Henry Fool - s/t. 2001 Cyclops; 2013 KScope
Henry Fool - Men Singing. 2013 KScope (CD; LP)
The band's last activity was in 2014, which seems to be their pattern I'm afraid.
I suppose a Porcupine Tree comparison is unavoidable on Henry Fool's debut album. Especially considering the vocal tracks. That is to say, the more melancholic efforts from Porcupine Tree replete with mellotron. The instrumental parts range from lounge jazz to pure psychedelic bliss - and all points between. Radical in its own way - though not necessarily ground breaking. It's not until track 4 that vocals are even heard. There are 16 tracks in all. This is the same spirit that classic progressive rock had in the 1970's - making music just to make music. No end purpose in sight. Exciting concept if you think about it...
I didn't think we'd hear from this band again.... BUT I was wrong.... as is often the case. Fortunately....
12 years after their debut, Henry Fool finally comes back with their sophomore effort. The all-instrumental, ironically titled "Men Singing" is an atmospheric, lush, and overall relaxing affair. And very professionally produced. Almost too much so. What saves this from being a somewhat typically cold and clinical piece of modern rock, is the defiant use of analog equipment. While it may be trendy to pull out an M400 Mellotron nowadays, not too many bands out there are boldly going forward with Moog Taurus bass pedals and fuzz bass. Add to that a magnificently toned psychedelic guitar (from Phil Manzanera no less) and sax/flute, and you truly have something worth levitating to. I suppose if I were to critique, or in reality make a personal request, I would prefer a bit more of a "rough edge" to the overall product. Perhaps throw in one bluesy organ based jam to release the tension that is built. 4 stars / Gnosis 11 is probably a maximum grade for this kind of music. At least in my world.
Last update: July 24, 2016