Procol Harum

Broken Barricades

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    8
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AllMusic Review by

Despite the departure of organist Matthew Fisher, Procol Harum survived, and this album is ample proof. Fisher was one of the prime architects of the Harum sound, and his work on such classics as "Shine on Brightly" and, of course, "Whiter Shade of Pale" underline that. Procol continued as a four-piece, and it was indeed a good thing that they decided not to replace Fisher. The sound of the band on this album is a bit sparser, but definitely not without dimension and dynamics. "Simple Sister," one of the finest Gary Brooker/Keith Reid compositions, is truly glorious, with Robin Trower's frightening lead guitar work juxtaposed nicely against a wonderful string arrangement. Several other tracks are first rate, including "Power Failure" and "Playmate of the Mouth." Along with Little Feat, Procol Harum was a great survivor among rock bands that lost a key member. The proof is in these grooves.

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