An album that changed the face of music forever.
"Spirit Of Eden occupies a space outside musical genres, an area between pop and jazz that is painted vividly with the colours and textures of blues, ambient, classical, rock... The first half of the record consists of a suite of three tracks which flow organically between each other, The Rainbow starting inauspiciously with subdued strings and the rumour of trumpets, the awakening of the record heralded by squalls of over-amped harmonica and electric guitar, Friese-Green in thrall to Lamonte Young, Cage and Stockhausen while Hollis invokes his fascination with Robert Johnson and John Lee Hooker. But where Johnson’s soul was sold, Hollis finds his saved amid the fall and rise, the surging tide. The passages of neo-classical ambience belie the loose and buried structure; there are refrains here, musical and almost lyrical, muffled talk of the lawyer’s song, the jailer’s song, the unending trial, before whispered silence drifts us into Eden. Time and again the battle between temptation and redemption ushers us between chaos and bliss, the storm gathering, those gentle passages between the fray opening up the clouds to reveal regions of crystal blue away from the shredding guitar that wails with the dependency and need that hold us back from salvation.
The final section of the opening triptych washes in on cowed church organ, ruminative, reverent, before the implosion that is foreseen but irresistible, Hollis a rage against resignation, a cry of “that ain’t me babe” again and again before a confession of escaped weakness, a refusal to go under; “I’m just content to relax / than drown within myself”, anything but content, turning the ire to aid salvation. All the while the guitar is ferocity, harsh plains of bass and the biting wind of harmonica overset with clattering, broiling drums, percussive white-horses eroding the self to the point of catharsis and sublimation, unstoppable even when the rest has fallen by the wayside, Web and Harris together a source of elemental rhythm, powerful, refined, sometimes elusive and always measured to perfection." - Nick Southall