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North (John Lees' Barclay James Harvest)

a Studio release
Barclay James Harvest

Release Year: 2013

Date Label Catalog # Comments

Released on 7 Oct 2013, on the Esoteric Antenna label.

The album is available in three formats:

  • standard CD
  • deluxe digipack double CD with a bonus disc of highlights from the band's 2011 concert at the Buxton Opera House
  • 180g heavyweight vinyl single LP (with two less tracks than the CD versions) in a gatefold sleeve
Added To Proggnosis Database on: 10/11/2013 12:00:00 AM
Entry Last Updated on: 10/31/2013 6:27:00 AM by: DBSilver
  1. If You Were Here Now
  2. Ancient Waves
  3. In Wonderland
  4. On Leave
  5. The Real Deal
  6. On Top of the World
  7. Unreservedly Yours
  8. North
  9. The End of the Day

Reviewed by Marc on 31 Oct 2013

Barclay James Harvest was at their peak in the seventies, playing accessible melodic Prog. They were often compared to The Moody Blues and anyone that listened to both bands could easily understand why, even though the two groups differed a lot on many aspects, one being that BJK never rocked as much as the Moodies (i.e. Ride My See-Saw, I'm Just a Singer...). In the eighties BJK went for a more commercial sound, still making quality music, but with lukewarm success.

North is their first abum featuring original material in nearly 15 years and it follows Woolly Wolstenholme recent death. The album is dedicated to him. 

Like for Fish's new album, I can't say I was expecting much form North. Well, again, I was very positively surprised. What I find on this CD is very fresh and moving music with powerfull lyrics. North is an album that would fit well with BJH early LPs, alternating symphonic prog pieces with poppier ones. The moving finale triptyque  "Unreservedly Yours"/"North"/"The End Of The Day" is a great ending for an excellent album, and even makes me think of the more moving pieces on Big Big Train's English Electric.

In an interview for Prog Magazine, John Lees mentions that the band plans to keep on touring and making new music. Good for us. 

North is highly recommended indeed!!!

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