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The Moody Blues - A Question Of Balance CD (album) cover


The Moody Blues


Crossover Prog

3.51 | 305 ratings

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5 stars My perspective on the Moodys is perhaps slightly different than the typical fan in that I find Question thru Seventh Sojourn to be their pinnacle as opposed to the backsliding years. There is maybe only one weak track on the last 3 albums, and my only hint for now is that it is not on "A Question of Balance".

The album is bracketed by two perennials, the still fresh sounding "Question", and the now dated and starry eyed "Balance", which is nonetheless a near perfect poetic statement and song construction, not to mention a nostalgic blast. In between you have such gentle dignified works as "How is it we are Here", "The Tide Rushes In", and "Dawning is the Day", juxtaposed with bouncy and gently chiding rockers like "Tortoise and the Hare" and "It's Up to You". While group vocal harmonies were always a particular strength of the band, they really seem to give themselves an extra push in this direction on a Question of Balance, particularly in "Don't You Feel Small" and "Minstrel Song".

Sure, most of the themes were being revisited by this time, and one can find earlier "versions" on the much weaker "On the Threshold of a Dream" or the slightly weaker "To Our Children's...", but the progression is so evident here. Just compare the rather thin "To Share Our Love" with "Don't You Feel Small", or the pretty "Never Comes the Day" with the cosmically significant statement of purpose in "Question". In terms of a breakthrough, it can be argued that "Melancholy Man" was the first real Pinder ode to depression, and perhaps his best contribution as a Moody (although I might go with "My Song" on the following album). In any case, it is the only real downer on the disk, but in a way that is oddly uplifting, an acknowledgement of the reality of suffering as it were.

No band has attracted more critical bashing than the Moody Blues. In my opinion, where the 7 classic albums are concerned, these attacks are misguided and should be diverted into self examination on the part of the offending parties. Listen for yourself.

kenethlevine | 5/5 |


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