Barclay James Harvest: Everyone Is Everybody Else (1974)

Sporting a title that only a Nektar fan could love, BJH’s first album for Polydor is handily the best thing they’ve done since Once Again. Those two albums form the fantasy and science fiction bookends (respectively) within which the discussion of classic BJH is framed. On Everyone Is Everybody Else, everything comes together: the grotesque guitars, classically inspired arrangements, otherwordly keyboards, rich vocal harmonies, unorthodox drumming and the familiar themes of a society lost at war and lost in space. The opening “Child of the Universe” is probably the last thing that listeners were expecting from an album produced by Rodger Bain, heretofore known as the spiral, sonic architect of Black Sabbath’s early works. It’s an innocent, spacey song that laments how children are often the victims of war; a message that, sadly, is as relevant today as it was forty years ago. Lees closes the album on a similar (and high) note with the anti-war “For No One.” In between, you’ll find some of the band’s best songs: “Negative Earth” (which returns to the lost-in-space theme, this time through the plight of the Apollo 13 mission), “The Great 1974 Mining Disaster” (with more references to Mr. Jones) and “See Me See You” (with gizmo in tow and shades of 10cc’s demented pop smarts). Also notable on this album are vocal harmonies that point directly to the work of Crosby, Stills and Nash; a connection that would be made clearer on their next album, which engaged the services of Neil Young producer Elliot Mazer. You’ll hear those harmonies on “Crazy City,” “Poor Boy Blues” and “Mill Boys.” Of course, I’d be remiss in noting that, while BJH was finally finding its wings, the songwriting/vocal talents of Woolly (whose name isn’t even spelled correctly on the album credits) had been noticeably grounded. From this point forward, Lees and Holroyd would write nearly all of the material, alternating between them much as Justin Hayward and John Lodge would in later years. Polydor had to be happy with the results; and, hopefully, Harvest (the label) was kicking themselves.

Original LP Version
A1. Child of the Universe (Lees)
A2. Negative Earth (Holroyd/Pritchard)
A3. Paper Wings (Holroyd/Pritchard)
A4. The Great 1974 Mining Disaster (Lees)
B1. Crazy City (Holroyd)
B2. See Me See You (Lees)
B3. Poor Boy Blues (Holroyd)
B4. Mill Boys (Lees)
B5. For No One (Lees)

Releases
1974.06.14 / Polydor / UK / LP / 2383 286
1974.06.14 / Polydor / UK / LP / ACB 00216 / Audio Club issue
1974 / Polydor / UK / CS / 3170 186
1974 / Polydor / US / LP / PD-6508
1974 / Polydor / US / 8T / 3820 118
1983.08 / Polydor / UK / LP / SPELP-11
1987 / Polydor / Germany / CD / 833 448-2
Japan / CS / IMD 8004
Polydor / Japan / CD / UICY-9047
2014.09.01 / Polydor / UK / LP / 535 208-8 / Back to Black reissue

Expanded, remastered CD reissue
1. Child of the Universe (Lees)
2. Negavtive Earth (Holroyd/Pritchard)
3. Paper Wings (Holroyd/Pritchard)
4. The Great 1974 Mining Disaster (Lees)
5. Crazy City (Holroyd)
6. See Me See You (Lees)

7. Poor Boy Blues (Holroyd)
8. Mill Boys (Lees)
9. For No One (Lees)
10. Child of the Universe (single version)
11. The Great 1974 Mining Disaster (original mix)
12. Maestoso (A Hymn in the Roof of the World)
13. Negative Earth (original mix)
14. Child of the Universe (remake for planned US single)

Releases
2003.06.02 / Polydor / UK / CD / 065 401-2
2006 / Polydor / Japan / CD / UICY-93044 / digital remaster
2016.04.27 / Polydor / Japan / CD / UICY-25564 / super high material

Expanded, remastered 3-CD reissue
A1. Child of the Universe
A2. Negative Earth
A3. Paper Wings
A4. The Great 1974 Mining Disaster
A5. Crazy City
A6. See Me See You
A7. Poor Boy Blues
A8. Mill Boys
A9. For No One
A10. Child of the Universe (US single version)
A11. The Great 1974 Mining Disaster (original mix)
A12. Maestoso (A Hymn in the Roof of the World)
B1. Child of the Universe (new stereo mix)
B2. Negative Earth (new stereo mix)
B3. Paper Wings (new stereo mix)
B4. The Great 1974 Mining Disaster (new stereo mix)
B5. Crazy City (new stereo mix)
B6. See Me See You (new stereo mix)
B7. Poor Boy Blues (new stereo mix)
B8. Mill Boys (new stereo mix)
B9. Child of the Universe (US single version – new stereo mix)
B10. Negative Earth (original mix)
B11. Child of the Universe (US single version – remake)
C1. Child of the Universe (5.1 surround sound mix)
C2. Negative Earth (5.1 surround sound mix)
C3. Paper Wings (5.1 surround sound mix)
C4. The Great 1974 Mining Disaster (5.1 surround sound mix)
C5. Crazy City (5.1 surround sound mix)
C6. See Me See You (5.1 surround sound mix)
C7. Poor Boy Blues (5.1 surround sound mix)
C8. Mill Boys (5.1 surround sound mix)
C9. Child of the Universe (US single version – 5.1 surround sound mix)

Releases
2016 / Esoteric / UK / 3CD / ECLEC-32540 / 24-bit remaster

Personnel

  • Les Holroyd – bass, acc. Guitar, rhythm guitar (“picked” guitar on B3, B4), lead vocals (A2, A3, B1, B3), backing vocals
  • John Lees – lead guitar, acc. Guitar, lead vocals (A1, A4, B2, B4, B5), backing vocals
  • Mel Pritchard – drums, percussion
  • Stuart “Wooly” Wolstenholme – keyboards, backing vocals
  • Produced by Rodger Bain
  • Engineered by Rufus Cartwright
  • Mix engineered by Ted Sharp
  • Photography by Alex Agor
  • Art direction by Vincent McEvoy

Arcana

  • The band went on tour with Rare Bird to support the album, which given the band’s ornithological interests seems only fitting.

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