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Chris De Burgh - Crusader (1993) Retail CD
Prog-Rock/ Art Rock
Once, there was a troubadour whose songs told stories about Country Churchyards and houses with Satin Green Shutters, about Lonesome Cowboys, Spacemen and Strippers, and about the devil cheating the Lord in a game of chess for the souls of humanity played on a Spanish Train. In those years, that troubadour's songs were simple, straightforward and enchanting, both musically and lyrically, and he published albums fittingly entitled "Far Beyond These Castle Walls," "Spanish Train and Other Stories" and "At the End of a Perfect Day."Then, he was discovered. And while (initially) his lyrics at leastmore… maintained their poignancy (see "The Getaway"), his music suddenly joined the flood waves of overproduced pop. But just before that point, in 1979, he released what many to this day consider his masterpiece; the album most pointedly embodying the tradition in which, if interviews he gave at the time were to be believed, he saw himself. Supported by the better part Alan Parson's "Project" (minus Parsons himself and Eric Woolfson) - guitarist Ian Bairnson, bassist David Paton, drummer Stuart Elliott and keyboardists Mike Moran and Andrew Powell, the latter of whom also served as the album's producer and conductor - he put together a collection of 12 songs in turn seducing, stirring and soothing the listener's soul. There are soft songs of love and loss like "I Had the Love in My Eyes," "Something Else Again," "It's Such a Long Way Home" and "Quiet Moments." There is the heartrending fairy tale of the "Girl With April in Her Eyes." There is De Burgh's bow to the era's "save the earth" movement, the rallying cry of "Just in Time". There is the sequel to the ghastly game of chess in "Spanish Train" (to which the song's lyrics expressly make reference), the dramatic story of "The Devil's Eye" gazing back at you from your TV screen. And there is a troubadour's look at "Old-Fashioned People" wishing to be carried back to the times and places that they knew.But the album's piece de resistance is its title track, an (especially considering the time of its release) epic, nine-minute long tale retelling the story of Richard the Lionheart's crusade; beginning quietly but rising to dramatic heights as the enemies face each other over Jerusalem, and yet, ending on a quiet, pensive note. True, the song's lyrics reflect enormous bias and are, at the very least, historically debatable; and the mere fact that the story is told from a crusader's point of view doesn't do anything to change this, for those who participated in the crusades knew better than to underestimate Saladin or put him down like this - the version we're getting here is the propaganda spread throughout Christian Europe in support of the campaign to "free" Jerusalem. But ultimately, I don't think this part of the song represents the point that Chris De Burgh wants to make. Rather, the song's most important lines are those of the last, reflective verses, which are well worth considering, particularly these days:"What do I do now?" said the Wise man to the Fool, "I have spent my whole life searching, to find the Golden Rule, Though centuries have disappeared, the memory still remains, Of those enemies together, could it be that way again?" Then the Fool said "Oh you Wise men, you really make me laugh, With your talk of vast persuasion and searching through the past, There is only greed and evil in the men who fight today, The song of the Crusader has long since gone away ..."The album's last song, "You and Me," is a short, gentle farewell: "The time has come for me to take my bows and leave the stage," De Burgh sings, and promises to return and again take his audience "through the ancient halls and stories of the past, and the many ways of loving." Well, return he certainly did, but would that he had remembered the rest of his promise as well! Alas, that was not to be the case. But even for those of us who think he later sold out, there are still his first four albums - and particularly this one - to turn to for enchantment, comfort, and exceptional storytelling ...
|2||I Had The Love In My Eyes|
|3||Something Else Again|
|4||Girl With April In Her Eyes|
|5||Just In Time|
|7||It's Such A Long Way Home|
|8||Old Fashioned People|
|11||You And Me|
- Chris De Burgh - Crusader (1993) Retail CD
- 805 x 800 px
- 203 KB
- 1016 (0 today)
- 10/04/07 by allcdcovers
- Quality Rating:
Rated 3.5 of 5 (2 votes). Click CDs to vote!