Most Helpful First | Newest First
21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Power and The Glory of Horslips,
The trouble (with a capital T)with buying a Horslips record is that it spoils you for anything else. After you've heard something like The Book of Invasions you'll never want to slip your XXXX(boyband/girlband) album in the dvd player again for risk of serious disappointment and the inevitible sense of superficiality. Yet despite the multi layered, intelligent Horslips songs the band never take themselves too seriously and the listening-to never feels over familiar. You get a celtic tale of ancicent Ireland, some cracking guitar riffs, mandolins, whistles, bodhrans and fiddles, some great vocals all with a modern slant that sits nicely today - yesterday or unbelievabley 1978 when it was recorded. You can buy it for your Mum, your Dad your teenage kids or better still just yourself - and everyone will be happy. Or you could buy it for me as my copy is getting a bit worn.
I have spent many hours trying to decide which track I like best here and have narrowed it down to King of Morning Queen of Day, Sideways to the Sun, Sword of Light, Warm Sweet Breath of Love, Drive the Cold Winter Away and Daybreak. I hope to narrow it down to two in about another three decades of listening.
I don't know why I am writing this because if you are on this page at all you probably KNOW how wonderful Horslips are and you don't need me telling you so I'll go away then.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Celtic folk rock at its best.,
It's unfortunate that Clannad had stolen all the audience for celtic folk rock music when this album came out, so it was largely overlooked by the record buying public of the day. Following on from The Tain, the Book of Invasions is a concept chronicling some of Ireland's more colourful folk legends, and stands well beyond the quality of anything else Horslips have previously released or were to release later on in their somewhat midguided pop-oriented career. Much of the album runs into a single cohesive piece, with some very melodic individual songs to spice it up - not to mention the awesome Sword of Light (you'll recognise the folksy dirge from songs by Thin Lizzy among others). This remaster comes in a mini-LP card sleeve and features some bonuses just to fill up the disc.
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars superb album a must have for celtic rock enthusiasts,
Easily Horslips best work! not a bad song on the Album the musicianship is superb the songwriting excellent it sounds a bit dated now in parts but if you like this sort of stuff then you cant go wrong! dont get the re-mastered version get the original if you can! This "concept" album ranks with anything that more well known bands like Jethro Tull, Pink Floyd & Yes were producing at the same time and its a crime that Horslips arn't better known!!
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars if you love celtic rock you cant fail to love this,
I have long been a massive fan of horslips and this is their best album Ive worn out 2 LPs and at least three cassettes of this album and Im on my 2nd CD. In parts it sounds a bit dated now but the musicianship & the songwriting still shine through if Horslips could remaster this with modern technology it would again be the masterpiece it once truly was! this remastered version has the irish single version of the opening track "daybreak" and it spoils the flow of the album if you can get a listen of the original Dick James Music version its far better! cmon horslips reunite for one last tour for all your die hard fans! and i agree with another reviewer listen to "Aliens" its an excellent follow up! for the more folky among you "The Tain" is well worth a listen to! and for you rockers "Belfast Gigs" side 2 will rock your socks off!! but i still love "Dancehall sweethearts" & "The unfortunate cup of tea" "a snakes farewell" and " the best years of my life" still make the hairs stand up on the back of my neck after 25 yrs! but the classic "King of the fairies" on either of the two live albums are fantastic and i'm not gay or owt! cheers
20 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Forgotten classic of Folk-Prog-Rock,
Horslips were a revolutionary Irish band of the '70s who wedded traditional Irish tunes and instrumentalisation to prog rock flourish and high concept themes. This album is their high water mark - before this, acoustic folk elements dominated, after this they descended into unremarkable AOR before disbanding to widespread indifference. In hindsight, though, they were every bit as significant as Steeleye or Fairport and without Horslips, there'd certainly be no Clannad, no Pogues, no Corrs (maybe no bad thing, there)...
As high concept albums go, you practically have to scrape this one off the ceiling. This is a musical adaptation of the 'Book of Invasions', a story cycle of Gaelic mythology, telling the stories of the prehistoric supernatural inhabitants of Ireland, the Tuatha De Danaan, and their eventual overthrow by the emerging human cultures of the Iron Age.
Deep? Hell, yeah. But the whole thing cracks along at a delightful pace, with haunting flute and fiddle melodies shifting gear into driving rock backbeats and anthemic choruses. Is it dated? Of course it's dated: it's a folk-rock concept album about Celtic mythology, ferchrissakes. The instrumental sections sag a little, perhaps, and even remastering leaves the percussion sounding as squishy and half-hearted as ever. You sort of wish Horslips would reform and drag Peter Gabriel or Enya into the studio to give this stuff the sort of tribal percussion and haunting vocalising that's par-for-the-course today. So it's a period piece, OK? - but none the worse for that.
The first half is where the crackling is. The recurring motif of "Daybreak" - half triumphalist, half poignant - weaves in and out of the outstanding "Trouble (with a Capital T)", vainglorious "Power & the Glory", lilting "The Rocks Remain" and the climactic "Sword of Light". Honestly, the album would be worth the purchase price for this sequence alone.
The second half is less arresting. The instrumental "Fantasia" is bookended by two charming (but, perhaps, slightly cheesy) ballads, "Warm Sweet Breath of Love" and "King of Morning, Queen of Day". This section feels like it goes on for slightly too long. But never mind, because "Sideways to the Sun" is a superb, haunting envoie as the faerie folk take their farewell from the mortal world. The thumping "Ride to Hell" closes off, almost (but not quite) matching the anthemic rock quality of the first half.
If you've bothered reading this far, you're clearly not the sort of person who's put off by Irish proggers making a concept album about faeries. In which case, buy "The Book of Invasions" right away. Then if you can track it down buy the follow-up Aliens because that's damned good too.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Horslips - Book of invasions,
This review is from: The Book Of Invasions (MP3 Download)
I had this album in the 70's and thought it was good then but have to say its got even better with age. The bonus live tracks show just how good they were live. Got to be one of the best bands to come out of Ireland
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars First Rate Music,
This album has been in my collection since 1976, and in my opinion sets the standard for Celtic Rock that many others have aspired to. I still play it on a regular basis. Glad to see this band have reformed for some gigs. Would love to see a UK tour announced; I'd be first in the queue.
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Powerful music, moving words - just fantastic.,
This CD represents the story of the early history of Ireland. I've waited years for this on CD - the music is powerful, the story gripping and the words are moving. I had the vinyl so long ago and wore out the tape I'd made. Horslips have a raw energy that comes across yet they're well disciplined musicians too. The technical quality of this version is high. I loved it !
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Celtic Prog Masterpiece,
This album is the pinnacle of achievement of this criminally underrated classic Irish Rock band. It's hard to comprehend why Horslips never quite made the big league. On this evidence, The Book of Invasions sits more than comfortably alongside other 'innovative rock' luminaries (I hesitate to use the much maligned label 'progressive') such as Jethro Tull, Yes and Genesis, and more than holds its own (and is nowhere near as flabby as some!)
From the opening bars of 'Daybreak' seguing into March into Trouble and 'Trouble with a capital T' through to the closing couplet of 'Drive the cold winter away/Ride to Hell' it's one almighty rollercoaster ride with not a dull moment. The Storyline is fascinating if you're into your ancient Celtic history/mythology, but even if not, this music cannot fail to move you. Within the broad label of 'Celtic Rock' (why do we need labels anyway), Horslips hammer out crunching hard rock, 'folk' it up with reels and jigs, and create a symphonic sound that 'Yes' and 'Deep Purple' would kill for. My personal favourites are 'Sword of light' with its clever juxtaposition of Rock Riffology and 'fiddly-dee-oh' jiggedy reels that Lizzy jealously aspire to; and the emotive cascade of notes of 'Kings of morning, Queens of day.'
Whether your thing is Hard Rock, trad Irish, Prog Rock or if you're just plain and simple, a lover of top class rock music, the 'Book of Invasions' is an essential purchase. (Do I get a royalty cheque from the band for such a glowing review?? - oh, and by the way, I'm of to see the reformed Horslips next week in Belfast's Oddyssey arena, and hoping for a generous slice of BOI in the show!!)
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars They're back !,
They're back ! the band that set the standards of the day have returned , my first gig was Horslips back in octuber 1978 and the concert is still engraved in my heart and my mind . I saw them during the tour to promote the book of invasions which , in my mind is still the greatest album ever produced by an Irish band . Ireland in general especially the north where I come from ( Belfast ) has a lot to thank Horslips for , they took us out of the dark ages of fear and confusion and offered us their musical magic at a time when for most of us in the north the world was coming to an end but , we survived and so have Horslips ! Sex , drugs and rock and folk , here we go again , Happy Days....!
Most Helpful First | Newest First