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Publication date Usage Public Domain Mark 1. LibriVox volunteers bring you eight recordings of "To A Skylark. To A Skylark was completed by Shelley in late June Review by jamesbaldwin Prog Reviewer. When I listened to the album I had a lot of expectations, but I was quite disappointed even if the sound of the disc was very good, clear: unlike the wall of sound of Phil Spector, you felt very good and distinct instruments, close as if they played in front of Album) ears.
The short opening and closing themes both by Flowers are not significant. The first track is easy listening at the end; in fact, it was chosen as a single. Westwind, written by Peek, is quite good, but does not take off; and then, finally a great piece: Sarabande.
But the credit belongs to Mr. Georg Friedrich Haendel, although the arrangement of John Williams is excellent.
The last song of the side A, "Connecting Rooms", by the drummer Fry, is a nice surprise: a wonderful mini suite with three movements, which goes from romantic, to sweet, to twilight, to the enthusiast. Magnificent piece, the best of the album.
The second side begins, like the first, with a well-beaten piece, then come the two compositions of Gray, which in my opinion are the weak point of the album, especially the slow and discharged "Hello". Gray does not seem particularly original and creative to me.
The album is redeemed in the final with the huge circus number of "Dance of the Big Fairies", an entertaining piece with an irresistible performance of the tuba, with piano and harpsichord to delineate a folk dance, whether Greek or Arabic is not known. Sarabande is the other peak. The rest of the Lp is quite mediocre, however always dignified I wonder how the first two albums are with Monkman, I suppose more originals.
Maybe I will find them. This is an album however discreet. Three stars. Review by Matti Prog Reviewer. In my teens I couldn't quite decide whether it was an over-extended bore or a fascinating piece of music painting inner images to my mind. It sure demands a friendly and patient attitude from the listener but at least partially it is rewarding.
Not bad, actually. Tristan Fry's marimba starts 'Dance of the Little Fairies', joined soon by piano, acoustic guitars and rhythm section. This joyfully galloping tune is a good example of the SKY music operating between the no-man's land of "pop" and "art" music. The second CD opens with a naive 'Bathroom Song' which has its own humorous charm, even if musically it is a throwaway tune.
Except for the Glitterball", writes Herbie Flowers about it. The rest of the set varies between narcotic and disappointing. But summa summarum: if you appreciate SKY also when they don't rock at all, there's no solid reason not to enjoy this double album as well.
Just don't expect it to capture the "live energy" normally felt on live albums. SKY was not a rock band in that sense! The danceable 'Masquerade' Khatchaturian sounds like it was written by - or for - this group. The percussion comes to the fore in this strong arrangement. The next tune 'To Yelasto Pedi' is taken from the film "Z", familiar to many also as a sung version. This rhythmic track contains a small A Sky Darkly - Solar Bears - Supermigration (File moment for acoustic guitar and marimba.
The nocturnal arrangement gives it a Satie-like spirit. I like the harpsichord and rich guitar texture on 'Fantasy' Bach but Baroque music suits much worse for crossover treatment. From that point of view this one - with an TV performance entitled "Sky: Night Music" - is the least satisfying, both because of the shortness approximately 46 minutes and the cheaper visual looks.
There's a fine acoustic arrangement of 'Fool on the Hill'. Tristan Fry's joke-like 'Tuba Smarties' seems to have been a concert perennial, unfortunately. In case I won't review other albums, let it be said that Sky 3's DVD featuring a lengthy concert from Westminster Abbey is very enjoyable, and Sky 2's slightly rockier DVD is recorded in with Francis Monkman still in the band.
Dies Irae is a non-album 12" single by Sky released in The A-side is a seven and a half minutes long up-tempo, instrumental piece in the style of early Sky. The track would have fitted very well on Album) of the band's first two full-length studio releases and is up to par with much material from those albums.
If you are a fan of those albums, you will almost certainly enjoy Dies Irae as well. The track has since appeared as a bonus track on some re-releases of the self-titled debut and I think also on some rare compilation album s.
Being a single with only the A-side being of real interestthis is of course far from essential. But it is a good piece of classic Sky and as such it is worthy of the fan's attention. As far as I'm aware, there are three officially released live recordings by Sky: the live concert video Live In Concert: Bremen, Germany actually filmed and recorded in and released on DVD in ; Five Live a double vinyl album originally released in but subsequently re-released in CD ; and the present one, Live In Nottingham recorded and filmed inbut made available on CD--and MP3 on DVD under the Classic Rock Legends banner--in Out of these three live releases, my first choice is without a doubt the Live In Concert: Bremen, Germany video, which despite a less than perfect sound and picture quality captures the band at their best and in my opinion this recording outshines the band's studio albums.
My least favourite of the three is the incoherent Five Live album, which admittedly has several highlights, but overall lacks direction. This brings us to the present recording which falls in between those two in terms of quality. I think it is fair to say that these three live releases focus on different aspects of the band: while the Bremen recording focuses on the band's progressive side, and Five Live more on the band's jazzy side, Live In Nottingham focuses on the band's Easy-Listening side.
The latter showcases an altogether more laid back band. The three live recordings together give a nice overview. One thing that makes Live In Nottingham stand out is the presence of violin, mandolin, and ukelele. The first of these is obviously intended as a follow-up to the second. Together with Cannonball from the self-titled debut from the two Hotta-numbers are the most rocking tracks here, but they are somewhat less rocking than other versions of these tunes.
These are certainly good and enjoyable versions, but I can't help note that the band feels and sounds somewhat tired here compared to the aforementioned Live In Concert: Bremen film. Jehad is a Middle-Eastern-sounding number that is not present on any studio recording. It is dark and atmospheric yet never degenerates into ambient territory. I like it. Reverie similarly never appeared on a studio MP3. It is a beautiful, mellow, Classical piece driven by grand piano and acoustic guitar. It is very solemn to the point of almost sending you to sleep--in a good way!
It is at this point that we get a couple of lesser numbers. Meheeco is jazzier here than the studio version on 's Sky 3 and starts with a rather long improvisational part that I don't value highly.
Bruised - Ian Francis Osborne - The Luxury Of Small Differences (File, MP3), Aalixir (Rhemet Remix) - Ouroboros (2) - Sigillum Lunae (File), The Lady Is A Tramp - Milt Jackson - Second Nature (Vinyl, LP), Dirty Dancin - Ol Dirty Bastard - The Dirty Story: The Best Of ODB (CD), My Generation, Koocachoo - Kylie* - Live In Sydney (DVD), Tie Your Mother Down - Queen - Live Killers (Vinyl, LP, Album), Warrenous Deprecy - Patisserie - Coloscrotology (CDr), Murphy - Beau Katzman* - The Kat (Vinyl, LP, Album)