BARCLAY JAMES HARVEST FEATURING LES HOLROYD : REVOLUTION DAYS
Label : Pure Music
Release Year : 2003
Length : 67:25
Review from ProgArchives : Instead of grouping forces (which they should do), their two leaders decided to go each in their own direction. Each of them joining with another founding member. Mel in this case and Woolly with John Lees. Woolly's departure (1978) signified the end of their progressive and bombastic approach which culminated in their fabulous "Live '74" release. An extremely long period of weak albums followed (although commercial success was high, particularly in Germany) with here and there some good songs featured. But most of those ones were signed by John. So, I really was expecting the worse from this album. Actually, this won't be as bad as could have imagined. While this BJH plays rock ballads, it is mostly OK, even if Les's voice might be a bit mellow throughout a whole album. Pleasant mellotron is even present at times which will definitely bring you to their most brilliant days. Both "It's My Life" and "Missing You" are really pleasant. The first poor one though is "That Was Then... This Is Now". This attempt to a more rocking sound is real bad. But this is not a new given fact. I thought the same already in some songs of their Harvest days. Some thirty years before this release, so... A song like "Prelude" also belongs to the nice moments of this album while "Quiero El Sol" is another poor country music type of song. Press next or escape to avoid it and discover "Totally Cool" which is a good and aerial rock ballad with good background keys. One of my fave here. The highlight of this album is "Sleepy Sunday". A very good composition : emotional vocals, sublime backgroound keys (but this is a tendancy that the listener will discover all along this album) and nice guitar. It really belongs to the best that BJH has produced since the last fifteen years (of this release). Vibrant. The guitar solo at the end of "Marlene" is very good as well. Emotion again (as you might know already, I like these...). Now that Mel has passed away (RIP), I believe that it is best for BJH (whatever brand) to concentrate on live albums. Unless (who knows) that a reunion of the trio could take place. Might be interesting. I really can't say that this album is a good one (only half of the songs only). Just average because of to many tracks lowering my scoring (the acoustic "Life Is For Living" or the dull "Revolution Day" for instance). But it is better than what I expected. Two stars.