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Artist: YEZDA URFA
Title: Boris
Format: CD
Label: Syn-Phonic
Country: USA
Price: $14.00
⿿Yezda Urfa was/is a Midwestern progressive rock outfit who recorded their debut album ⿿Boris⿝ in 1975 on a shoestring budget, and pressed a few hundred copies with the idea of getting a recording contract and some radio airplay. This effort failed on a massive level but, undeterred, the band pressed on. The album is a bizarre mixture of symphonic progressive, hardcore punk, and even a bit of bluegrass, maybe best compared to a high-speed collision between Yes, Gentle Giant, The Dead Kennedys with a dash maybe of Hüsker Düs ⿿Land Speed Record.⿝ Quirky enough for you? As an on-line reviewer noted: ⿿This music is unanchored in any conventional sense of rhythm, meter or melodic development. This is music that is wildly extreme in its form and style, often manic, but often successful as well. A low budget affair, but the quality of some of this music demands the listeners attention nonetheless. Boris was recorded at the end of what the band describes as their ⿿acoustic⿝ period, and this is what accounts for most of the difference of the material that is common to both of the bands releases. Boris And His Three Verses, Including Flow Guides Arent My Bag, 3, Almost 4, 6, Yea and To-Ta In The Moya all appear on both Yezda Urfa albums⿿on ⿿Boris⿝ they feature a great deal of acoustic guitar and piano in spots that were later re-scored for electric instrumentation. Another difference between the renditions of these numbers on ⿿Boris⿝ and the later versions is the lack of any vocal harmonies on the later efforts. Some of the best elements common to good symphonic progressive rock are, obviously, a blend of electric and acoustic instrumentation and vocal harmonies. These two elements make the earlier recordings on ⿿Boris far better than the later, somewhat slicker versions they recorded. There are other differences as well... keyboardist Phil Kimbrough tends to favor Moog, electric piano and clavinet on ⿿Boris,⿝ while the later recordings feature more synthesizers and organ... and vocalist Rick Rodenbaugh was in better voice on ⿿Boris⿝... and to my ears at least, the tempo of these tunes is ever so slightly slower, just enough to make a noticeable difference for the better.⿝ In essence, an exercise in mad genius and dexterity, from a band who never took themselves too seriously." - Syn-Phonic.

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