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Renaissance|Scheherazade and Other Stories

Scheherazade and Other Stories

Renaissance

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This album was the group's magnum opus in the perception of many onlookers and fans, and it still plays well, though its flaws are more evident than they were at the time. The "Song of Scheherazade," really a suite for the group supported by the London Symphony Orchestra and a chorus, started with guitarist-composer Michael Dunford, who had a personal fascination with the medieval literary work Tales of 1,001 Arabian Nights, and was realized by Dunford and his composing partner Betty Thatcher, with bassist Jon Camp and pianist John Tout. The piece, really nine sections assembled together, was one of the more ambitious works to come out of the progressive rock boom -- it fits together nicely and does have some gorgeous passages and many lyrical, powerful sections, although it also seems slightly repetitive, overstaying its welcome somewhat; additionally, it never uses the orchestra quite as effectively as one senses it might have, for anything except embellishment. Less ambitious and more completely successful are "Ocean Gypsy," "The Vultures Fly High," and "Trip to the Fair" on side one, all relatively unpretentious pieces which feature extraordinary singing by Annie Haslam.
© Bruce Eder /TiVo

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Scheherazade and Other Stories

Renaissance

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1
Trip To The Fair
00:10:50

Renaissance, MainArtist - Copyright Conrol, MusicPublisher - Betty Thatcher, ComposerLyricist

(C) 1975 Cherry Red Records (P) 1975 Cherry Red Records

2
The Vultures Fly High
00:03:07

Renaissance, MainArtist - Copyright Conrol, MusicPublisher - Betty Thatcher, ComposerLyricist

(C) 1975 Cherry Red Records (P) 1975 Cherry Red Records

3
Ocean Gypsy
00:07:06

Renaissance, MainArtist - Copyright Conrol, MusicPublisher - Betty Thatcher, ComposerLyricist

(C) 1975 Cherry Red Records (P) 1975 Cherry Red Records

4
Fanfare
00:02:36

Renaissance, MainArtist - Copyright Conrol, MusicPublisher - Betty Thatcher, ComposerLyricist

(C) 1975 Cherry Red Records (P) 1975 Cherry Red Records

5
The Betrayal
00:04:55

Renaissance, MainArtist - Copyright Conrol, MusicPublisher - Betty Thatcher, ComposerLyricist

(C) 1975 Cherry Red Records (P) 1975 Cherry Red Records

6
The Sultan
00:02:44

Renaissance, MainArtist - Copyright Conrol, MusicPublisher - Betty Thatcher, ComposerLyricist

(C) 1975 Cherry Red Records (P) 1975 Cherry Red Records

7
Love Theme
00:02:30

Renaissance, MainArtist - Copyright Conrol, MusicPublisher - Betty Thatcher, ComposerLyricist

(C) 1975 Cherry Red Records (P) 1975 Cherry Red Records

8
The Young Prince and Princess
00:04:02

Renaissance, MainArtist - Copyright Conrol, MusicPublisher - Betty Thatcher, ComposerLyricist

(C) 1975 Cherry Red Records (P) 1975 Cherry Red Records

9
Festival Preparations
00:01:10

Renaissance, MainArtist - Copyright Conrol, MusicPublisher - Betty Thatcher, ComposerLyricist

(C) 1975 Cherry Red Records (P) 1975 Cherry Red Records

10
Fugue for the Sultan
00:02:11

Renaissance, MainArtist - Copyright Conrol, MusicPublisher - Betty Thatcher, ComposerLyricist

(C) 1975 Cherry Red Records (P) 1975 Cherry Red Records

11
The Festival
00:02:13

Renaissance, MainArtist - Copyright Conrol, MusicPublisher - Betty Thatcher, ComposerLyricist

(C) 1975 Cherry Red Records (P) 1975 Cherry Red Records

12
Finale
00:02:30

Renaissance, MainArtist - Betty Thatcher, ComposerLyricist - Copyrigh Control, MusicPublisher

(C) 1975 Cherry Red Records (P) 1975 Cherry Red Records

Album Description

This album was the group's magnum opus in the perception of many onlookers and fans, and it still plays well, though its flaws are more evident than they were at the time. The "Song of Scheherazade," really a suite for the group supported by the London Symphony Orchestra and a chorus, started with guitarist-composer Michael Dunford, who had a personal fascination with the medieval literary work Tales of 1,001 Arabian Nights, and was realized by Dunford and his composing partner Betty Thatcher, with bassist Jon Camp and pianist John Tout. The piece, really nine sections assembled together, was one of the more ambitious works to come out of the progressive rock boom -- it fits together nicely and does have some gorgeous passages and many lyrical, powerful sections, although it also seems slightly repetitive, overstaying its welcome somewhat; additionally, it never uses the orchestra quite as effectively as one senses it might have, for anything except embellishment. Less ambitious and more completely successful are "Ocean Gypsy," "The Vultures Fly High," and "Trip to the Fair" on side one, all relatively unpretentious pieces which feature extraordinary singing by Annie Haslam.
© Bruce Eder /TiVo

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