This album never makes it to any “best albums of all time” lists, and I’ve always wondered... why is it not cool to like Days of Future Passed? Maybe it’s the ostentatious, John Lennon-esque “I’m-saying-the-opposite-so-I’m-profound” title, or possibly it’s the over-the-top spoken interludes which bookend the album, with their “heavy,” faux philosophical lyrics seemingly out of the mouth of Ra, or possibly, it’s the very concept of the album itself: moving the listener from morning into night in a seven part song cycle, with the London Festival Orchestra providing classical music interludes between the pop songs. Or it might be the album artwork, with its Technicolor, two-way, psychedelic face being orbited by various symbols and images from the album, which I absolutely love. In fact, I love everything about Days of Future Passed, and I return to it regularly for a nostalgic spin on my well-worn iPod.
In fact, my first memory of hearing the Moody Blues classic 1967 album goes like this: I was no more than three years old and my family was still living in the farmhouse my parents used to rent in Kewanee before moving to Neponset, Illinois in 1974. In my memory, I heard “Nights In White Satin” streaming from the upstairs bedroom of my older brother, Roger. I remember pulling my tiny, diapered self up the stairs, one step at a time, to check out where those sumptuous sounds might be coming from. Every time I hear “Tuesday Afternoon” or “Nights In White Satin” on the radio, I return to that memory.
My brother, Jay, suggests that Days Of Future Passed isn’t even the Moody Blues’ best album. He and another family member, Aunt Debby, insist that On The Threshold Of A Dream is the best Moody Blues album. They were there, so they should know, but Days seems to be the one most remembered. Possibly due to it containing two of the band’s most renowned and well-loved hit singles, “Tuesday Afternoon,” #24 in 1968, and “Nights In White Satin,” #2 in 1972.
To be honest, other than their fluke top ten hit from 1986, “Your Wildest Dreams,” Days Of Future Passed is all I really know of the Moody Blues. And it doesn’t matter that the album hasn’t made it to any rock critics “best of” lists; fans of pop music have spoken. It’s been over 40 years since Days release, and the album continues to sell to new generations of fans. In fact, the Moody Blues are still bringing the album’s pageantry and summer of love wonderment to the masses, playing the entire Days album for fans in the only awesome way it knows how - with full symphony orchestra.