Cherry Five – “Cherry Five” – [Cinevox]
1975. Goblin before they were Goblin. I’m not sure if the personnel is exactly the same in both bands, but this is where popular Italian prog band Goblin got their start as a unit. This album, Cherry Five’s only record, is a fun listen that doesn’t deviate much from the 70’s progressive rock formula: good musicianship, complicated arrangements with jazzy touches, odd meters, songs about who knows what… The music is all over the place but mostly upbeat and it moves along pretty well. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t find this a bit too similar to other 70’s bands of this genre: early Yes for the meticulous vocal harmonies and Squire-like bass playing, ELP/The Nice for the aggressive keyboards, Genesis for the sweeping mellotrons and Hackett-like moments in the guitar (and one song even has a “Watcher of the Skies”-type riff)… maybe some Gentle Giant, some Focus… I like this mostly because it evokes a musical era I was a fan of, but I don’t think it’s particularly original.