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Song Of The Marching Children

Artist: Earth And Fire
Label: Polydor
Catalog#: 2925 003
Format: Vinyl
Country: United States
Released: 1971-10
Tracklist
A1 Carnaval Of The Animals 2:46
A2 Ebbtide 3:15
A3 Storm And Thunder 6:36
A4 In The Mountains 3:03
Ba Theme Of The Marching Children 2:20
Bb Opening Of The Seal 1:12
Bc Childhood 3:10
Bd Affliction 1:30
Be Damnation 2:52
Bf Purification 4:23
Bg The March 3:05
Credits

Bass Guitar - Hans Ziech
Design [Cover Design] - Erik van der Weijden
Drums, Percussion, Vocals - Ton van der Kleij
Engineer - Albert Kos
Engineer - Dick Bakker
Engineer - Erik Bakker
Engineer - Henri Bentzon
Engineer - Jan Schuurman
Engineer - John Sonneveld
Engineer - Pieter Nieboer
Lead Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, Electronics [Oscillator] - Chris Koerts
Lead Vocals - Jerney Kaagman
Lyrics By - Chris Koerts
Lyrics By - Gerard Koerts
Lyrics By - Hans Ziech
Music By - Chris Koerts
Music By - Gerard Koerts
Music By - Ton van der Kleij
Organ, Piano, Vibraphone, Mellotron, Synthesizer, Flute, Keyboards [Virginal], Vocals - Gerard Koerts
Producer - Fred Haayen
Producer - Jaap Eggermont

Notes

Released in a fold-out cover.

Strawberry Bricks Entry: 
In the 1970s, the Netherlands spawned groups ranging from the better-known Golden Earring, Focus and Kayak to the lesser-known Supersister and Alquin. On the latter end of the spectrum, Earth and Fire combined the talents of the brothers Koerts-Chris on guitar and Gerard on keyboards-with Hans Ziech on bass and female vocalist Jerney Kaagman. Their initial success was as a singles band; from the early-to-mid 70s, they consistently littered the Dutch record charts with their English-language hits. Their self-titled debut was typical of the era: psychedelic rock with some good arrangements, but not without the West Coast influence of Jefferson Airplane. Ton van der Kleij then replaced original drummer Cees Kalis; and after purchasing a Mellotron, the band moved in a musically progressive direction, releasing Song Of The Marching Children in 1971. “Carnaval of the Animals” (sic) is circus music, while “Ebbtide” has pop overtones. Gerard’s classically-inspired organ leads “Storm and Thunder,” yet “In the Mountains” tracks the same ground as Focus. It’s all good music, but nowhere near essential. The highlight, though, is the album’s side-long title track. The protracted introduction sweeps into the large symphonic refrain of “Opening the Seal;” the themes of “Childhood” and “Affliction” are sweetly melancholic, while the story-one of those biblical life-to-death tales-is dark. An acoustic guitar works the transition from “Damnation” to the long, dirge-like fade of “The March.” Kaagman’s voice doesn’t have the range of her progressive contemporaries, but she’s got a powerful delivery that’s well-suited for the music. Throughout the piece, each section is integrated into the next, and the track features a trove of Mellotron, synthesizers and other keyboards. It’s a unique twist on prog rock, but one that’s also symphonic and superbly executed by the band. Jaap Eggermont, of Golden Earring fame, produced the album, as well as the rest of Earth and Fire’s discography. The band’s next album-Atlantis, released in 1973-continued in the same progressive direction; though their later releases would take less risks as the band moved on to more commercial terrain.
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