Having only heard Horses from her oeuvre I therefore do not count myself as a fan of Patti Smith. Being a music fan who always appreciates the music before the lyrics may explain why I didn't appreciate Horses as much as most did and, consequently, why I always preferred the early albums of the New York scene's other punk pioneers, the Ramones, Television, Blondie and the Talking Heads. So it is all the more surprising that I actually like Banga so much. Ordinarily, I wouldn't even have listened to it but it was chosen as the album of the month in our local music club so listen to it I had to. Yes of course it is as lyrical and poetic as you'd expect (how good it is on these counts, I'll leave it to others to say) but it is the music that impresses this listener. The melodies are strong on the sung tracks and where her vocals are spoken, the musical accompaniment is spot on. A good example of the latter is on the longest track, the 10 minute plus Constantine's Dream. Normally, I would find such tracks boring and self indulgent but with a fine musical track to back it, it works well. Other stand out tracks for me are the semi sung/semi vocal opener, Amerigo, and the wonderfully folky Nine which, appropriately is the ninth track (do you see what they did there?). My admiration for Banga shows that you don't have to be a Patti Smith fan to like it and I recommend it to all who have reached the end of this review.