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Henry Fool: Men Singing

Album Review

Recalling the golden age of flares and gatefolds.

Less a supergroup than a conference of like-minded art-pop sophisticates, Henry Fool finds legendary Roxy Music guitarist Phil Manzanera joining forces with various members of No-Man, I Monster and Slow Electric for a pan-generational space jam.

The result is an experimental, free-flowing convergence of prog and jazz-rock that takes in folk, classical and post-rock along its instrumental journey. Just four tracks long, the highlight is opening 14-minuter Everyone In Sweden, which features all the players hitting a groove that could quite happily last forever. 

The ornate atmospherics are courtesy of Manzanera – who, lest we forget, has previous form in this field with his 1970s project Quiet Sun – but the unfashionable fusion of flute and spiky guitar also hits the right psych-folk notes, managing to feel both earth-born and futuristic. 

Beyond these Tolkien-like reflections, My Favourite Zombie Dream is a full Mellotron blow-out, while the closing Chic Hippo transcends time and space to send the listener on a magical carpet ride that’s one part 70s cop show soundtrack to two parts Indonesian sci-fi wig out. Totally potty.

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