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From Scratch


OSCURA FORMACION BRITANICA British progressive-rock CON SUPER AMONIAS Y GRADIOSAS GUITARRAS SU BUSCADO 1º LP, EN SU 1ª Y COMPLETA EDIC ORG USA PROMOCIONAL. CONTENIENE EL ENCARTE INTERIOR CON LOS TEXTOS..TAMBIEN FUNDA INTERIOR DEL LABEL EXC ESTADO Produced by Steve Rowlands, 1972's "From Scratch" featured an interesting blend of musical genres, frequently in the same composition. The lead off track 'Beautiful Scarlet' served as a perfect example of their dynamic approach, blending bits of top-40 pop with CSN&Y styled vocal harmonies (along with a wandering David Crosby-styled jazz lead guitar), and a modest progressive feel and structure (particularly the sci-fi inspired closing suite 'Sole Survivor'). The CSN&Y influences were even stronger on the rocker 'Do You Believe', 'I Will Be There' and the beautiful country-rock ballad 'Redman' (one of two Rare Bird covers). At the other end of the spectrum the power pop ''No Range' sounded like something Chinn and Chapman would be writing for The Sweet in a couple of years. While all of the original numbers were good, the standout track was one of two covers. Though clocking in at over seven minutes it was a little too long, their version of 'Liar' crushed the Argent original and though it wasn't as poppy as the Three Dog Night version, has always struck me as being the best version. Elsewhere while they were a little too fey for my tastes, even the ballads 'Garden' and 'Day In Day Out' (the latter sounding like something David Crosby would have written), were worth hearing for their gorgeous melodies and for the killer group harmonies. Most bands would sell their drummer to be able to come even close and every time I hear those harmonies I can see where Freddie Mercury and Queen took much of their inspiration from. All hyperbole aside, this is a lost 1970s classic. Having listened to it dozens of times over the years I'm at still at a complete loss to explain why it tanked. Charisma also tapped the LP for a single in the form of: