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Released: November 1967

Rating: 4.438 (average of 8 ratings)

Genre: progressive/ psychedelic/ orchestral rock

Quotable: “one of the defining documents of the blossoming psychedelic era” – Bruce Eder, All Music Guide

Album Tracks:

  1. The Day Begins
  2. Dawn: Dawn Is a Feeling
  3. The Morning: Another Morning
  4. Lunch Break: Peak Hour
  5. The Afternoon: Forever Afternoon (Tuesday?)/ Time to Get Away
  6. Evening: The Sun Set/ Twilight Time
  7. The Night: Nights in White Satin

Total Running Time: 41:21


sales in U.S. only 1 million
sales in U.K. only - estimated --
sales in all of Europe as determined by IFPI – click here to go to their site. --
sales worldwide - estimated 1 million


peak on U.S. Billboard album chart 3
peak on U.K. album chart 27

Singles/Hit Songs:

  • Nights in White Satin (11/10/67) #2 US, #19 UK, #37 AC. Sales: 1 million
  • Tuesday Afternoon (7/20/68) #24 US

Notes: A 2008 reissue added some alternate tracks (“Tuesday Afternoon,” “Dawn Is a Feeling,” “The Sun Set,” “Twilight Time”) and pre-Days singles (“Fly Me High,” “I Really Haven’t Got the Time,” “Love and Beauty,” “Leave This Man Alone,” and “Cities”), as well as the Moodies rendition of “Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood,” by the Animals.


Rated one of the top 1000 albums of all time by Dave’s Music Database. Click to learn more.

Days of Future Passed
The Moody Blues
Days of Future Passed “marked the formal debut of the psychedelic-era Moody Blues” (Eder) and is “probably the most successful integration of orchestra and rock band” (Morse). “The Moodles were dealing with the relative failure of their R&B career and had decided to shift styles” (Morse) so, in 1966, they brought Justin Hayward and John Lodge on board “to give the band an infusion of new songwriting talent and began writing material with a ‘cosmic’ edge to it” (Morse).

The new lineup recorded a pair of new singles before launching into the “bolder and more ambitious” (Eder) Days of Future Passed. Interestingly, the “album was created out of deceit” (Morse). Decca Records “approached them to record a rock version of Dvorak’s ‘New World Symphony’ with the London Festival Orchestra” (Morse) “to showcase its enhanced stereo-sound technology” (Eder). The Moodies “agreed to this idea, but when they got into the studio” (Morse) “at the behest of the band, producer Tony Clarke (with engineer Derek Varnals aiding and abetting) hijacked the project” (Eder). The Moodies “began recording their own material” (Morse) “with conductor/arranger Peter Knight adding the orchestral accompaniment and devising the bridge sections between the songs and the album’s grandiose opening and closing sections” (Eder).

“The record company didn’t know what to do with the resulting album, which was neither classical nor pop, but following its release…, audiences found their way to it as one of the first pieces of heavily orchestrated, album-length psychedelic rock to come out of England in the wake of the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s and Magical Mystery Tour albums” (Eder).

“What surprises first-time listeners – and delighted them at the time – is the degree to which the group shares the spotlight with the London Festival Orchestra without compromising their sound or getting lost in the lush mix of sounds. That’s mostly because they came to this album with the strongest, most cohesive body of songs in their history, having spent the previous year working up a new stage act and a new body of material (and working the bugs out of it on-stage), the best of which ended up here” (Eder).

The album “was refreshingly original, rather than an attempt to mimic the Beatles; sandwiched among the playful lyricism of Another Morning and the mysticism of The Sunset, songs like Tuesday Afternoon and Twilight Time (which remained in their concert repertory for three years) were pounding rockers within the British psychedelic milieu, and the harmony singing (another new attribute for the group) made the band’s sound unique” (Eder).

“With ‘Tuesday Afternoon’ and Nights in White Satin to drive sales, Days of Future Passed became one of the defining documents of the blossoming psychedelic era, and one of the most enduringly popular albums of its era” (Eder).

Review Source(s):
  • Bruce Eder, All Music Guide
  • Tim Morse, Classic Rock Stories. St. Martin’s Griffin; New York: 1998. Pages 189-190.

Last updated November 17, 2008.