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Eyes of the Universe

Fact File

Released 1979
Label Polydor
Catalogue Number POLD 5029
Producer Barclay James Harvest and Martin Lawrence
Recorded when: July to September 1979
Recorded where: Strawberry Studios, Stockport

Track Listing

Track Title Time Written By Rating
1 Love On the Line . Les Holroyd 6.25
2 Alright Down Get Boogie (Muala Rusic) . John Lees 6.25
3 The Song (They Love to Sing) . Les Holroyd 6.50
4 Skin Flicks 6.48 John Lees 7.25
5 Sperratus . John Lees 6.75
6 Rock n Roll Lady . Les Holroyd 6.50
7 Capricorn . John LeesLes Holroyd 6.75
8 Play to the World . Les Holroyd 7.25
  Total .   53.50

Average Rating 6.61

Composer Songs Time Total Points Average
John Lees 4 . 27.00 6.75
Les Holroyd 4 . 26.50 6.62

Personal Review

I believe that when Woolly Wolstenholme left Barclay James Harvest they lost some of their aprkle and originality.

This is the first of what I would call the "formula albums" where John Lees and Les Holroyd share the songwriting in equal amounts.

A number of BJH fans have questioned whether this policy has been right. I prefer John's songs - it's a personal thing. They always seem to be more original and I believe that is illustrated with this album.

It does improve the more you hear it, but it is short of a vital undefinible ingredient. "Rock N Roll Lady", "The Song (They Love to Sing)", "Love on the Line" and "Alright Down Get Boogie" are very ordinary and the album is saved by the likes of Skin Flicks which seems to be two distinctive songs in one and "Play to the World" which for me is one of Les' best songs.

Many of the basic BJH ingredients are here - the expansive guitar work, the crashing keyboards but they are less original and more sterile.

Thankfully there was better to come.

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