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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Paradise 9

Live at Amersham Arms

Review by Gary Hill

If you like Hawkwind, and particularly the punky Nik Turner era of the band, you will like this. A lot of it lands close to that territory. This live album is a solid and a good introduction to this act.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2015  Volume 6 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Nothing for Tomorrow

This rocker is very much like the punky side of Hawkwind. It’s cool space rock. The space jam at the end of the tune is classy.

Into the Ethers
More on the melodic rocking side of Hawkwind, this is even tastier than the opener was. The lines of melody dancing over the top in waves are great. The vocals land it closer to Robert Calvert or Nik Turner era Hawkwind. The clarinet reinforces that Nik Turner element. Yes, I know with Turner it was typically a saxophone, but it’s close enough for rock and roll. This has some cool shifts and changes.
Broken Promises
There is a bit of a reggae edge to this. Beyond that, it feels a lot like something like the Cure..
Distant Dreams
This is mellower. It’s also got more space rock. It’s kind of like jam band meets space rock. The jam later in the track is both more Hawkwind-like and more pure prog. It has some killer bass work, too.
Crystalized Moments
Folk music, space rock and more merge on this number. It again has some elements of Hawkwind along with jam band and other things.
Points of View/Take Me to the Future
The first half of this sounds very much like a Nik Turner era Hawkwind stomper. The second half is a more melodic space jam with flute music. It’s again quite Hawkwind-like. It rocks out more as it continues forward. The jamming gets reborn later in a new space rocking progression. Again, it’s very reminiscent of Hawkwind. The vocals bring that Nik Turner sound, too. I really dig the guitar soloing on the later instrumental passage.
State of the Nation
More of an energetic punky rocker, this does still have some Hawk elements. It’s perhaps more like The Fall then Hawkwind, though. Whatever you call it, though, it’s another killer tune
 
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