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THE CRAZY WORLD OF ARTHUR BROWN ‘Vampire Suite’ Track Records T1035 (2003)

Arthur Brown, he of flaming hair and the hit 'Fire', is back with a new album (his first in nearly 15 years). There is some top draw musicians backing him as well including Mark Brzezicki (Big Country/Fish) and Josh Philips (Midge Ure). Brown really is in a world of his own as the music veers from lounge music ('Vampire Club') to the creepy ballad so beloved of classic era Alice Cooper (' ). 'SAS' starts with a piano/spoken into and builds into a bizarre ballad, as I say he really is out there! There is even sweet soul music in the shape of 'Maybe My Soul', no musical style is taboo on here. 'In This Love' could have come from the late 60's with its swirling organ chords and strings backing and Brown reaching those high notes with ease. Quite what goes on in his mind is anyone's guess!

Good to see him back and an album that is not just Brown rehashing former glories. Not for everyone due to such the range of musical styles on the album but well worth a listen for the m ore adventurous souls.



Review by Jason Ritchie

***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly

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