What does it sound like?:
As any fule kno, Procol’s Ninth is actually their eighth studio album, first released in August 1975. Although it’s been re-released before, this time around there are eight bonus tracks which include five getting their first release, and there are two live concerts taken from the same year.
The (very good) booklet that accompanies the boxset describes the album as “anomalous” and it’s an assessment I’d agree with. Opening with “Pandora’s Box”, it’s a strong start and proved a popular single release. It’s also left me with an earworm for the last week of “Spanish maaaainnnn”. Amongst the bonus tracks is a “raw” version, minus the marimba and brass which makes an interesting counterpoint. “Fools Gold” follows, almost as strong as the opening track, showcasing Mick Grabham’s guitar.
What follows is more of a mixed bag. “Taking The Time” feels a touch awkward – maybe it’s the diminished chord opening juxtaposed with some light boogie interspersed with a tea dance orchestra. Either way Brooker’s vocals stand out. “The Unquiet Zone” is up tempo, with lots of percussion but seems less polished than what’s gone before, with Grabham lending the whole thing a rocky edge. » Continue Reading.