Thursday, April 10, 2014

40 Year Itch: I Hear A Symphony



    Canterbury art rockers Caravan follow-up one of their finest albums, 1973's For Girls Who Grow Plump in the Night, with this live set recorded with the 39-piece New Symphonia Orchestra. Hey, it worked for Procol Harum (whose live album with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra was their top seller) and Deep Purple ( 1969's Concerto For Group and Orchestra). The Caravan offering doesn't have as many fans but I think it's a treat, especially on the longer tracks like "For Richard" from 1969's If I Could Do It All Over Again, I'd Do It All Over You. A remastered version is longer and much better recorded.


These Italian prog rockers/ jazz fusionists sported both the softest and most melodic tunes in progressive rock and one of the fastest drummers ever on record : the perfectly named Furio Chirico.


 Check out the track "Positivo/Negativo" and you too will be wondering why this album is out of print.

Having broken worldwide with their novelty number "Hocus Pocus", these Dutch masters of progressive rock get serious again and produce the fan favorite Hamburger Concerto. It's a little surprising that a band with a recently inducted guitar god (in Jan Akkerman)  has recorded an album so dominated by keyboardist (Thijs Van  Leer). A grower that requires patience and appreciation.

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