Barclay James Harvest – “Octoberon”

The Sleeve:
105_5240 105_5241

The Liner/Sleeve Notes:
None.

Personal Review:
 So, I know nothing about this band, nor have I ever, ever heard of them. I simply liked the cover and the special price sticker, so I bought it.

 The album opens with “Rock N’ Roll Star” (which isn’t the usual opening track, but this is the German pressing) – anyways, it starts off with some pretty good guitar playing and an amazing sound. The vocals are pretty superb, I’m definitely loving this song so far, not too much to complain about here. The chorus alone makes this song pretty amazing. After that comes another song that starts off with some pretty heavy guitar playing, “Polk Street Rag” comes next, and my god, how have I not heard of any of these songs before? They’re all amazing. Like, this is what music should be! I’m digging the vocals, I’m digging the guitar playing. Then comes “Believe In Me” which goes right into the vocals, no badass guitar playing, just the vocals, and hey, it’s not bad, a little slower, but the drums and the organ playing is pretty great. The A-Side closes with the song “Suicide?” (yes, there is a question mark on it.) it’s more or less a ballad, and once more it goes right into the musicianship. It’s a little slow for me, and I liked more of the progressive rock songs the album had going for a bit, but I guess this is okay too… the song kind just slowly fades out into what I can only assume is the sounds of traffic?

The B-Side opens with “The World Goes On” and it starts off slow, and continues on slowly, but the song is definitely a good one, it’s more or less a really big long ballad, slower but with great vocals, lyrics and musicianship. It’s a pretty solid track. I’d listen to it over and over again. Then comes “May Day” which is a slow start, but the guitar solo right in the middle makes it all the more worth it, and the vocals are pretty amazing, I’m definitely loving this album this far in. Then comes the choir part, and it’s a bit off-setting, due to the fact it was like amazing rock music, then boom choir music, the only band that has the okay to do that is the Rolling Stones, I don’t understand this. Okay, soon as the band begins playing in too, it becomes amazing, the heavy progressive rock with the choir – it’s amazing. The album ends with “Ra” which opens like a James Bond movie theme song, the drums are quite great, and the guitar playing going along with it rocks too. These vocals are ever-so-quiet, it’s weird. It occasionally picks up, both vocally and musically from time to time, but it’s nothing over the top or anything. It’s a pretty good closing track.

Interesting Facts:
None.

Track Listing:
A1 – Rock N’ Roll Star
A2 – Polk Street Rag
A3 – Believe In Me
A4 – Suicide?

B1 – The World Goes On
B2 – May Day
B3 – Ra

Label:
2383 407

Catalog Number:
Polydor

Studio Musicians & Other Album Credits:
Produced by Barclay James Harvest
Vocals, Guitar & Songwriter – John Lees
Vocals, Bass Guitar, Acoustic guitar & Songwriter – Les Holroyd
Vocals, Keyboards & songwriter – Woolly Wolstenholme
Drums & Percussion – Mel Pritchard
Orchestra Conductor  – Ritchie Close
Choir – The Capriol Singers
Choir Conductor – Gerald E. Brown
Engineers – David Rohl & Steve C. Smith

Other Albums I Own by Barclay James Harvest:
None.

Released:
1976

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