Marvin Chassman kindly sends us this review from the June 1977 issue of Stereo Review. The (8) and (C) in the price list are actually an "8" and "C" in a circle, presumably to indicate 8 track and cassette.
PROCOL HARUM:Something Magic
Procol Harum (vocals and instrumentals). Something Magic; Skating on Thin Ice; The Mark of the Claw; Wizard Man; Strangers in Space; The Worm and the Tree. Chrysalis CHR-1130 $6.98, (8) M8C-1130 $7.97, (C) M5C-1130 $7.97.
Performance: Something tragic
Although Procol Harum did have a surprise English hit single last year, their American fortunes have been plummeting steadily since Grand Hotel, and, since America is where the money is, the band couldn't afford to stiff again in the Colonies. Even Keith Reid, the non-performing lyricist of the group. was quoted recently as regarding this newest album as something of a make-it-or-break-it affair.
The result, unfortunately, is probably the worst album Procol has ever made. The ambition comes across as grandiose self-parody. The Worm and the Tree, a turgid epic that occupies the whole of side two, is the giveaway. It is a blatant attempt to re-create the impact of the long conceptual pieces Procol's reputation rested on, such as In Held 'Twas in I. But Reid's new lyrics lack even an iota of his usual wit and subtlety. In short, Something Magic is an artistic disaster.
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