The Enid
Salome


3.5
great

Review

by Aaron W. STAFF
December 22nd, 2014 | 20 replies


Release Date: 1986 | Tracklist

Review Summary: This child of time shall weep no more...

Shortly after the tour for the spiritually-themed double album ”The Spell”, Robert John Godfrey and Stephen Stewart returned to the studio once more to record The Enid’s seventh album, ”Salome”. Like the several albums before it, ”Salome” was a concept album based on the biblical tale of Salome, the temptress, and John the Baptist, a holy man. The release of the album led to astounding controversy and protest against the band. “We’ve managed to offend both feminists and the God squad” Godfrey doted at the time of the album’s release. The controversy did little to ebb the support of the album and its subsequent tour, which included an ambitious ballet scored to the album, and was performed at the annual Hammersmith show that year to great success. If anything, the band was at its peak in popularity.

Despite the history of Salome and John the Baptist, ”Salome” doesn’t stray too far from its source material, essentially making the album a contemporary interpretation of the tryst between the lovers. The title track, sung by guitarist Stephen Stewart, gives a new-wavish feel to the band’s usual sound – oddly dominant in synthesizers, and lacking in guitars, which are replaced with light percussion and lush backing vocals – a major departure from The Enid of past times. The track story-wise, is a lamentation by John towards the titular character proclaiming of how “your love is killing me” and how “you and I shall bow before the mystery of suffering”. Salome is shown to have seduced John, and his reaction shows great despair over what could happen to him. ”Sheets of Blue” and ”Dance Music” showcase the duo’s individual skill while telling the story of Salome. While the former is a guitar-oriented effort, an interlude of sorts to the story of Salome – mostly written by Godfrey; the latter is a three-part epic depicting the imprisonment of John, his beheading, and the aftermath of his execution. The album doesn’t fully explain just how John got into this fatal event, one must read the writing that this album is fully based on: the New Testament’s interpretation of the dance Salome gave for her step-father King Herod. At this event, Herod promised Salome anything she wanted if she danced for him. Her mother, Herodias, convinced the girl to ask for John’s head. The reason for this being that Herodias held great hatred for John ever since he stated that Herodias’ marriage was unlawful. Now, the point where all that information is placed in the story that The Enid put to tape is unfortunately confusing. ”Dance Music” showcases Godfrey’s compositional skill yet again, showing efficiency on his array of keyboards and synthesizers. The final part, ”Flames of Power” is a mournful, but romantic piece that goes up there with the other great Godfrey compositions such as ”Chaldean Crossing” and ”The Lovers” – the use of Godfrey’s falsetto range is put to the test, and adds an air of finality to the piece.

For all it did right, the album had quite a few flaws, mostly in its sound. It can be said the band took a steep right turn in sound, and took to “updating” their sound – making the album sound dated and a capsule of the decade long gone. Another criticism is the track lengths. Containing only three tracks, all of which go over ten minutes in length, and contain some repetition that can be exhausting to some. ”Salome” is a natural – albeit, odd – progression for the band known to stray from being labelled “progressive rock” exclusively.

Following the release of the album, the band went on tour – some shows featuring the aforementioned ballet. Considered the band’s most ambitious tour (up until the upcoming ”The Bridge” tour in 2015) yet, the tour was a smash hit. Trouble, unfortunately was waiting to rear its face to greet Godfrey and Stewart yet again.

To be continued…



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user ratings (17)
3.8
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
Frippertronics
Staff Reviewer
December 22nd 2014


19206 Comments

Album Rating: 3.6

The Enid on ”Salome” are:



Robert John Godfrey – Keyboards/Vocals (lead on ”Dance Music”)

Stephen Stewart – Guitar/Vocals (lead on ”O Salome”)

Dave Storey – Drums/Percussion (on ”O Salome” and ”Dance Music”)

Chris North – Drums/Percussion (on ”Sheets of Blue”)



"O Salome": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xHjpmVVaS9Y



The album: http://goo.gl/oIppJh





BMDrummer
December 22nd 2014


14646 Comments


oh yes

MeatSalad
December 22nd 2014


17457 Comments


Discog finished when

Frippertronics
Staff Reviewer
December 22nd 2014


19206 Comments

Album Rating: 3.6

soon. I plan on writing the review for The Seed and the Sower this coming week. The best album deserves a lengthy and magnificent review. Plus it's the final album with Stephen Stewart. After that, I plan on reviewing the two Come September EPs, the band technically being the next incarnation (though disowned by RJG as being an attempt at recapturing his youth).



Hoping SWTWC will get past the prelims.

MeatSalad
December 22nd 2014


17457 Comments


Ye well depends on what it gets put up against, friday generally seems to find one similarity between two albums and goes with it

Frippertronics
Staff Reviewer
December 22nd 2014


19206 Comments

Album Rating: 3.6

i'm well prepared to get BTFO tbh

MeatSalad
December 22nd 2014


17457 Comments


Ye its all good same thing happened to me the last time i did one of these, khan got destroyed by i think los jaivas which ended up winning the whole thing

Frippertronics
Staff Reviewer
December 22nd 2014


19206 Comments

Album Rating: 3.6

yeah, i think that's what happened. I was out of state and w/o internet most of the time when the last one happened.

BMDrummer
December 22nd 2014


14646 Comments


more people should care about this band tbh

Frippertronics
Staff Reviewer
December 22nd 2014


19206 Comments

Album Rating: 3.6

Since I finally took care of my bank account and got a paypal set up, I may sign up for their fan club soon. Gets me the whole back catalogue, discounts and a free DVD. woot.



ordered a signed copy of SWTWC also, so that's cool

Frippertronics
Staff Reviewer
December 22nd 2014


19206 Comments

Album Rating: 3.6

All the care they need

Friday13th
December 22nd 2014


7026 Comments


pos'd sounds really interesting

Digging: Stevie Wonder - Fulfillingness' First Finale

Frippertronics
Staff Reviewer
December 22nd 2014


19206 Comments

Album Rating: 3.6

yeah, though if you download it from torrents or any p2p host, there will be 3-5 tracks, depending on what version you get. The first CD had the revised version of Sheets of Blue, while some later versions included the Enid/Come September version of Salome from the single from 1990. These tracks were titled as The Change and Flames of Power on some downloads (at least from my experience) for no reason. The revised version of Sheets is great, and the remake of Salome is a guilty pleasure. It's absolute synthpop, but I love it.

menawati
December 22nd 2014


16587 Comments


nice, pos, still need to explore this lot more

SharkTooth
December 22nd 2014


14137 Comments


cool review mate, waiting for the match with SWTWC

Frippertronics
Staff Reviewer
December 22nd 2014


19206 Comments

Album Rating: 3.6

ready to lose

MrSirLordGentleman
December 22nd 2014


12878 Comments


Hey, I thought Los Jaivas wouldn't make it through the 1st round and they ended up winning in the last contest so don't be a pussy m8

Frippertronics
Staff Reviewer
December 22nd 2014


19206 Comments

Album Rating: 3.6

ain't bein a puss mane, just fully expecting the possible



tbh I was going to choose Invicta, but this one felt more appropriate.

Jethro42
December 23rd 2014


15969 Comments


Nicely done, fripp.

Frippertronics
Staff Reviewer
April 4th 2016


19206 Comments

Album Rating: 3.6

title track never gets old, it's got the right mix of dated 80s pop with a tinge of progressive tendencies



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