage to engage the listener in a captivating piece and only later do you stop to think how musically simple that song is.

The real showstopper of this album the main reason why it's on a web site dedicated to progressive rock is the title track Salisbury. At over 16 minutes long and with a full brass and woodwind orchestra and a choir, UH definitely outdid themselves here. The has an overture, a main theme, a lengthy instrumental break with very jazzy sounding organ, bass, and brass, a second vocal theme, a long wah-wah guitar solo, and a return to the main theme before a dramatic end. Recently this song gets frequent plays as I really love this one more now than ever before.

I'd say that this is one of Uriah Heep's best albums of the early 70s, though for progressive rock lovers it will be the Salisbury track that makes the biggest impression.

Review by VanVanVan
5 stars It's often the case with albums that have a sidelong epic that the shorter tracks simply can't stand up. In such cases, I often find myself skipping tracks to get to the epic, or, if the epic comes first, just turning off the album after it's over. It's for precisely this reason that I have trouble even remembering the names of the tracks on the back half of ELP's Tarkus despite having the titular epic completely memorized, and why I so often struggle to remember what "Can-Utility and the Coastliners" sounds like when I could probably transcribe the lyrics to "Supper's Ready" offhand. It's simply very hard for a band to create a selection of shorter tracks that can adequately balance the grandiosity that often comes standard in the longer tracks of classic prog.

With that said, I hope I can accurately convey the level of admiration I have for the construction of Uriah Heep's Salisbury. If you've ever heard the incredibly grandiose title track than you know it's an absolute monster, but the five tracks that accompany it are collectively so good that I never find myself anxious to skip through them. In fact, whenever I listen to this album from front to back, I enjoy myself so much through the shorter tracks that I often forget the massive title track even exists until it starts.

"Bird of Prey," for example, is the kind of track that would be the best song on any album but this one. It has one of the most driving riffs I've ever heard, and David Byron's vocal delivery, while perhaps not technically perfect, sounds absolutely amazing. The album certainly doesn't fall off at all from this very high starting point, either; "The Park" foreshadows the acoustic, falsetto, ethereal style that would show up on Zeppelin's "The Battle of Evermore" only 8 months later, and "Time to Live" comes very close to matching the pounding intensity of "Bird of Prey." With another fantastic vocal delivery from Byron and some stunning guitar solos, it may be a little less subtle than either of the previous tracks but it rocks more than hard enough to make up for it. "Lady In Black" continues on with a fantastic western twang, jangly guitars wonderfully complementing more laid back but still intense vocals, and "High Priestess" is another galloping rocker with some excellent bass playing and an eccentric repeating guitar motif that pulls attention from the admittedly slightly cheesy lyrics.

The album could, in my opinion, end there and still be a 4 star (if very short) effort. But no. The band isn't just content to make some of the most consistently excellent rock of the early 70s, they have to push it to the next level. For the sake of all of us who are listening 40 years later, I'm extremely glad they did. "Salisbury," in my book, deserves to be mentioned along with all the big-name epics. While it might not reach the compositional perfection of "Supper's Ready" or the virtuosic playing of "Karn Evil 9," it's much tighter than the latter and rocks considerably harder than the former, and the result is one heck of a track. Featuring grand horn fanfares that only add and never distract, as well as soaring vocal melodies and killer solos, it's a masterpiece of proggy hard rock and just a killer piece all around.

I had never listened to Uriah Heep prior to hearing this album, but I've been obsessing over it since I first heard it about a month ago. I don't know if the band suspected or suspects that their 1971 album would have the staying power to be heard by twenty-somethings in 2012, but they made a masterpiece then and I'm here to say that it's just as good now. Killer stuff.


Review by kev rowland
4 stars 'Salisbury' has been given the same treatment as the debut, although in this case the track listing has gone from 6 to 13. It is another powerful album although to my ears not quite as good as the debut. But it does include "Lady In Black" which went on to sell millions of copies as a hit single. The title song was over sixteen minutes long and even included an orchestra! The American album cover is somewhat more stark and eye-catching than the British tank which had to be changed as it was too violent for the US!! It is interesting to read the comments by Ken about the first song on the album, its' importance etc. The words are the same on both UK and US releases but the song wasn't as 'Bird Of Prey' opened the UK version, and that was replaced by "Simon The Bullet Freak" in America which was actually on Side Two.

Originally appeared in Feedback #72, Feb 03

Review by stefro
4 stars True rock survivors, Uriah Heep's seemingly neverending career has now spanned five decades and a jaw- dropping forty-four years, not bad for a group often cast by snotty music journalists as one of the un- coolest ever. It all began way back in 1970, with the release of debut album '...Very 'eavy...Very 'umble'(titled 'Uriah Heep' in North America) and, despite numerous line-up shuffles, changing musical trends, financial mismanagement and the relentless onslaught of age and time, the Heep are still going strong, still touring, still issuing albums to their hardcore band of loyal followers, the vast majority of whom are now situated in either North America, Germany or the Balkans. Of course, the group are now - and have been for some time - completely ignored in their homeland, but that doesn't seem to bother them.The one constant throughout their chequered history has been guitarist Mick Box, and it is probably down to the diminutive axeman that the group are still a going concern. Issued in 1971, 'Salisbury' was the first truely progressive Heep record, the group exuding a tougher sound than found on their debut, but also backed up by a full orchestra, thus giving the album an impressively- rich sound. For many prog-rock fans, the first five Heep albums showcase the group at their peak, and they're not wrong. 'Salisbury' would be followed by the almost-as-good 'Look At Yourself', but the group would realy hit paydirt with 1972's 'Demond & Wizards', the ultimate classic Heep record. One more progressive-styled album would follow, 1973's 'The Magicians Birthday'(which, like 'Demons & Wizards', featured a striking Roger Dean cover) before the group started to inch towards a more melodic, FM-friendly sound. Subsequently, the group endured a series of line-up changes, a surprise hit album with 1977's 'Firefly', a drastic downturn in fortunes thanks to the onslaught of Punk Rock, and then come the 1980s, a surprisingly commercial-and-critical rebirth as a heavy metal act. However, for the proper Uriah Heep sound, look no further than the quintet of studio records that kick-started their career. Of them, 'Salisbury' is probably the most cohesive, featuring such golden nuggets as the barnstorming 'Lady In Black' and the epic, sixteen-minute title-track which closes the album on a suitably grandiose note. Heavy prog doesn't get any better. STEFAN TURNER, STOKE NEWINGTON, 2014
Review by Andrea Cortese
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars "Salisbury" is the first peak in the huge Uriah Heep's discography. From a prog point of view it is also the most consistent album they ever recorded.

The backbone is made by three memorable tracks: the heavy opener "Bird of Prey", the perfect archetype of the UH's aggressive rock song (with their multi part choruses trademark), "Lady in Black", the anthem everyone in the world knows, and the closer selft/titled epic, 16 mns of lush orchestration and large scale composing (very brass and woodwind oriented).

The remaining three songs are less known but at the very same level of quality: "The Park" is an introvert and melancholic number with sparse jazzy tinges and "Time To Live" is the heaviest song on the album, based on Mick Box's wah wah guitar. Last but not least "High Priestess" that is probably the most catchy tune, starting off very laid-back, then moving into a breezy fast tempo rocker.

This is one of the band's most diverse recordings, a highlight and one of the most overshadowed of the rock/orchestral crossovers that were fashionable at the time. Furthermore, the typical Hensley's hammond organ-led sound began to take shape.

Easily a five stars rating.

Review by siLLy puPPy
5 stars URIAH HEEP didn't waste any time after releasing their debut ''Very 'Eavy'Very 'Umble' in mid-1970 to little fanfare. The band found that the musicians' chemistry allowed them to progress quickly which allowed them to release not only one but two albums the following year in 1971 of which this album SALISBURY was the first to be released in February. After a debut album more geared towards hard rock with subtle progressive elements, on the second album the songwriting duties were much more in the hands of keyboardist Ken Hensley whereas the debut was more democratic with guitarist Mick Box and lead singer David Byron contributing a substantial amount of the material. The result of this is that SALISBURY was much more of a progressive rock album than a straight forward hard rock album per se. While the tracks and title would remain the same, this album had two different album covers for the UK and North America. The UK version dons the famous army tank shrouded in an orange mist whereas the American counterpart displayed a demonic corpse of some kind with a dark red backdrop.

While the opening track 'Bird of Prey' launched the now standard heavy rock guitar driven formula of the debut (and was even chosen to replace the UK version's 'Lucy Blues' on the fourth track on that album), this album quickly drifts off into more keyboard driven rock that culminates in the grande finale 16-minute title track that featured a 24-piece orchestra filled complete with brass and woodwind sections. But make no mistake, SALISBURY contains hefty doses of heavy power chord guitar bombast, sizzling solos, dynamic bass and drum rhythm sections and the soaring operatic vocals of David Byron which made the band stand out from the pack immediately. While the rock elements hadn't disappeared, they had been infiltrated by many other musical styles. Perhaps none so blatantly apparent than the folk-styled 'Lady In Black' which narrates the story of a man encountering a goddess who consoles him after the turmoil of a major war. The single became a huge hit in Germany upon its re-release in 1977.

SALISBURY was a major step-up in every way from the debut without jettisoning the bluesy hard rock which provided the canvas to paint upon. While considered progressive rock, the easily accessible heavy rock melodic approach remains intact and the prog complexities don't result from jarring inconsistencies with the melodic flow but rather stem from complimentary constructs which allow greater dynamics, more sophisticated songwriting and greater space to improvise clever technical aspects around. The album is also perfectly paced as it allows the hard rock to provide the main emphasis but is punctuated by the softer acoustic guitar and spaced out psychedelic moments to break the monotony. The heavy rock and softer approaches alternate up to the progressive behemoth highlight that closes the album, namely the 16 minute title track that took URIAH HEEP into a whole other level of heavy rock sophistication that no other of the day had even come close to approaching.

This period in the band's history proved to be the most experimental and nothing showcases this ambition than the title track which swallowed up more than half of the album's running time. While based in the same melodic hard rock of the rest of the album, the track turned into an extended progressive jam session that was complimented by John Fiddy's outlandish arrangements for a 22- piece brass and woodwind section which allowed flutes and choirs to augment Byron's vocals into a major production. Add to that some extraordinary organ and guitar solos and the track easily goes down as URIAH HEEP's most ambitious piece of their half century career, a feat they would never tackle again as they settled into the more streamlined hard rock sounds that would launch their success on the album 'Demons and Wizards.' Unfortunately for the band at this point this album was a little too far ahead of its time for hard rock listeners but has resonated strongly for the prog crowds ever since.

Of the two albums released in 1971, this one and the following 'Look At Yourself,' this one has the upper edge for its bold statements that are utterly unique in not only the band's canon but for the era in which it was produced. To me this is the type of sound that the early Mark I version of Deep Purple was trying to capture but didn't quite have the chemistry to pull it off. With URIAH HEEP, all the band members were in sync with the direction of the band's musical development and crafted one of the most demanding albums of their career with an utterly unique hybridization of heavier blues rock fused with the more sophisticated approaches of progressive rock. For many this was deemed unfocused and while it's true that many disciplines of music are required to understand this, i personally find this to be a rather flawless album. The diverse elements that are strewn out are by far its strength not its weakness. If you only care for the simpler hard rock approach, there are countless other albums to explore however if you crave something existing in its own world and is the perfect embodiment of hard rock, blues, classical and prog then look no further. This is an excellent example of that little corner of unbridled experimentation.

Review by TCat
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
5 stars Uriah Heep was a band in flux right from the beginning, even through their best years. They were stable, for the most part, through the release of their first 3 albums as they only had different drummers through that entire time while being able to retain the rest of their members during that time. So, for the release of their 2nd album 'Salisbury', the line up consisted of David Byron on vocals, Mick Box on guitar, Ken Hensley on keyboards and Paul Newton on bass. Keith Baker (the original drummer for Supertramp) takes the place of both Nigel Olsson (who went on to be Elton John's drummer) and Alex Napier on drums, and even he would leave the band after the release of Salisbury because he didn't want to tour with the band, who was beginning to open for some huge names like Three Dog Night and Steppenwolf.

This album would see the band sort of unsure where it wanted to go, but it also saw them venturing into progressive music, their first real steps into the genre. The band would also rely more on the songwriting talents of Ken Hensley, not just Byron and Box as the first album did. This might have been part of the reason for the move into the progressive rock arena.

The album starts off with 'Birds of Prey' which had been a hit between the UK release of their debut album and this album, although it did appear on the US version of 'Very 'eavy, Very 'umble'. Many consider this song Uriah Heep's most popular. It has the heavy guitar riff combined with Byron's over-the-top high vocals. This was the sound that would go down as UH's trademark sound that they would unfortunately abandon way too early in their career for a more commercial sound. You would almost swear that this is where Queen got its sound. 'The Park' proves Hensley's songwriting ability and the movement to progressive music is quite apparent. Byron's falsetto pretty much makes up the entire vocal performance on this one also. The song is more pensive than the opener helping to give this album a similar level of variety and emotion that makes 'The Magician's Birthday' album so great. Again, the leaning towards progressive music is proven after the 3 minute mark as the instrumental break changes tempo and meter and opts for a more fusion style. The vocals resume coming back in acapella at first with instruments slowly joining in again.

'Time to Live' goes back to the dark and heavy sound with a great guitar solo in the introduction. The vocals are more natural this time staying in a mid-range and not soaring off into the stratosphere as often and the song is more of a straightforward rock. 'Lady in Black' goes for a softer, acoustic sound and a steady mid-tempo beat. The fifth track on the UK version of the album is 'High Priestess' while on the US version it is 'Simon the Bullet Freak'. Both songs are written solely by Hensley. The timing of each song is about the same and why they were different is anyone's guess. The former is a bit heavier and more unhinged where the latter is a mid-tempo, yet heavy, blues-based song. Both of them are pretty decent.

'Salisbury' is the final track on the album and is quite an epic track at 16 minutes. The band has recruited a 27-piece brass band to help create a full, head-on progressive masterpiece. It was quite impressive that the band could pull something like this off on what was only their 2nd album. And the song is definitely impressive as it mixes the orchestra with the rock instruments, and Byron's crazy range is more than adequate for a track of this scope. Back in these early days, UH was proving it was a force to be reckoned with and that the musicians involved were extremely talented. It's too bad they never reached the status of bands like Deep Purple or Chicago, but the fact that they had such a hard time holding on to a regular line-up is probably one of the main reasons and that pressure from the label to be more commercial kept them from reaching that level. But this track should take away any doubt that UH deserved more recognition than they ever got. But, the band was given a lot of freedom for this album, and it ended up being another step in elevating their careers at least in its early years.

The extended version of the album released in 2003 adds in a lot more tracks in that it brings 'Simon the Bullet Freak' back to the album and features an almost 8 minute outtake called 'Here Am I'. The other things on this version are 3 single edits of tracks on the album and 2 alternate versions.

When you listen to this album now, it is hard to believe that a band like this would end up not getting the attention that it deserved. If they were left to their own inventiveness, who know what they could have accomplished. Yes, they would have another masterpiece with 'The Magician's Birthday' and 'Demons and Wizards' but after that, the pursuit of commerciality would bury the band into obscurity for quite a while. That, along with an ever changing line-up would prevent the band from ever making a real comeback, though there were occasional decent albums, nothing would ever sound as great from them as these early progressive gems.

Latest members reviews

4 stars URIAH HEEP and probably the most famous album, just for its tank! 1. Bird of Prey go intro that I initially associate with FOCUS yes 'Hocus Pocus' I don't know why; after David's strangled voice; who knows but there is a link between the 2! In short, a rock title that will give you a fever with its ... (read more)

Report this review (#2310933) | Posted by alainPP | Thursday, January 30, 2020 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I discovered Salisbury at the bottom of my brother's milk crate (the older larger crates!), while home convalescing at home with Whooping Cough! I was 14, very bored, took one look at the album cover, and thought the band name was simply ridiculous! Anyone other than myself would simply keep ... (read more)

Report this review (#2265517) | Posted by Tim Lloyd | Tuesday, October 1, 2019 | Review Permanlink

5 stars This is one of those records that could only have been made in the late 60s/early 70s when experiments with epic concept pieces and orchestras were de rigueur. Everyone from The Nice, Deep Purple, Pink Floyd, Yes, Colosseum and, perhaps more surprisingly, Uriah Heep was getting in on the act. Sal ... (read more)

Report this review (#1457006) | Posted by Cactus Choir | Friday, August 28, 2015 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I'm rating Salisbury as "Essential" because of the title track, period. The bass guitar & keyboard work is beyond awesome. That one song is to the rest of the album as the Sun is to the solar system. Anybody who wants to introduce a Black Sabbath fan to prog addiction only needs to play "Sali ... (read more)

Report this review (#911188) | Posted by riesling | Thursday, February 7, 2013 | Review Permanlink

3 stars A very good album, although I prefer DEMONS AND WIZARDS and MAGICIANS BIRTHDAY, and even LOOK AT YOURSELF, to this 1971 release form Uriah Heap. Of course, the long title track "Salisbury" is the highlight here, covering many forms of music that really show what this group could accomplish on only ... (read more)

Report this review (#753254) | Posted by mohaveman | Monday, May 14, 2012 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Salisbury is definitely one of Uriah Heep's best classic albums, with some dark soaring rockers like the opener "Bird Of Prey" where David Byron best displays his falsetto vocals. Another highpoint is "The Park", a slow ballad with beautiful soaring harmonies accompanied by a light blend of aco ... (read more)

Report this review (#595594) | Posted by Frankie Flowers | Saturday, December 24, 2011 | Review Permanlink

4 stars England 1971. Second album of a band that will become historic. It seems too reductive to define heavy-prog this album. Maybe, in time, the sound, the music of Uriah Heep have defined a style, but here, in this moment in history encapsulated, in full evolution of the music, still you can not do ... (read more)

Report this review (#557913) | Posted by anywhere | Thursday, October 27, 2011 | Review Permanlink

5 stars In my perception "Salisbury" was and is one of the more important album of 1971, able to join Deep Purple Mk1, Deep Purple Mk2, Yes and Genesis and all in one composition, to create a new style: Power Heavy Prog! In this sense some songs are pure Proto Heavy Metal songs with tons of guitars an ... (read more)

Report this review (#384668) | Posted by 1967/ 1976 | Saturday, January 22, 2011 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Wow, a true meaning of the genre, Heavy Prog. Along with 2112 by Rush, this is easily one of the heaviest of all progressive rock music, and one of the best. Beautiful electric guitar, acoustic, basslines pumping, and hammond organ screaming, this album has it all. David Byron's vocals have ... (read more)

Report this review (#254197) | Posted by Rushlover13 | Thursday, December 3, 2009 | Review Permanlink

3 stars the first title Bird of Prey 'is of great fabuleux.aiment' Uriah Heep ', everything is good in that title, as well Heavy Prog love, madness and more musicality, technical at all. The second title 'The Park' is very sweet, it is a beautiful ballad ... calm, asked. 'Time to Live' the third way is v ... (read more)

Report this review (#236937) | Posted by Discographia | Thursday, September 3, 2009 | Review Permanlink

5 stars An Unlikely Command Performance Of Progressive Rock Given the choice of Uriah Heep records to bring along for an extended sojourn to a desert island most connoiseurs would invariably choose either the mystical Demons and Wizards or the enchanting Magaician's Birthday adorned in all their spl ... (read more)

Report this review (#191467) | Posted by Vibrationbaby | Tuesday, December 2, 2008 | Review Permanlink

5 stars HIGH PRIESTESS (LADY IN BLACK) IN SALISBURY Today I've a free day, since an appointment is jumped and I have taken a free day to dedicate to my family. So I decided to review the album of my nick name. That is the first Uriah heep totally masterpiece. Because yes, "Very 'eavy... Very 'umble" is ... (read more)

Report this review (#138907) | Posted by Lady In Black | Tuesday, September 18, 2007 | Review Permanlink

5 stars This is my favourite Uriah Heep album: It starts brilliantly with Bird of Prey, a hard rock classic, Mick Box guitar is powerful, and the drumming by Keith Baker is hard and fast. David Byrons vocal is soaring, rising to a pitch unheard of on any track since Gypsy. The Park is gentler wit ... (read more)

Report this review (#134022) | Posted by Byron73 | Tuesday, August 21, 2007 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Somehow I had managed to avoid listening to Uriah Heep until just recently. Not on purpose, but just never thought to check them out. I was aware of them by name, but never bothered to check them out. After seeing so many fine reviews of this album, I finally checked it out - and I was not ... (read more)

Report this review (#118852) | Posted by Disconnect | Wednesday, April 18, 2007 | Review Permanlink

4 stars One of the best albums in Uriah Heep discography (if not the best) ............The Album by which the heeps established their names among the prog rock bands.............the finest peace in the album is of course song Salisbury (not only in this album in my opinion), ... The Album starts wi ... (read more)

Report this review (#115779) | Posted by Giorgi U. | Tuesday, March 20, 2007 | Review Permanlink

4 stars This album single-handedly gives anyone the reason to be a fan of Uriah Heep. Almost all the songs are great and the band shows a clear direction which it will follow in the next few years. Ken Hensley was sparkling with creativity and he contributed the main structures of the songs in this album ... (read more)

Report this review (#83983) | Posted by Sharier | Monday, July 17, 2006 | Review Permanlink

5 stars There has always been a rather stupid argument made by some that Uriah Heep were a poor imitation of Deep Purple and that David Byron couldn't sing. This is as far from the truth as possible, and if the first album failed to prove that UH were above second tier hard rock than this was the album ... (read more)

Report this review (#62415) | Posted by | Friday, December 30, 2005 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Now this albums contains one typical prog song: 'Salisbury'. For over 30 years I'm addicted to this masterpiece of 16 minutes. The other 5 songs are pleasent to listen to, especially 'Lady in Black'. Overall well sung, well played, well arranged. This is a must have for many among us or at least ... (read more)

Report this review (#60193) | Posted by Hermanes | Monday, December 12, 2005 | Review Permanlink

5 stars In my youth, thirty years earlier, Heep Uriah was supposed to be a pretty poor group of hard rock. Today, it's with enjoyment that I see it cataloged in the progressive music as a good group of rock Art. I don't like offering five stars to any winds (without knowing some of my colleagues of pr ... (read more)

Report this review (#44990) | Posted by miedj | Wednesday, August 31, 2005 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Opening with a typical UH heavy song Bird Of Prey sets the tone for the album with strong rhythmic heavy guitars, great vocals and fabulous screams by the Uriah Heep choir, the song loses strength near the end, but it's a great opening to an amazing album nonetheless. Ken Hensley's keyboard ta ... (read more)

Report this review (#39780) | Posted by tuxon | Tuesday, July 19, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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