(All Album Reviews by Chuck AzEee!)
Roger Chapman-Vocals, Harmonica, Tenor Sax
"Charlie" Whitney-Guitars, keyboards
Jim King-Harmonica, Woodwinds, Keyboards and vocals
Rich Grech-Bass, Violin, Cello and Vocals
A tale of two bands, Traffic featured three of Britain's greatest and well known musicians; Steve Winwood, Dave Mason and Jim Capaldi, who were out of site as musicians and composers, lasting decades filled with fame and notoriety, in and out of the Traffic.
Then you have Family, Traffic's only contemporary, but yet Family was in another league by themselves, featuring one of rock music's most unique voices, lead singer Roger Chapman, had a voice that would scare children away if he actually spoke the way he sung, guitarist John "Charlie" Whitney, is probably one of the greatest guitarists that no one has ever heard of, serving as a reference point to many of the 70's era UK fret men. The most well known member of Family, but not during his tenure in Family, would be the multi-instrumentalist French man, Ric Grech, who would find success as the least known (???) member of Blind Faith and Traffic.
The band's debut, Music In A Doll's House, is a dated (sound-wise) but yet adventurous debut, that was too clever to just be branded as "psychedelic", wistfully mixing folk, blues and jazz elements throughout this gem.
Music In A Doll's House continues in the same pattern as The Beatles's Sgt. Pepper, The Who's Sell Out and The Small Faces Ogden Nut Flakes, in which skits and variations make up most of the music also providing little break space in between, but yet something seems a bit different about this release as despite the clever pretensions of the other albums, Music In A Doll's House is Family's most adventurous output, and the band would find them maturing with each release, distancing themselves from their art-rock past and push the boundaries of proto-metal in instances.
Because of the dated sounding psychedelic effects throughout this album, it would be hard to recommend this album to those whom are not into 60's era psychedelia, but yet those that love this era's music, would find a keeper in Music In A Doll's House as it is a wonderful, yet auspicious start to wonderful, very influential British band, whose influence can be found in bands like Jethro Tull, Genesis, Yes, The Strawbs, Gentle Giant to name a few, and during their time, rivaled Pink Floyd and The Soft Machine for progressive rock supremacy in the UK during the sixties.