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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply brilliant!
"Once Again" is Barclay James Harvest's classic second album, recorded in 1971. It is a brilliant album, criminally underrated by the rock press but universally loved by their fans, irrespective of the era during which they actually came to know the band.

It contains some timeless classics, of course: there's the brilliant "Mocking Bird" - heard here in its...
Published on 24 Feb 2008 by alextorres

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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fails as a musical package.
It comes from a period where the music unfortunately sounds slightly dated. In addition, the lack of a lively opener and the fact that the album pretty much finishes at the track 'Mockingbird', (the songs after that aren't the best), means it probably fails as an overall album.

That said, if you haven't already heard the aforementioned 'Mockingbird', or even...
Published on 7 Dec 2011 by I. Rumens


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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply brilliant!, 24 Feb 2008
This review is from: Once Again (Audio CD)
"Once Again" is Barclay James Harvest's classic second album, recorded in 1971. It is a brilliant album, criminally underrated by the rock press but universally loved by their fans, irrespective of the era during which they actually came to know the band.

It contains some timeless classics, of course: there's the brilliant "Mocking Bird" - heard here in its original form with Robert Godfrey's vibrant orchestral arrangement - the song which was to become one of the band's best loved and an ever present in the live set (they're still performing it now!); the gorgeously atmospheric and peaceful "Galadriel", also performed with the orchestra and also still to be heard live today; and the powerful opener "She Said", which brings the album to life with its powerful guitar chords and catchy chorus before introducing a beautifully melodic recorder (yes, recorder!) solo, which leads into a stirring lead guitar solo from John Lees as the song once more builds to a crescendo in the finale. Stirring stuff!

The melodic writing is first class and is the thread that unites these songs together, whether they be rocky, like "Ball and Chain", tending towards folky like "Vanessa Simmons " and "Lady Loves" (which features Alan Parsons guesting on jews harp) or the orchestral numbers already mentioned.

The album also features a couple of "conscience" songs, something that would become a trademark of BJH with at least one such number featuring on most of their studio albums. On this album we have an "environmental" song, "Happy Old World", with its clever key change in the chorus, and "Song for Dying", a short but powerful anti-war song - both were to be recurring themes in BJH's long history.

It would be wrong not to mention Norman Smith's excellent production of the album - BJH always benefited from having a strong producer overseeing their work and the fact that this album of diverse songs sounds such a cohesive piece of work is surely down to Norman.

It's a splendid album - if you're new to the band then buy it without hesitation! The sound on this remastered recording is excellent. The many bonus tracks add a certain interest but should be listened to separately from the album itself as they don't really fit in with the heavenly experience of the original.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mellotronic quadraphonic!!!, 26 Nov 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Once Again (Audio CD)
If you are buying this version of "Once Again", please bear in mind that this Brimstone release is the QUADRAPHONIC version - i.e. this CD contains the quadraphonic mixes that were made of "Once Again". These mixes are quite different to the 1971 stereo mixes that appeared on the original album, and on the other CD versions you can buy.
The quad mixes were made without the involvement of the band, the producer Norman Smith or any of the original engineers - in those days the record label was all-powerful!!! They were released on an SQ-format quad LP in 1973, which is a highly collectable item today.
However, for lovers of this album, this is really a rare treat. Some of the quad mixes work incredibly well, and you can hear additional guitar, vocal, percussion, keyboard and orchestral parts that were mixed out of the stereo version.
The thunderous "Ball and Chain" seems to have about eight extra guitars soloing away, whilst the ethereal "Happy Old World" benefits enormously from the quad treatment.
"Galadriel" and "Mockingbird" fare rather less well, as the sentimental nature of Robert Godfrey's orchestral arrangements are thrown under a rather harsher spotlight - i.e. you can hear some of the over-fussy twiddly bits that were mixed out of the original album!!
For lovers of "Once Again" this album is wonderful fun; you can spend ages finding differences between the two versions.
For lovers of 70's nostalgia there is the added bonus of the original liner sleeve (explaining the SQ Quad system) reproduced inside.
Oh, and the album itself - well it's arguably the finest album that was ever released on the Harvest label, and most definitely the finest ever fusion of rock and classical music.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magnificently Melodic, 3 Jan 2011
By 
Sentinel (Essex) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Once Again (Audio CD)
The other reviews comprehensively cover the strengths and individual merits of tracks on this magnificent slice of early 70's progressive rock, so I'll only underline the doomed glory of 'She Said' with its spacey guitar sound, achingly beautiful recorder solo, and yearning lyric, and point to the velvet melodic wonder of 'Galadriel' and 'Vanessa Simmons', the haunting percussion on 'Mocking Bird', and the mellotron-dominated 'Song for Dying'. The edgy, bluesy 'Ball & Chain' in the only song that sits uneasily within this beautifully textured collection of tales of love lost & found, and I agree with the reviewer who found the extra tracks out of context here. If you want to investigate the world of 'prog rock', this is a very accessible and melodic place to begin: even the lyrics capture that essential bittersweet quality. What a steal at the price!
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34 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic B.J.H, 20 Mar 2002
By 
m.j.edu@btinternet.com (London, England. U.K.) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Once Again (Audio CD)
'Once again' is one of those albums like a fine wine, it get's better with age. Originally released in 1971 it still has the appeal that it had all those years ago. Right from the opener 'She said' to the closing 'Lady loves' this is classic progressive rock from a long underated band.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 4 July 2009
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G. J. Noakes "GJN" (Pontypridd, Wales) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Once Again (Audio CD)
If you like BJH then this is for you. Saw them perform this album live way back with the full orchestra. Superb vocals. Went straight out and bought it for if I remember correctly was 3 for the vinyl. Buy it you wont be dissapointed
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't smile just yet, chaps, 22 Sep 2005
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D. J. H. Thorn "davethorn13" (Hull, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Once Again (Audio CD)
Like Radiohead, BJH have made an art-form out of being miserable, but who cares when you've got songs as good as this. Maybe they sensed it too when they made this album. They sound as if they're almost enjoying themselves by the time they get to "Lady Loves". In the UK they've spent their career coming on like a minor league Pink Floyd, attempting mini symphonies rather than the realisation of vast concepts. I don't care whether they deserve better, I'm just pleased they made the right decision.
Of all the rock bands who've augmented their music with an orchestra, BJH, on this album at least, have used it the most effectively. But you still have to have good material and "Once Again" isn't short of highlights. The angst of "She Said" is memorably intense while much has already been written about the aching "Mockingbird". Credit is also due for the pure, irresistible bluesy rock of "Ball And Chain".
I've only heard a handful of BJH albums but I'd rather listen to them having a moan than the infinitely more successful Radiohead. Cheer up fellas, but not too much.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Once Again, a classic taste of symphonic rock, 28 Jan 2010
By 
Outastace "Outastace" (Manchester, England, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Once Again (Audio CD)
Once Again is probably the album that defines early Barclay James Harvest. Grand in its concept, lush in its orchestration, it marries quasi-classical arrangements with hard rock and unforgettable tunes. Standout tracks include the mighty She Said, the stately Mockingbird and the enchanting Galadriel, a song guaranteed to make your heart soar. For me, BJH didn't do anything quite as good as Once Again; it stands out as an unique testament to the musicality of John Lees, Stuart Wolstenholme, Les Holroyd and Mel Pritchard. While their later work continued on the themes laid down on Once Again, nothing quite matched up to its glory. For anyone wanting to see if the union of classical and rock can work, Once Again is the place to start.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Simply Sublime, 10 May 2014
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Mr. Peter Steward "petersteward" (Norwich, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Once Again (Audio CD)
There may not be such a thing as the perfect piece of music or the perfect album and of course it's all down to personal taste and opinion. For me this is simply sublime. It is simply by far and away my favourite album of all time as you will find if you follow my musical links throughout our pages. It is hard to put into words the importance of this album to me. It contains my favourite three BJH songs - Mocking Bird, She Said and Galadriel and has an overpowering beauty. It has an unthinkable beauty. I just have to listen to this album to be reduced to tears - and that doesn't happen lightly.

There has never been an album to equal this one for mood setting. It reminds me vividly of a part of my life long since gone. I love to play it late at night on headphones and with all the lights off. Then the swirling melodies remind me of great times. To me this is as perfect as rock music gets. Virtually ignored by the critics, it is a wonderful collection of prog rock that in my eyes will never be equalled or surpassed.
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4.0 out of 5 stars First band I ever saw, 6 Oct 2013
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This review is from: Once Again (Audio CD)
Nice proggy album full of nostalgia for me. I now have Mocking Bird as my ringtone but She Said would have done as well.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Once again, 17 April 2013
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A. Gordon "Cussler" (Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Once Again (Audio CD)
Take some time on to listen to this album it is a great listen and the musicianship and production is great
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Once Again
Once Again by Barclay James Harvest (Audio CD - 2002)
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