Speed the Plough


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MARINA is a gorgeous album and the culmination of the three albums by Speed the Plough that preceded it. The band's lush and luxurious songs are given greater sonic breadth thanks to the addition of extra players. The layered guitars (acoustic and electric) and woodwinds are here joined by an eclectic mix of percussion instruments (congas, tablas, etc.). Cohorts the Feelies lend an undulating propulsiveness (as on "Said & Done") that is more restrained than it is on Speed the Plough's earlier efforts.

On MARINA, the hypnotic rhythms evoke other continents rather than the spirit of rock & roll. There are even two flute pieces that are played by Toni Paruta (who's also one of the band's vocalists). John Baumgartner's songs have matured in tandem with the band, as MARINA proves itself to be one of Speed the Plough's high points.