Procol Harum - Novum

Brand New Album Double 2LP 180 Gram Vinyl Records

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Novum is the twelfth studio album by English progressive rock band Procol Harum, released in April 2017 via Eagle Records.

Fifty years after "Whiter Shade Of Pale" introduced the concept of progressive rock, Procol Harum roll on, even with singer and pianist Gary Brooker as the only remaining original member. 

Novum is their first new studio album in 14 years. Their last, 2003's The Well's On Fire, marked the end of the decades-long writing partnership between Brooker and lyricist Keith Reid. Organist Matthew Fisher and drummer Mark Brzezicki left shortly thereafter. Brooker still had guitarist Geoff Whitehorn and bassist Matt Pegg. They recruited organist Josh Phillips and drummer Greg Dunn. This version has been together for a decade. 

Novum is a worthy 50th anniversary offering. This is the sound of a working band, not a tired reunion project. Brooker enlisted lyricist Pete Brown - known for his work with Cream and Graham Bond - and in an unusual move, brought the entire band into the songwriting process.

What's on offer here is the most rocking sound Procol Harum have delivered since Broken Barricades. There is only one overtly "classical" moment here, and it’s a send up - there's a direct quote from Pachelbel's Canon as a brief intro to the wonderful "Sunday Morning”.

Some truly perverse lyric moments are expertly crafted into well-composed songs (as you’d expect from Procol). Opener “I Told On You” is a forceful prog rocker about professional jealousy, bitterness, and retribution. Its bridge and chorus are classic Brooker (think Home and Grand Hotel). “Last Chance Motel” is a strange and ironic take on the murder ballad. It’s among the many vehicles here for Brooker’s voice, which remains as resonant and expressive as ever. There’s the hint of graininess in it, but his power remains undiminished by time.

There are also some atypical, straight-on political swipes at hyper-capitalism, too, as on the bluesy “Soldier” and the meld of mean rock and Baroque pop in “Businessman”. “Don’t Get Caught” commences as a ballad with Brooker’s trademark nearly sepulchral singing, but becomes an anthem offering sage advice for guilt-free living atop blazing guitars and swelling strings.

Novum is far better than anyone had any right to expect: It's energetic, hungry, and swaggering. That said, it retains the trademark class and musical sophistication that makes Procol Harum iconic. 

Check out the tracks: “I Told On You” ; "Sunday Morning" and “Last Chance Motel”. 

This double album 2LP record set is on 180 gram heavyweight vinyl, pressed in Europe.

(5034504166127)

Tracklisting:

 

 

Title

Time

A1

I Told On You

5:33

A2

Last Chance Motel

4:49

A3

Businessman

4:45

B1

Image Of The Beast

4:57

B2

Soldier

5:29

B3

Don’t Get Caught

5:13

C1

Can’t Say That

7:13

C2

Sunday Morning

5:29

D1

Neighbour

2:46

D2

The Only One

6:11

D3

Somewhen

3:47

SKU 5034504166127
Record Label Eagle Records
Label / Model # Universal
Catalogue Number EAGLP661
Country EU - Europe
Release Date (Year) 27 April 2017
Original Release Date (Year) 21 April 2017
Barcode # 5034504166127
Shipping Weight 0.5050kg
Shipping Width 0.008m
Shipping Height 0.314m
Shipping Length 0.314m
Shipping Cubic 0.000789m3
Type New
Format Limited Edition Double Album 2LP Records, 180 Gram Black Vinyl, First New Studio Album Since 2003, Celebrating 50 Years of Procol Harum
Vinyl Colour Black
Genre Progressive Rock
Genre Rock
Genre Classic Rock
Genre Symphonic Rock
Format VINYL LP

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