Procol Harum
Shine on Brightly


4.0
excellent

Review

by NightmareCinema16 USER (36 Reviews)
February 4th, 2013 | 21 replies | 1,684 views


Release Date: 1968 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Procol Harum pioneers the prog and psychedelic genres even further in the right direction.

4 of 4 thought this review was well written

The 1960s was a decade in which the Great Britain was dominated by the British Beat Boom, a time which pop music had exploded beyond popularity and reason. This would continue to go on for about seven years while the cultural landscape of England would dramatically change. Then suddenly came 1967. This was the year that two new genres would take root. These genres, commonly known and prog and psychedelic rock, would start not just in the famous concept album, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, but also in a group by the name of Procol Harum. This group would launch a single that would strike the top of the British charts. That single was A Whiter Shade of Pale.

About a year later, Procol Harum would continue to shape the prog and psychedelic rock foundations when they came out with their second studio album, Shine On Brightly. This album would pioneer the work of longer prog rock pieces; songs that would finally hurdle 10 minutes and longer. It would also continue to reshape the way people look at psychedelic rock and each of the band members.

There is one particular song that dominates Shine On Brightly, which is In Held Twas In I. This song would become one of the first early prog rock songs to go beyond 10 minutes and spanned at about 17, a daring move for a band that first worked with baroque pop and other forms of rock. This song should be considered highly revolutionary, since it inspired and allowed other prog rock artists more freedom with their music. This meant it could be longer in time span. This also introduced classical music elements into the prog rock set, which created a more “profound” form of rock. Finally, this further evolved the concept album idea, by putting part of the story into each movement, or each song on the album. Take for example, In Held Twas In I starts with a highly enigmatic prologue:


“In the darkness of the night, only occasionally relieved by glimpses of Nirvana as seen through other people's windows, wallowing in a morass of self-despair made only more painful by the knowledge that all I am is of my own making ...

When everything around me, even the kitchen ceiling, has collapsed and crumbled without warning. And I am left, standing alive and well, looking up and wondering why and wherefore.

At a time like this, which exists maybe only for me, but is nonetheless real, if I can communicate, and in the telling and the baring of my soul anything is gained, even though the words which I use are pretentious and make you cringe with embarrassment, let me remind you of the pilgrim who asked for an audience with the Dalai Lama.

He was told he must first spend five years in contemplation. After the five years, he was ushered into the Dalai Lama's presence, who said, 'Well, my son, what do you wish to know?' So the pilgrim said, 'I wish to know the meaning of life, father.’

And the Dalai Lama smiled and said, 'Well my son, life is like a beanstalk, isn't it?”


These lines begin a massive journey from the most treacherous tribulations of torture to the end, where all mends in heaven, according to Gary Brooker. This would become one of many concepts used by many different progressive rock bands throughout the next four decades into present, thus becoming a celebrated tradition. This tradition still lasts to this very day.

It is also easy to notice the elements of psychedelic rock in Shine On Brightly. These elements are most noticeable through the lyrics written by Keith Reid, which are still very drug induced, eccentric, and rather catchy for the 1960s. They seem to most reflect and label the revolution that England had been going through, mostly drugs, government, and even the smallest details in life. This was a job that was well done by Procol Harum, leaving only a few minor flaws that hardly blur the picture.

In the end, what was most important in this album is the major development that went into the prog rock genre, which saw the most success. While the psychedelic rock genre had continued to work well, this would become a time in which prog would change the guard with both pop and psych rock and become the new popular trend of music, living the age of popularity for nearly a half a decade. Much of this was thanks to Procol Harum’s efforts.



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user ratings (38)
Chart.
4.1
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
NightmareCinema16
February 4th 2013



2016 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Will take suggestions. This really NEEDED a review.

KILL
February 4th 2013



71482 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

great ass album, this didnt have a review? crazy shit

Digging: Invisible - El jardin de los presentes

NightmareCinema16
February 4th 2013



2016 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

in held twas in i is the stuff.

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
February 4th 2013



20454 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Holy shit, major props for reviewing this. One of my favourite early prog albums. Procol Harum's best album imo.

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
February 4th 2013



20454 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Nice review too, pos'd. Was thinking about reviewing this myself but it seems you've saved me the time.

NightmareCinema16
February 4th 2013



2016 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Thanks, man. what surprised me is that this hadn't been reviewed before. You'd think someone would carry the job out.

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
February 5th 2013



20454 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Yeah, well I've been meaning to review it for over a year, just never got around to it.

SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
February 5th 2013



4415 Comments


I still haven't checked this out. I feel ashamed. POS'd.

Digging: Shabazz Palaces - Lese Majesty

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
February 5th 2013



20454 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

You'll love this, Paperback.

One of my favourite prog albums ever.

SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
February 5th 2013



4415 Comments


That's what everyone keeps telling me. I'm actually very excited to hear this now, especially since you've given it 4.5 and our tastes seem to be very similar.

ethixx
February 5th 2013



1170 Comments


so strange that i just randomly got this today without knowing or wanting to know anything about it and it pops up randomly on the front page

i click it (forgetting the album name entirely) and recognize the album cover
oh well, lol at least i know now that everyone thinks it's good

NightmareCinema16
February 5th 2013



2016 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

It is. :D

manosg
February 16th 2013



5961 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Jamming at the moment...

Digging: Saviour Machine - Saviour Machine I

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
February 16th 2013



20454 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Sweet.

manosg
February 16th 2013



5961 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"In Held 'Twas in I" is one of the least tiresome huge tracks I've listened to lately.

Nevertheless, the stand-out here is "Wish Me Well" for me. Robin Trower is one of the all-time greats and I tend to forget that some times. His playing is spot on.

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
February 16th 2013



20454 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Yeah Trower is an awesome guitarist. His playing on this album is particularly good.

NightmareCinema16
February 16th 2013



2016 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

What band is he from again?

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
February 17th 2013



20454 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

He's most famous for being in this band but he did play with a few lesser known bands beforehand. He's had quite a successful solo career too.

NightmareCinema16
February 17th 2013



2016 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Ahhhhhh, I see now.

KILL
October 20th 2013



71482 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

the chandelier is in full swing



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