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Moody Blues - Days of Future Passed
Label: Polygram Records
Release: 1967

Tracklisting:
The Day Begins
Dawn: Dawn Is A Feeling
The Morning: Another Morning
Lunch Break: Peak Hour
The Afternoon:
---i. Forever Afternoon (Tuesday?
---ii. (Evening) Time to Get Away
Evening:
---i. The Sun Set
---ii. Twilight Time
The Night: Nights In White Satin
Days of Future Passed - Moody Blues
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This 1967 recording, the first with the brand new Moodies lineup, is incredibly different to that slick R n' B sound that came before. This album is very influential - one of the first major albums that could be called "progressive", and it's influence can be seen in many a prog act that came afterwards. As it is, it's a great album - the only real major problem this album has is the unneccessary classical background. It wasn't really needed - the songs flow well enough without it. Unfortunately, this stops the album from getting an on the spot 10, as all the actual songs here are great.

As usual, we'll ignore the contribution of Graeme Edge - bar a solid backbeat, his songwriting mainly consisted of dull poetry. As for the other members, they're all set to on, and they all contribute excellent songs. After the "Day Begins" - an overture for the piece, Mike Pinder sets us underway with "Dawn is A Feeling" - a somber, slow masterpiece. In direct contrast is Ray Thomas's "Another Morning" - which is his normal childlike fare - catchy and great. This album generally sets out the roles that each band member was to play right from the beginning: Pinder, the "Moody" part of the band, Thomas, the childlike, happy soul, Lodge the rocker, Hayward the lovesick, grandoise man, and Edge the beatnik.

Speaking of Lodge, he quickly decides to rock, with that exceptional "Peak Hour" ditty - wonderful chorus on that one. We then get to the lesser-known hit of the album - Hayward's "Forever Afternoon (Tuesday?)". Running on a great acoustic hook, and a bouncy chorus, the song is a great showcase of the atmospheric qualities of Hayward's vocals - with that "sighhhhhh..." part that links up the verses, chorus etc. Beautiful usage of the voice - Hayward was an outstanding singer. Lodge also contributes to this track, with the second part "(Evening) Time To Get Away", a nice, bouncy little ending to the whole piece.

Pinder and Thomas both have a hand in the next multi-parter. Pinder shines on the atmospheric "Sun Set" - an enchanting, hypnotising piece. Thomas then contributes the spaced-out "Twilight Time" coda - another excellent ending. Take all of these songs, put them in order, and then end it right there with the band's calling card, and signature tune - despite the
fact that people may very well consider it overplayed, Justin Hayward's "Nights In White Satin" cannot be denied - it's definitely the best one here. From the dark verses, to that soaring chorus, it's a truly outstanding work. Not to mention the classic mellotron lead, and Ray Thomas's spectacular flute solo. Utterly brilliant. Sadly, it doesn't end here - Edge
embarrasses himself with "Late Lament" - but it's less than a minute long, so it can be ignored, although it's a pretty poor ending to the whole album.

Shame about the orchestration and Edge poetry - if it wasn't for those, this album would get a straight 10. Although it gets a very, very high 9 - it's a brilliant work, and a great place to start for anyone who wants to get into the Moody Blues. In fact, it's probably the best place to start, seeing as every band member's roles are set out perfectly on this one - that and it has that "Nights In White Satin" song on it. Excellent, excellent album.

Reviewer Rating of CD :

brilliant debut (i k now they had another album before this, but this is the debut of the moodies sound). so brilliant, they structured their "core" seven albums just like this. :P each album is quite exsquisite, and this one's no different. the orchestration CAN be quite corny, but the songs themselves are brilliant, and go through a day quite nicely, thank you. it has two of their biggest hits, tuesday afternoon and their BIGGEST HIT EVER nights in white satin. endlessly listenable, with some of the most beautiful melodies written by any band, and featuring heart stopping singing, this album is amazing. buy it for lovessake! the moodies just want you to love! tha'ts not so bad!

Reviewer Rating of CD :

 


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