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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Gary Wright's Wonderwheel

Ring of Changes

Review by Gary Hill

This is a long lost album from a Gary Wright project. It is perhaps not actually prog rock, but there are enough prog leanings to put it there. This has a guest appearance by George Harrison. It's a great album that really has a trademark 1970s sound. If you like Gary Wright's music, you'll enjoy this.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2016  Volume 5 at lulu.com/strangesound.
Track by Track Review
Lovetaker

This powers in with a killer 70s rock vibe. The cut works through from there with the addition of keyboards and layers of vocals making the magic. This really is a mgic tune, too. The mellower keyboard driven bridge brings it more into the realm of progressive rock. This really is such a great tune. It has an exceptional vocal arrangement and some great instrumental work, too. I particularly love some of the guitar soloing.

Wild Bird
The mellower motif that brings this into being makes me think of early Pink Floyd quite a bit. As it works out from there we get more of a mainstream rock sound. There is definitely a psychedelic edge to this this, too.
Something For Us All
More of an old time high energy rock and roller, this is cool stuff. It gets into more of a mainstream 1970s rock groove as it continues. It's a classic rock masterpiece, really.
Set on You
There's a down home folk element to this piece. It has definite hints of country in the mix. Folk rock is the main order of business here, really.
Ring of Changes
Folk rock with some prog elements would be a good way to think of this piece. It's a melodic number that works very well. I'm not sure that I'd consider it the best song here, but it really is in the running.
Goodbye Sunday
George Harrison guests here providing some guitar soloing. This song really does seem to have some of his musical trademarks, too.
For A Woman
A slower moving, mellower cut, this is very much a classic piece of 70s rock. There is a definite blues rock element here, but it's tempered with some proggy things, mainly from the keyboards. There is a bit of an Allman Brothers vibe to this in a lot of ways, too.
Workin' on a River
In a lot of ways this reminds me of Wright's song "Love Is Alive."  This an uptempo rocker that works quite well. It's one of the proggier things here. It has a great vocal arrangement, too.
Creation
Much more of a prog ballad kind of song, this is intricate and quite beautiful. It is packed with emotion, too. Around the three and a half minute mark, though, it powers out into a much more rocking motif. I love the alternating lines of vocals we get within that section.
I Know
This bonus track was originally a single. It's a cool proggy mainstream rocker. It works quite well.
What We Can Do
Here we get a cool bluesy rock groove. This has proggy elements, but lands closer to electric blues.  This is a previously unreleased song from the sessions for this album.
Somebody
Another bonus track, this has some definite leanings toward the type of territory occupied by the music of both Eric Clapton and George Harrison. It's a cool rocker with some prog leanings.
 
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