1977, Music

Aerie Faerie Nonsense (1977) by The Enid

Someone forgot to tell these guys they’re supposed to be a rock band.

Maybe that isn’t fair, but this record really makes me feel like this band saw the emergence of synthesizers and thought “Finally we can make our dreams of being classical composers come true!” The only problem is… well, there are a lot of problems:

  • As high art music, this isn’t very good. It feels more like the instrumental parts of an American musical than it does of the classical music its imitating. It’s way to safe and obvious to be anything modern. (It’s pretty clear these guys don’t listen to composers after a certain point in history. They’re okay with some Romantic music, but that’s as far as they’re willing to go.) If you were to an orchestra play this, from some young new composer, you would a) decide to ignore his later work and b) think “Wow is he ever conservative” (and also not very good).
  • Much like many bands in the ’80s, these guys got way too excited about the capabilities of ’70s musical technology – this record is just drowning in shitty synthesizers not doing a very good job of imitating other instruments.
  • Though this band is ostensibly a rock band – as there are two guitarists (two guitarists!) a bass player, and a drummer in addition to the keyboard player, and there’s also a trumpet player – they seem to have forgotten how to play rock music. This is more like someone taking rock band instrumentation and trying to play classical music, which was a fad in the early ’60s. But they would be better off covering some good music than playing this mediocre stuff.
  • The mix is not good: the bass is impossible to hear and the guitars are usually only audible when they are playing lines that sound like they were written for violins,

This is one of those bands I read about when I was deep into prog a long time ago. I wish I had re-read about them before I bothered with this. This is pretty fucking lame.

4/10 (I was going to give it 5/10 but then I got angry)

PS: This was released during the year punk broke. I mean, these guys were just on another planet musically.

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