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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An influence for Pete Townshend, Mike Ratledge, Karl Jenkins, 23 Oct 2003
By 
R. J. Heath "djaitch" (Loughborough, Leics, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Rainbow In Curved Air (Audio CD)
'Rainbow in Curved Air' is a fairly timeless piece of hyponotic cyclical music (as was called then), played on the organ by composer Terry Riley.
This music became better known later as minimalism, especially with the compositional sophistication of Philip Glass and it became accepted as "serious music". The first Rock Promenade concert is now just about remembered for Soft Machine's one hour set. However, the first part of the concert was devoted to the minimalist compositions of Riley, Britain's Tim Souster and others - one can only hope BBC Radio 3 still have the recording in their archives and may issue it one day - the list of keyboard players involved that night, may surprise many.
Riley's music has been a minor influence of rock and prog rock musicians. This is probably the album that inspired Pete Townshend (e.g. how did you think 'Baba Riley' came about), Soft Machine (listen to the opening of the Mike Ratledge's composition on "Third" and then several subsequent Machine albums)and I recently discovered Curved Air's Francis Monkman (check out the excellent and cheap, Decca box set "Legend Of The Mind"). In fact, Curved Air claimed to have taken their name from this album's title.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Somehow the best album in my whole collection...., 30 Dec 2006
This review is from: Rainbow In Curved Air (Audio CD)
I was 16 when I bought this from Virgin's first shop in London on my first trip to London. I had heard some of it on John Peel's programme on radio and was totally fascinated. Way more influential than is acknowledged (see earlier review for ideas), and melodic, hypnotic and still exciting. I followed most of the minimalists after this as well as Rock (and agree that Soft Machine 3rd is another under-rated album), but equally developed broader tastes in classical (Anything from Mahler and Bruckner to Henze), and rock and even 80's and 90's disco (and love the Pet Shop Boys) ... but THIS IS STILL MY ALL TIME FAVORITE ALBUM (sorry for the shouting.... :-) ) Please buy and listen ..... Steve
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ambient and daring, 21 Jan 2003
By 
Normann Aaboe Nielsen (Odder Denmark) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Rainbow In Curved Air (Audio CD)
I first heard "Rainbow" in a radiocast around 1973. Second time was 6 years later, at school. And third time was in 1987, also in a radiocast. Now I have bought the CD.
The morale of this small story is that the music is something that is not heard often, but that it for some shapes the future. It was the first electronic piece that I know that I have heard (excluding "popcorn") and it was a direct inspirator for listening in to some even more advanced pieces of music.
I call the music ambient - and that is true, as the music is flowing and intonating with a form but without a solid theme. "Rainbow" is not trance music, but more demanding.
I also call the music daring, referring to the point in time where it arrived. And then again - it was all so psykodelic then. Perhaps it was daring for us, not wanting to listen exclusively to Manfred Mann or Beatles. Well...
The music is classical electronica. It should be a must-listen.
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Rainbow In Curved Air
Rainbow In Curved Air by Terry Riley (Audio CD - 1994)
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