Top positive review
29 people found this helpful
on 15 October 2009
Rick Wakeman had truly hit his stride in his solo career by 1975 with two multi million selling records and various bank busting tours of various countries with the full scale band, orchestra and choir which had been huge successes, but which had thrown Wakeman to the brink of bankruptcy.
'The Myths and Legends of King Arthur and The Knights of The Round Table' is the last major work that Wakeman released in the 1970's. The fact that it's also his finest hour as a solo artist is therefore very fitting.
Highlights include gorgeous ballad 'Guinevere', the rocky 'Lancelot and the Black Knight' with a top vocal performance from Ashley Holt, and the swirling prog masterpiece and signature tune, 'Merlin The Magician'.
The orchestral arrangements work perfectly with the rock music and the choral passages add atmosphere and drama. The album isn't needlessly broken up with narration all over the place like 'Journey To The Centre Of The Earth', allowing the songs to flow freely together and Rick Wakeman himself gives some career best keyboard performances. 'The Myths and Legends of King Arthur and The Knights Of The Round Table' also provided Rick Wakeman with another worldwide multi million selling smash, and his legendary Wembley show on ice.
The whole album is so wonderfully overblown, it's simply irresistable. It's a big fat slice of prog rock indulgence that remains the pinnacle of Wakeman's 1970s heyday. Anyone wanting to know why progressive rock was both loved and hated by so many need look no further than this album. I can understand why people would recoil at this kind of music, but I'm not ashamed to say that I bloody love it.
Absolutely 100% top shelf stuff.