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Steve Hillage - Fish Rising CD (album) cover


Steve Hillage


Canterbury Scene

4.10 | 473 ratings

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4 stars FISH RISING is a gorgeous album that will delight all Gong freaks. Virtually the whole band (as it was in late 1974) appears on it, and their playing is magnificent. The album is pervaded by a feeling of great urgency. For the first time in his career, Hillage got the chance to do an album of his own, and you can tell that he was thinking: 'Now or never!' Although FISH RISING supposedly covers esoteric and mystical themes (to my relief, the lyrics are hard to make out), it's suffused with energy. Hillage's own guitar 'embroideries' (I don't know how to describe the myriads of notes he weaves) dominate the entire record, but they are cushioned throughout by Tim Blake's bubbly synths and Didier Malherbe's flute and saxes. The rhythm section (which consists of Pierre Moerlen and Mike Howlett) sounds supremely energetic, and there are a few special treats, such as Dave Stewart's furious organ solos and Lindsay Cooper's impish bassoon which suddenly pops up in "The Salmon Song". All of these wonderful sonic details are more clearly audible than ever on the remastered version (with fascinating bonus material) which appeared in 2007. I don't know what to make of the fact that FISH RISING (like THE FLYING TEAPOT, HATFIELD AND THE NORTH and many other classic Canterbury albums) was recorded at the Manor in Kidlington (Oxfordshire), just a few miles from where I now happen to live - it just seems an enormous distance in time...
fuxi | 4/5 |


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