OK, the name isn't that cool (or maybe it is, I don't know), the album cover is a bit "over the top" and it comes from the 70s: some would probably dismiss it without giving it a spin. Well, shame on you! We are talking about one of the best albums in the history of rock!!! Five tracks full of extra-terrestrial composing and playing ability!!! They are from Germany, guys, and they know their stuff!!!
Lucifer's Friend were formed in 1970, from the ashes of The Rattles and Asterix. The recruited English singer John Lawton (from the Les Humphries Singers and later replacing David Byron in Uriah Heep) and their eponymous album saw light of day in 1970: a great hard rock debut, much in the likes of Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath but infected with that great dark kraut sound of members Peter Hesslein (guitar), Peter Hecht (keyboards), Dieter Horns (bass) and Joachim Rietenbach (drums).
Banquet is their third album and it's not only their best but should be included in the top 10 of rock albums of all time (yeah, I know, many of you will probably disagree but I do not give a damn, honestly!!!). Their sound is very different to their debut, now including far more sophisticated compositions and an entire classical orchestra, too!
The opening track, "Spanish Galleon" is definitely a cornerstone of their genre: an 11-minute epic opening with a funky attitude and evolving into a masterpiece of all kinds. You can even hear a wah wah clarinet and trumpet in there! Lawton's voice is outstanding albeit a bit "too epic". The second track, "Thus Spoke Oberon" is not from this earth! Piano, eerie voice and lyrics and a bloody great instrumental break at stellar speed in the middle!!! "Sorrow" is another epic masterpiece of electric piano madness and orchestral mayhem!!! The album has its pop moments too, notable for the time produced.
Give it a proper listen (a few spins are necessary for its conception) and you will end up begging for more!!!
Enjoy (you will, you will!!!)
Labels: banquet, friend, lucifer's