Week of October 9, 2005

Arcadium

Personnel:
Graham Best - Bass, Vocals
Alan Ellwood - Keyboards, Vocals
Robert Ellwood - Vocals, Guitar
John Albert Parker - Drums
Miguel Sergides - Vocals, Guitar

Album:
Arcadium (Breathe Awhile) (Middle Earth MDLS 302) 1969
(released on Vogue in France in 1969)
CD: Repertoire REP 4855, 2000

45:
Sing My Song/Riding Alone (Middle Earth MDS 102) 1969

All tracks (composed by Miguel Sergides) on their extremely rare album are filled with an atmosphere of anguish and despair, even in their quieter moments. Both lyrics and music are struggling for expression, to the effect of creating a very dense and at times impenetrable album, which is worth your while nonetheless. Although barely escaping perennial threats of murkiness and even sloppiness, the convincing emotional contents save the day for this album. Especially impressive are the longer tracks like the opening I'm On My Way with its telling title, in which the song structure gets blown to pieces by emotional outbursts on guitar, leading into an altogether strange and hitherto unheard of territory. This track was also issued on the rare label sampler, Earthed, from 1970. Due to mediocre vinyl, there are practically no copies to be found in truly excellent condition. Their 45 is also hard to find. The A-side is nicely paced with subtle guitar work whilst the flip is gently pleasing and atmospheric.

They also appeared on an EP, Aries, in 1969. Other compilation appearances include Poor Lady on Progressive Music (LP).

(Marcel Koopman/Mike Warth)

Taken from The Tapestry of Delights - The Comprehensive Guide to British Music of the Beat, R&B, Psychedelic and Progressive Eras 1963-1976, Vernon Joynson   ISBN 1 899855 04 1


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