BARRY LAMB – It’s All About Purpose (Six Armed Man)

Barry Lamb is another new name to me, and this album is all his own work, composing and playing everything himself. Consequently he is due all the kudos, or all the blame for the result. Unfortunately, in my opinion, it comes down to the latter. The CD opens with ‘The Big Question (i) the question of existence’, which is just some aimless doodling on a synth, and while ‘The Big Question (ii) the question of significance’ is more musical, it is still formless new age meandering which never really goes anywhere. Part three of the trilogy harks back to part one with a collection of squelches and squiggles and no musical content at all. I was hoping that after that three parter things would improve, but while ‘It’s Not About You (and neither is it about me)’ has a bit more structure than previous tracks it is still something of a chore to sit through. ‘Built For Eternity’ therefore surprises the listener by actually being a moodily atmospheric filmic piece of music – I could just see some ‘Twin Peaks’ style drama using it in a dream sequence. It goes without saying that the seventeen and a half minute ‘Made For Community’ goes on for far too long, especially as about halfway through the melodic synth chords give way to more quirky doodling. ‘Formed To Be Transformed’ carries this on for a further ten minutes, and finally the album is over. I used to buy cassettes of music like this in the 80’s, when every chancer with a TEAK home studio and a Casio thought that they were a musical genius, but 99% of them have now been consigned to the bin, and I cannot believe that people are still producing this stuff. It all sounds so dated, and some of these albums can be a real chore to listen to. I am sure that Barry Lamb is sincere in his quest to bring his musical vision to the attention of the public, but I could not listen to this again and honestly say that I was enjoying it.


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