MENU
Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography
Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography

MORGAN

Symphonic Prog • United Kingdom


From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Morgan picture
Morgan biography
MORGAN was formed in the early '70s by two musicians (Morgan Fisher and Maurice Bacon) who had played in the late sixties British pop group The Soul Survivors (a pretty good semi-pro soul band) that became The Love Affair (the hit pop band of "Everlasting Love" fame, whose singer Steve Ellis left when he realised that the soul had gone and pop had taken over) and later L.A. (the prog version of the previous band, with a new singer). L.A. failed in terms of sales because their largely pop audience couldn't understand what they were up to, playing in 5/4 and so on. It was time for a new band, MORGAN: the line-up was formed by keyboardist Morgan Fisher, drummer Maurice Bacon and bassist Bob Sapsed. Singer Tim Staffel, who would put lyrics to Fisher's music, joined from Smile, the pre-Queen outfit of Brian May and Roger Taylor. Ex King Crimson's Ian McDonald even jammed with them while they were auditioning for their fourth member, although as it turned out he didn't join up. They released their debut album in 1972 called "Nova Solis", recorded in RCA Studios in Rome, one of the best that could be found at the time, with every type of keyboard and percussion instrument imaginable. The music in "Nova Solis" is typical '70s progressive rock, with the predominant sound of Fisher's keyboards (Hammond-Organ, Moog, VCS-3 synthesizer, mellotron, electric piano, piano) and a strong rhythmic section. A second record, initially titled "Brown Out", was recorded in 1973, and is a mix of crazed, hysterical-toned synthesizer solos, winding high operatic vocals, pretentious pseudo-classical keyboard art-rock ā la ELP, and artly, experimental song structures in the mold of more serious artists like King Crimson or Gentle Giant.

The "Brown Out" LP was not released after it was recorded, in part because the band pissed off RCA executives by spreading their cheeks at the photo shoot for the album cover. It was released only by Passport Records (USA) in 1977 (titled "Brown Out") and two years later by Cherry Red Records (UK) with a new title: "The Sleeper Wakes" which is also the same title as the Angel Air 1999 CD reissue.

During their stay in Rome, Morgan Fisher also found time to record a solo album in-between sessions for the MORGAN LP. The working title of his solo album was "Morgan Fisher's Hand Job", but RCA cancelled the contract with the band and this album was released only in 1984 by Strike Back Records with a different title: "Ivories". Musically this a...
read more

Morgan official website

MORGAN MP3, Free Download (music stream)


Open extended player in a new pop-up window | Random Playlist (50) | How to submit new MP3s
No MP3/Stream available for this artist.
Collaborate with Progarchives.com, learn how to submit new MP3s.

MORGAN forum topics / tours, shows & news


MORGAN forum topics Create a topic now
MORGAN tours, shows & news Post an entries now

MORGAN Videos (YouTube and more)


Showing only random 3 | Search and add more videos to MORGAN

Buy MORGAN Music


Right Now on Ebay (logo)
cd-album, Morgan Page - In The Air, 13 Tracks USD $6.03 Buy It Now
DERRICK MORGAN - SUNDAY , MONDAY / BE STILL - BLUE BEAT RECORDS 45BB76 USD $13.37 Buy It Now
Melissa Morgan - Good Love UK Capitol Vinyl Album LP Record USD $6.31 Buy It Now
Lol Coxhill, Morgan Fisher - Slow Music CD 2012 NEW SEALED Caravan Procol Harum USD $4.45 Buy It Now 12m 54s
VEETDHARM/MORGAN FISHER-Look At Life Japan LP w/OBI USD $24.99 Buy It Now 24m 37s
LORRIE MORGAN-Show Me How CD-Brand New-Still Sealed USD $9.05 Buy It Now 24m 45s
LAZA MORGAN-ONE BY ONE-JAPAN CD BONUS TRACK D95 USD $19.50 Buy It Now 34m 40s
Lee Morgan - Candy - Blue Note Limited Edition #'d New & Sealed LP Vinyl Record USD $99.99 Buy It Now 43m 47s
Lee Morgan Candy Blue Note BLP-1590 Japan Pressing Jazz LP Vinyl Record USD $69.99 Buy It Now 49m 2s
Derrick Morgan - Ska, Vol. 1 (2003) CD - New - Mint - Sealed RRTCD 06 USD $12.47 Buy It Now 50m 27s
Lee Morgan Charisma 1966 Blue Note Stereo LP BST 84312 USD $84.99 Buy It Now 51m 47s
JESS MORGAN Edison Gloriette 2016 UK 11-trk promo CD USD $3.81 Buy It Now 56m 48s
Greast Songs from the Great Shows of the Century Volume 2 Jane Morgan Vinyl Re USD $25.41 Buy It Now 1h 5m
GREEDY GAL-DERRICK MORGAN.VINYL.7"45RPM.PYRAMID.VGC+ USD $50.94 Buy It Now 1h 12m
Russ Morgan & His Orch My Best To You Vintage 78 Rpm Gramophone Record USD $8.92 Buy It Now 1h 32m
JAMIE J. MORGAN / WALK ON THE WILD SIDE 1990 EPIC AUSTRALIA USD $3.79 Buy It Now 1h 44m
JOSHUA soundtrack CD pete orta THIRD DAY wes king CINDY MORGAN michael w smith USD $14.99 Buy It Now 1h 55m
WBS/WPS 10779-10788 Russ Morgan/Ray Bloch 16" Transcription USD $12.95 Buy It Now 1h 55m
16" WPS RUSS MORGAN & JIMMY WAKELY RED VINYL TRANSCRIPTION USD $12.95 Buy It Now 1h 55m
MORGAN, Derrick/DESMOND DEKKER/BEVERLEY'S ALL STARS - Do The Beng Beng - 7" USD $12.62 Buy It Now 2h 37m
DJ Robert W. Morgan Top 40 Radio Show- KHJ Los Angeles 12/30/1972 USD $9.00 [0 bids]
USD $11.70 Buy It Now
2h 44m
Tex Morgan Orchestra The Second Solid Album of Glenn Miller Coronet CXS-172 LP USD $9.99 Buy It Now 2h 44m
DAVID MORGAN TRIO - Hands of Time - CD USD $35.95 Buy It Now 3h 14m
Harry James on 78 rpm Columbia 37955: White Christmas (v.r. Marion Morgan) USD $15.99 Buy It Now 3h 19m
JAMIE J MORGAN - Why - 7" single USD $2.01 Buy It Now 3h 49m
John Wesley Coleman & Morgan Coy "Nightmare On Silly Street" On Monofonus. MF041 USD $9.98 Buy It Now 3h 50m
Lorrie Morgan : Something in Red CD (2002) USD $10.00 Buy It Now 4h 3m
Here Come The Kings - Morgan Heritage (CD Used Very Good) USD $8.03 Buy It Now 4h 7m
JAYE P. MORGAN SLOW AND EASY JAPAN E3774 USD $39.00 Buy It Now 4h 14m
JACK MORGAN Memories In The Morgan Manner 8-Track Tape AUTOGRAPHED USD $6.00 Buy It Now 4h 15m
JACK MORGAN Reflections Of Dad 8-Track Tape AUTOGRAPHED USD $6.00 Buy It Now 4h 16m
Shakin' Things Up Morgan, Lorrie Audio CD USD $3.99 Buy It Now 4h 20m
Shakin Things Up 2000 by Morgan, Lorrie - Disc Only No Case USD $3.03 Buy It Now 4h 21m
TANYA MORGAN-THE BRIDGE EP CD NEW USD $10.34 Buy It Now 4h 23m
MORGAN,TANYA-BROOKLYNATI (EX) CD NEW USD $11.80 Buy It Now 4h 24m
JANE MORGAN THE DAY THE RAINS CAME/LE JOUR OU..7in45rpm single1958 London triEX USD $2.80 Buy It Now 4h 46m
GEIST, Morgan - Megaprojects Two - Vinyl (12") USD $16.02 Buy It Now 4h 51m
LORRIE MORGAN - MY HEART - CD - NEW - FREE SHIPPING !!! USD $7.95 Buy It Now 4h 57m
Ezeke Lozano Morgan - Paz En El Mundo - Peace In The World - 12 Inch Vinyl - Lis USD $10.18 Buy It Now 4h 59m
Morgan & Ac Burrell - Trippin - 12 Inch Vinyl - Listen USD $3.81 Buy It Now 4h 59m
DOG FACE SOLDIER Russ Morgan DECCA FROM HELL & BACK Jukebox 78 rpm Record USD $25.00 Buy It Now 5h 12m
Radio Da Da/The Teenage Tapes - Mats/Morgan (CD Used Very Good) USD $17.27 Buy It Now 5h 13m
MORGAN FISHER-MINITURES-JAPAN MINI-LP CD F20 USD $23.99 Buy It Now 5h 25m
Beautiful Bird by Cindy Morgan cd 2008 USD $4.99 Buy It Now 5h 32m
George Morgan "Sounds of GoodbyeThe Ballad of The Grand Ole Opry" 45 USD $4.95 Buy It Now 5h 32m
Debelah Morgan It's Not Over Japan CD w/obi new jack swing POCT-1120 USD $9.99 Buy It Now 5h 43m
CRAIG MORGAN CRAIG MORGAN , CD, USA USD $24.00 Buy It Now 5h 46m
LEE MORGAN - Standards - CD ** Brand New ** USD $40.49 Buy It Now 5h 49m
LEE MORGAN - Standards - CD ** Very Good condition ** USD $18.95 Buy It Now 5h 53m
ROCKET MORGAN - LOUISIANA ROCKERS NEW CD USD $23.46 Buy It Now 5h 54m
Morgan Delt USD $10.79 Buy It Now 5h 57m
See Autumn Lee Morgan~RARE 1980 Hard Bop Jazz~Recorded 1970s~FAST SHIPPING!!! USD $28.01 Buy It Now 6h 6m
The Rumproller Lee Morgan~RARE 1986 Blue Note PROMO~1965 Hard Bop Jazz~FAST SHIP USD $59.46 Buy It Now 6h 11m
Lorrie Morgan Sixwire Rhonda Vincent Mindy McCready Kenny Chesney 2002 DJ CD USD $5.99 Buy It Now 6h 12m
MORGAN PAGE - In The Air - USA CD Album - Not Sealed - **NEW** USD $5.68 Buy It Now 6h 16m
Cornbread Lee Morgan~1988 Blue Note~1967 Hard Bop~Herbie Hancock~Hank Mobley USD $27.16 Buy It Now 6h 18m
THE TEDDY BEARS*HELEN MORGAN*ROSEMARY CLOONEY*PATTI PAGE.. (VINYL LP)*1113 USD $8.85 Buy It Now 6h 34m
RAY MORGAN, LONG AND WINDING ROAD (LENNON/McCARTNEY), 1970 B&C 128, MINT- USD $7.63 Buy It Now 6h 37m
GEORGE MORGAN Lot of 4 LPs #6563 USD $32.00 Buy It Now 6h 39m
Lorrie Morgan & Keith Whitley 'Til A Tear Becomes A Rose 7" 45 Rpm Record USD $0.99 [0 bids]
USD $2.00 Buy It Now
6h 42m
Morgan's Heritage/Jack Radics 45 People's Cry/Time For Love BRICK WALL USD $15.00 Buy It Now 6h 49m
Morgan Heritage 45 Music Of The Century PENTHOUSE RECORDS USD $20.00 Buy It Now 6h 49m
George Morgan - Candy Kisses (1967 Starday Records SLP 400) Used Vinyl LP USD $14.00 Buy It Now 6h 57m
New: Mike Morgan and the Crawl Crawl: The Road Audio CD USD $6.73 Buy It Now 7h 2m
Something in Red by Lorrie Morgan (CD, 1991) - Disc Only!!!! USD $4.39 Buy It Now 7h 4m
Lee Morgan - Sidewinder [New Vinyl] 180 Gram USD $49.21 Buy It Now 7h 10m
HAROLD MABERN(SUPER RARE-TEST PRESSING)-Greasy Kid Stuff! W/LEE MORGAN-EXC.TOPS* USD $265.00 Buy It Now 7h 22m
Greatest Hits by Lorrie Morgan (Cassette, Jun-1995) USD $4.95 Buy It Now 7h 23m
Greatest Hits by Craig Morgan (CD, Sep-2008, Broken Bow) USD $16.01 Buy It Now 7h 23m
Meli'sa Morgan 45 Vinyl "Deeper Love" 1986 Capitol VG+ to NM USD $3.00 Buy It Now 7h 26m
Hybrid Kids 1+2 CD Morgan Fisher Two Collections Of Classic Mutants CDBRED362 USD $5.08 [0 bids]
7h 29m
Y5-18 Vinyl Record Album 45 Blue Note Lee Morgan The Sidewinder Part 1 And 2! USD $16.77 Buy It Now 7h 30m
CD War Paint by Lorrie Morgan USD $7.09 Buy It Now 7h 38m
EX- !! The Wilson Malone Voiceband/Funnysad Music/1968 Morgan Stereo LP USD $56.05 Buy It Now 7h 52m
LEE MORGAN The Sidewinder LP PROMO RARE DMM AUDIOPHILE NM Joe Henderson USD $48.00 Buy It Now 7h 52m
JANE MORGAN & The Troubadors 45 " Fascination " KAPP Canada 1957' USD $5.27 Buy It Now 7h 54m
Lee Morgan "Genius Of Lee Morgan" (S) USD $12.99 Buy It Now 7h 55m
Craig Morgan - That's why CD 2009 SONY USD $6.99 Buy It Now 8h
Craig Morgan - Little bit of life CD 2006 Broken Bow USD $6.99 Buy It Now 8h 5m
LEE MORGAN city lights 24 BIT CD blue note TOCJ-9085 japan WITH OBI limited 1999 USD $29.99 Buy It Now 8h 5m
McCoy Tyner "Tender Moments" BLUE NOTE BST-84275 JAZZ LP RECORD Lee Morgan USD $19.99 Buy It Now 8h 11m
New: Morgan, David: Well Audio CD USD $16.49 Buy It Now 8h 14m
MUSIC CD- LEE MORGAN QUINTET, LIVE AT THE LIGHTHOUSE '70- 2 DISCS USD $12.00 Buy It Now 8h 16m
That's Why 2008 by Craig Morgan Ex-Library USD $3.99 Buy It Now 8h 17m
Old Record Jane Morgan Take Me Away/In Paree USD $8.99 Buy It Now 8h 22m
DERRICK MORGAN - MEEKLY WAIT - BLUE BEAT BB94 REGGAE 7" 45 SINGLE ? LISTEN USD $3.99 [0 bids]
8h 29m
LORRIE MORGAN ITS TOO LATESOMETHING IN RED 45 RPM RECORD USD $3.60 Buy It Now 8h 29m
UB40, GEFFERY MORGAN - PROMO LP SP-5033 USD $5.00 Buy It Now 8h 29m
THE HELEN MORGAN STORY SOUNDTRACK, RAY HEINDORF - LP USD $35.00 Buy It Now 8h 34m
BLUE CHRISTMAS, THE MISTLETOE KISS, RUSS MORGAN, DECCA 24766 USD $4.88 Buy It Now 8h 35m
Morgan Records Present a Glorious Musical Preview MR.SAM 1 lp USD $4.46 [0 bids]
8h 41m
New: Mike Morgan & the Crawl: Mighty Fine Dancin Audio CD USD $25.99 Buy It Now 8h 45m
RUSS MORGAN : NEVER TIRED OF MUSIC IN THE MORGAN MANNER : 2 CD Set : JASCD 403 USD $9.92 Buy It Now 8h 46m
RUSS MORGAN, MUSIC IN THE COUNTRY MANNER - LP ST 2158 USD $5.00 Buy It Now 8h 46m
RUSS MORGAN there goes that song again LP VG+ SPC-3016 Vinyl Stereo Record USD $6.00 Buy It Now 8h 48m
LEE MORGAN - BOTH/AND CLUB,SAN FRANCISCO 1970 2 CD NEW+ USD $27.44 Buy It Now 8h 51m
Davis Morgan-Drive My Blues Away CD NEW USD $16.19 Buy It Now 8h 51m
The Morgan James Duo......Sweet Pussycat.......45rpm USD $1.26 [0 bids]
8h 54m
RUSS MORGAN MANNER, FAREWELL BLUES, 10" BRUNSWICK RECORD, 20-1799, 78 RPM USD $8.99 Buy It Now 8h 54m
Craig Morgan - A Whole Lot More To Me [New CD] USD $13.16 Buy It Now 8h 57m

More places to buy MORGAN music online Buy MORGAN & Prog Rock Digital Music online:
MORGAN has no upcoming shows, according to LAST.FM syndicated events and shows feed

MORGAN discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

MORGAN top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.71 | 48 ratings
Nova Solis
1972
3.84 | 29 ratings
The Sleeper Wakes
1973

MORGAN Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

MORGAN Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

MORGAN Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

MORGAN Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

MORGAN Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Nova Solis by MORGAN album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.71 | 48 ratings

BUY
Nova Solis
Morgan Symphonic Prog

Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
Special Collaborator Rock Progressivo Italiano Team

4 stars An obscure British prog-rock band from the early Seventies, Morgan took their name from keyboard player Morgan Fisher (a future member of Mott the Hoople), so it should come as no surprise that his playing dominates much of the music! Performing in a mostly symphonic style with plenty of spacey flourishes and pop vocal melodies on their 1972 debut `Nova Solis', he was ably supported by Robert Sapsed's nicely fat and upfront bass, with Maurice Bacon's thrashing and busy charge of drums/percussion constantly powering behind the oceans of keyboards. Guitars are absent with the exception of short acoustic passages supplied by vocalist Tim Staffel, forever associated with his connection to the pre-Queen band Smile that featured guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor. Sadly he sometimes falls back on a painful falsetto, but other times his confidence and optimism perfectly carries the music forwards, and the band often deliver passages similar to those found on King Crimson, Greenslade and Argent albums from the same era.

The first side presents three short to medium length pieces, all of them crossing back and forth between grand symphonic themes, dazzling instrumental prowess and slick rock/pop melodies. Opener `Samarkand the Golden' is the punchiest and most tightly-written moment on the disc, full of grooving spasms powered by Maurice's snappy drumming, Robert's grumbling and deliciously aggressive bass, and no shortage of creaking King Crimson-flavoured infernal Mellotron, glistening electric piano and bubbling Moog tastiness from Morgan. Tim's voice moves between high-pitched croons and gutsier snarls, sometimes reminding of Greenslade/Samurai vocalist Dave Lawson as well. It serves him well on ballad `Alone', delivering a nice variety of weary treated lead vocals in the verses that turn warmly optimistic for the chorus, plus his ethereal background harmonies are haunting. Instrumentally it sits somewhere alongside the softer melancholic moments on the first few King Crimson albums, but an instrumental interlude in the middle is grand and dreamy in the classic Genesis manner.

The up-tempo and excited `War Games' reminds of both Argent and parts of Curved Air, letting rip with ravishing electric piano runs and dazzling harpsichord-like keys to provide a boppy infectiousness, but the overexcited lead vocal is a little on the grating side. The entire second side is then made up of a nine-part suite, loaded with a variety of ambitious ideas. It opens with a grand whirring lead theme that bookends the epic, moving through everything from slightly obnoxious jazzy poppy vocal pieces, droning ambience, aimless spacey noodling ala `Moonchild' off the Crimson debut, more inviting acoustic guitar balladry and loopy runaway instrumentals that again call to mind Greenslade, and it's certainly an eclectic set of fragmented ideas.

`Nova Solis' proves to be a real grower of a prog-rock work, with just a few little issues perhaps holding it back from achieving true greatness. Although the vocals are hardly a deal-breaker, it must be said that the disc really takes off every time the singing stops, allowing the instrumental playing to soar to greater heights. The extended side-long suite on the second side also doesn't flow together particularly well, but admittedly all the individual little ideas and segments sound plenty tasty on their own merits even if they're never developed properly into something more cohesive. But the album is likely to be a keyboard lovers paradise, is full of positive energy, melodic tunes and excited playing from all the performers, and it makes Morgan and `Nova Solis' a very worthwhile addition for those prog-rock collectors looking for lesser known but still plenty rewarding extras to add to their library.

Three and a half stars.

(Dedicated to Mike Hewetson, the biggest `Nova Solis' fan I know!)

 Nova Solis by MORGAN album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.71 | 48 ratings

BUY
Nova Solis
Morgan Symphonic Prog

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Crossover Prog Team

3 stars This was Morgan's debut album, released in 1972. Along with Morgan Fisher (keys) were Tim Staffell (acoustic guitar/vocals, always to be remembered as the singer in Smile which was the pre-Queen outfit), bassist Bob Sapsed and drummer Maurice Bacon. Listening to this album now, for the first time on CD, it is interesting to hear just how similar this is in many ways to ELP. Morgan shows himself to be a fine keyboard player who loved to use his moog and mellotron whenever possible. While there are very complex pieces here (the closing title cut is over twenty minutes long), there is even a Greg Lake?style acoustic number "Alone", which Tim apparently performed at his audition with the band and got himself the gig. Although parts of it do sound quite dated, it is an album that I think any lover of classic ELP will also enjoy. It is different enough not to be called copyist, while at the same time still maintaining certain similarities. Anybody approaching this album for the first time will be pleasantly surprised. Although there are no bonus cuts, there is plenty of extra information and photographs, as one would expect from an Angel Air release.

Originally appeared in Feedback #60

 Nova Solis by MORGAN album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.71 | 48 ratings

BUY
Nova Solis
Morgan Symphonic Prog

Review by 1967/ 1976

4 stars The only thing that strikes me as odd is that Morgan has had to come to Italy to record (and published) this album. Why, then, as too many bands (not just between RCA's bands) has disappeared as a band. Considering the high quality of music presented can only regret that this band has produced one album and has recorded a second album (released posthumously). Morgan was a band formed by great musicians, all with previous experience in famous bands (but today interesting for the presence of vocalist Tim Staffel, former Smile [pre Queen]).

The music is good, a mix between ELP, King Crimson, Yes but it is strange As there are echoes of Italian bands of the period, perhaps because many of Italian bands were trying to copy English andAmerican music (not that this is a fault, after all). (Probably the echo of Italian Prog is due to certain sounds of synths, because programmed with Italian programmers). In all these compositions like "War Games" or "Alone", shine a bright light. Although the production is a little flat (defect typical of Italian productions of the period) and it sounds so Banco del Mutuo Soccorso I can say that "Nova Solis" is an album of a band that deserved to go to the Olympus of the great bands of the 70's. Also because the suite "Nova Solis" it sounds very Yes in some parts and Greenslade in others, as well as incorporating elements of King Crimson, ELP, and other similar bands, to the point that it could be said to see in it a very personal style.

Although "Nova Solis" is an album of a minor success band, is an excellent album, that can still be good today and, indeed, to convey the same emotions as that emitted in 1972.

 Nova Solis by MORGAN album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.71 | 48 ratings

BUY
Nova Solis
Morgan Symphonic Prog

Review by The Doctor
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars I purchased this album primarily because I wanted to see what Tim Staffel got up to after leaving Smile. As a big Smile fan (as big a fan as one can be for a group that released only 6 songs clocking in for a total of less than 30 minutes), I had hoped for a bit of that Smile sound in this album. I wasn't quite sure what to expect of keyboardist Fisher, as I knew he would later go on to Mott the Hoople, and although a fan of that band, I wasn't sure how much in terms of "chops" the guy had. I was disappointed on neither account.

The vocal portions are quite reminiscent of the Smile/early Queen sound, especially on the Staffel penned "Alone" and on the chorus of "War Games" and of course on the old Smile tune "Earth" which made its way into the middle of the epic "Nova Solis". As others have said, the instrumental work reminds me a lot of ELP, that is bombastic, pretentious and a whole lot of fun. Fisher tackles the keys as ably as Emerson, and the bassist and drummer (Robert Sapsed and Mo Bacon respectively) are more than capable of keeping up and providing some over the top playing to go along with the over the top keyboard work of Fisher.

The epic "Nova Solis" is actually three songs, "Floating", the previously mentioned "Earth" and "May I Remember" connected with interwoven instrumental passages composed by Fisher (think Tarkus here). "Alone" is more of an accoustic song and definitely reminds of Smile, and a bit of the more accoustic ELP style. "War Games" has a bouncy, rhythmic piano during the verses, and the choruses are definitely Smile or early Queen in their sound. The opening track, "Samarkhand the Golden" kicks things off with ample amounts of pomp. This is an easy 4-star album, a great edition to anyone's prog collection. If you are a fan of Smile or early-Queen and ELP, add a star, as this is essential listening.

 Nova Solis by MORGAN album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.71 | 48 ratings

BUY
Nova Solis
Morgan Symphonic Prog

Review by Atavachron
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars

Morgan Fisher is a genius.

There, I said it. I mean, how else could he make some of the most inventive and interesting prog rock on the planet and end up in his late 50s writing music for commercials in Japan, and getting a pretty penny for it I would hope. Sounds like a good gig to me, and a good life lived for this king of B-list prog, master of the sideshow and winner of countless Best Music No One Really Cares About awards. I don't know, maybe Fisher's playfulness appeals to me (something usually missing from today's prog). Or maybe his truly impressive musical range and compositional gifts are just too hard to ignore despite the funhouse feeling on this debut from 1972. And then there's the spectacle. All I know is Nova Solis is spilling over with atmosphere and imagery, and the fact is that Morgan Fisher gave more on his records than many of the bigger names of the time. It's an album wherein, as John Lennon said of Mr. Kite; "You should be able to smell the peanuts".

Solis is an extravaganza of what had become possible with the rock format, a parade of idea after idea passing like giant floats, each eagerly waiting in line to be revealed. This is prog when things were closer to the wild west, with as many snakeoil salesmen and roaming criminals as reliable merchants and ranchers. But among the scoundrels, Morgan Fisher and songwriting partner Tim Staffell were legit. Simply put, this LP was the sh*t-- the absolutely real thing, authentic, strong as aged goat cheese and stinking of a far off place where no good things were happening. It's what the guys who have heard it all and know classic era prog inside & out quietly listen to when no one else is around. Every aging, coffee-swilling cigarette smoker with a bad hankerin' for prog and a tragically steady paycheck who's collection from Britain between 1969 and 1979 is larger than that thing they launched the space shuttle from will deny to their death this is the godsmack of second tier symphonic prog. But it is and they know it.

Similarities are hard to peg for these guys, it was such an original group. Certainly the brilliant descriptive and incidental work of Raymond Scott is apparent in Fisher's material, as well as Syd Barrett's sense of adventure, the circuses of Dave Greenslade and maybe a whiff of Zappa. 'Samarkhand the Golden' is wonderful vintage stuff enhanced liberally by Fisher's VCS 3 synth, Hohner & DK 1, Mo Bacon's eager drums and bassist Rob Sapsed doing a heroic job enhancing Fisher and Staffell's arrangement. Derivative 'Alone' is a miss but 'War Games' rocks, Bacon tearing up his drums, Staffell's vaguely biblical lyric and giddy vocal, and Fisher terrific on all number of keys from a Steinway Grand to a Hammond to a Spinet as he knits up the background, always sure to never let a good moment go to waste. Holst's 'Jupiter' from The Planets starts the second half, the nine part title piece. It's not long before things start melting apart into sound effects and space sickness but Morgan picks it up and pumps out the prog; mean organ flurries, unexpected jazzplay, piano lines merging into squealing synths, descriptive mood-setting, carousels, calliopes, histrionic dramaturgy, and more Holst at the end.

A one of a kind release by a band that epitomised the working prog musician and what a few inspired guys could do with some good equipment. Someday along your listening journey, Morgan Fisher's work deserves your attention. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow. But soon, and for the rest of your life.

 The Sleeper Wakes by MORGAN album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.84 | 29 ratings

BUY
The Sleeper Wakes
Morgan Symphonic Prog

Review by DREAMFISH

5 stars This album shadowed by its recognized predecessor "Nova Solis" 1972 has exceeded all my expectations. Unlike "Nova Solis" (which generally speaking is a kind of "mix bag" of pop, sympho with some jazz-rock-fusion touches) here we have one of the very beautiful, uniquely formed, crafted, keyboard-driven kind of sympho-rock and jazz-rock outfits. To get a rough idea just imagine how it could be if ELP would play jazz-rock. Morgan Fisher has proofed him self as one of the most intricate keyboard wizards (Moraz-Wakeman-Emerson level). The album was tragically underrated at the time due to poor promotion. In US the album was issued in 1976 by title "Brown Out". A must for all fans of keyboard dominated type of symphonic-rock direction. Highly recommended, five stars without any doubts! Progressively yours. Dreamfish.
 Nova Solis by MORGAN album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.71 | 48 ratings

BUY
Nova Solis
Morgan Symphonic Prog

Review by ExittheLemming
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Music is the literature of the heart; it commences where speech ends (Alphonse de Lamartine)

Smarkhand the Golden - For those scholarly and academic types out there (of which I am neither) this 8 minute epic may be based on a poem by James Elroy Flecker called The Golden Journey to Samarkand written circa 1913 (just after he puts the kids to bed) But no, I don't have a clue what Mr Flecker or Morgan are babbling on about, except that Samarkhand just might stand as a (lazy) metaphor for exoticism and wise up, this type of stupefied romanticism was ripe for those woolly heads sliced into the prog basket by revolting punks. (n'est pas?) The piece is very well arranged with good and judicious use of competing meters, dynamic contrasts/timbre and pace together with some mouth watering synth work from Morgan Fisher, who appears to have sold himself rather short with his subsequent stint in the decent but undistinguished Mott the Hoople ? (Everyone has to the pay the rent after all)

I was quite astonished at just how technically accomplished and advanced Mr F's playing and writing is, and those of you with a fondness for analogue synth weirdness, gritty Hammond organ and Usain Bolt piano may well be in hog heaven with this album. (Must dig out my long abandoned Mott the Hoople LP to see if I can catch a glimpse of this turncoat progger)

Unfortunately, this one man jury is still out on the vocals of Tim Staffel, which irritate and delight in equal measure, with his delivery alternating between egomaniacal showmanship and quirky excitability. Yep, our Tim is one of those vocalists blessed with an admirable range, but he cannot bear to let the listener ever forget this for a second. I like his voice very much in the lower to mid range area, but unlike most of the dogs in our neighbourhood, do not care for his tonsilry in the upper registers. At times he comes across as a jollier version of Robert Smith or Kevin Rowland selling fish at Billingsgate Market.

Alone - Vaguely reminiscent of Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds as if played over different chords, but a very strong song delivered with some restraint by the previously histrionic Staffel, who dispenses with his irritating falsetto conceits as heard on the opening track. The band sensibly douse their fiery bombast on this one, and let a very strong vocal track breathe by accentuating the melody and not overpowering the delicate fingerpicked guitar accompaniment.

War Games - Inside every progger there is a peace emissary just bursting to get out it would seem. Ah, the futility of war (most of which are waged to allow us the right to condemn their stupidity) Lovely dislocated jazzy piano on this one replete with another strong tune before a very skilful transition of pace into the Tonight we ride on Bethlehem section which employs a sloping and languid groove in perfect empathy with Staffel's warbling melody. Thereafter, we encounter a bewildering array of start/stop section writing but Morgan carry off this tricky compositional device admirably. If overdone, this technique can condemn the music to incoherence or sounding contrived, but the band exercise just enough suitable restraint in this area. Lovely snaky bass from Sapsed and I particularly like his tone throughout this record. Gutsy, but neither distorted or flat and woolly (see the 1st two Crimson albums)

Nova Solis - In keeping with symphonic prog's time honoured recipe, this 20 minute monster opens with a suitably bombastic adaptation of a classical piece, re the Planets Suite by Holst. Great fun all round, with synth pyrotechnics flying left, right and centre and buried distantly way back in the bowels of the mix, the sound of the inconsolable sobbing of the composer. At it's conclusion we meet the eerie morse code distress signal as tapped out on a Moog in homage to the latter's Mars, the Bringer of War. Yet more dizzying piano from Fisher which provides some welcome relief from Staffel's affected and wearying bonhomie during the sung section. Even through a ring modulator (as they attempt here) his voice still cannot be cajoled into anything other than mildly annoying. The noodling bass departure and spacey sound collage that follows is entertaining, but strictly atmospheric filler. Strummed acoustic guitar chords introduce a very robust song section, ah this is better lads, please keep it up. This is shaping up to be the highlight of the album and even Timmy boy is a delight on this part. Some very brisk ostinato passages follow which are reminiscent of the instrumental portions of 'Tarkus' and Morgan even preface the Latin flavoured live improv of Aquatarkus as heard on Welcome Back My Friends. However, these are merely reference points, and although the influence is palpable the music is not merely a slavish reproduction, so let's not get too picky here. Perhaps the comparisons to ELP crop up simply because there is no electric guitar on this record ? (or they both have an irritating singer, Go figure)

All the ingredients that go to baking a yummy prog puddy are here in abundance, with liberal garnishes of ELP, Argent, Greenslade, Yes and all the other celebrity chefs you can shake a ribbon controller at. Although many of the compositional structures and instrumentation employed do ape the gatefold masterpieces of yore, the music itself is very accomplished and certainly on a par with much of the output from that golden age of caped young men in tight pants.

There is a prevailing tendency to appraise Nova Solis as though it were a rather cold and calculated foray into the then burgeoning prog marketplace by some unscrupulous musos and record executives, but I can honestly say that such skulduggery cannot be deduced from the very fine music that is contained therein

(They mean it man, so who cares)

 Nova Solis by MORGAN album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.71 | 48 ratings

BUY
Nova Solis
Morgan Symphonic Prog

Review by JackBH

4 stars 4,5 stars - This debut of the obscure prog outfit Morgan is perhaps the best prog I've ever heard, and believe me, I know more about prog than any of you out there. The music is very dominated by synths (in fact, no electric guitars can be heard on this album), especially the VCS-3, and Morgan Fisher sure knows how to use that thing. And what a precious little gem Roger Taylor and Brian May lost when Tim Staffell quit Smile. No wonder they picked Freddie to replace him - their voices are very similar. If you are looking for dreamy melodic prog rock in the vein of Yes, (early) King Crimson, Genesis, etc., this is NOT what you're after. This is much more complex and inaccessible than any of those bands. If I wasn't such an expert on prog rock, I'd probably say that it reminds me of ELP. But it doesn't! Emerson never played this complex music. Fisher is far more talented, and it goes without saying that Tim Staffell is a better singer than Greg Lake since his voice is downright mediocre. Now you run along and buy this album and expose your little ears to experimental rock extraordinaire!!
 The Sleeper Wakes by MORGAN album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.84 | 29 ratings

BUY
The Sleeper Wakes
Morgan Symphonic Prog

Review by Atavachron
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars A band that falls into that gray area of prog rock during the early 1970s when everyone and their brother was getting into it with mixed results. That being said, 'The Sleeper Wakes' is not a half-bad record, though only about four of the cuts are above average. But those few are excellent, even brilliant at times, and certainly superior to material of similar ilk by Greenslade at their duller moments or Tempest (UK). Keyboardist Morgan Fisher leads a kind of ELP organ prog meets Frank Zappa jamming with Cartoon (American). Classical rockers 'Fire in the Head', 'The Right' and avant-symphonic pieces like 'What is - is What' make this easy-to-scoff-at album worth a few dollars if you see it.
Thanks to Sean Trane for the artist addition. and to bhikkhu for the last updates

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: JazzMusicArchives.com — jazz music reviews and archives | MetalMusicArchives.com — metal music reviews and archives