Although it is slightly less polished than Demons and Wizards, The Magician’s Birthday album continues in the same vein and gives more evidence of why this band continues to have a large cult following today. Keyboardist Ken Hensley tends to dominate this record more than Demons, and it is full of the moody, introspective ballads that would characterize his solo album of this time, Proud Words on a Dusty Shelf. However, there are a few lively tunes here just to keep things from getting too mellow. These include the concert standby “Sweet Lorraine” and the title track, taking a cherubic “Yellow Submarine”-like approach and highlighted by a remarkable Hendrix-like solo from Mick Box. An approach that only the most pretentious Ivy-league types could find fault with. If you have Demons and Wizards and liked it, you’ll definitely want to check this one out as well.