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Gentle Giant - In A Glass House CD (album) cover

IN A GLASS HOUSE

Gentle Giant

 

Eclectic Prog

4.35 | 1081 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

purplepiper
5 stars This album is pure genius. It is a very serious attempt at strange, complex, and sometimes medieval prog rock. This was my first encounter with the giant and it is still my favourite! There is so much good stuff here that it's hard to keep track of. The songs are all over the place in a good way, whirring around in an almost creepy swirl of complexity and genius. Any serious prog fan should get to know this album well, it's worth it!

'The runaway' is an awesome opener, beggining with the rhythmic sound of glass breaking. strange, yet appropriate. The song progresses into prog glory with complex melodies and varied instrumentation. There are even medieval chorus sections where recorders can be heard carrying a truly medieval melody! The keyboards sound good too! there's even a vibe solo, which adds even more of the strange gg tinge that I can't get enough of. Even the lyrics are intriguing! I honestly love everything about this song, it has everything I love about gentle giant! A truly excellent track!

'An inmate's lullaby' is done entirely with percussion, a very strange track indeed, even in gentle giant's catalogue. It has a very childish, almost disturbing percussion melody which is truly bizarre! The song is about someone in a mental hospital, and the music fits to the tee. This song shows just how strange gentle giant can get when crank up the strangeness meter. It's a highly original track that adds diversity to the album, which is always good! Indispensable!

'Way of life' is a very energetic track, opening with someone shouting 'go!'. The following opening melody is highly infectious and very catchy! this is the fastest track on the album, and was my favourite the first time I heard the album. By now, I love every track though! well, the song progresses through the fast parts to an uplifting churchy keyboard part that sounds a bit medieval. Eventually, the song returns to the opening theme and the song ends with a very mysterious 'droning' keyboard that disappears into enigmatic oblivion. At first I thought it inappropriate, but after repeated listens, I realized I liked the feeling of uncertainty it created. Another superb track!

'Experience' is one of the most complex gentle giant songs out there! I'm well seasoned in counting music measures, but this song trips even me up a bit in one part! It's very medieval sounding and very busy, and for those of you that like these qualities, this song will be a real treat! It even includes a 'rocking out' section to mix things up a bit. The vocals in this part are a little bit 'sharp' on the recording, but it doesn't bother me much any more...just don't have the radio too loud when you get to this part. There are more medieval chorus parts to be found on this song, similar to those on 'the runaway'. A gg classic, and a true progressive rock song!

'A reunion' is a very pleaseant track, perfectly capturing the feeling that one would have when meeting an old friend by chance. The violin on this track is gorgeous, and the bass is perfect. A short, yet sweet track, adding more diversity to an already diverse album. I didn't give it much merit initially because of its short length and relatively simple construction, but the fact is, this is a beautiful song! It fits perfectly on this album and i'd listen to it anytime! The lyrics are also quite good for my tastes!

'In a glass house' is yet another superb track to finish the album, and is quite propulsive. It starts out with some interesting instrumentation (violin and sax...not uncommon in their earlier career) and has the guitar playing the harmonic pitches. It's quite interesting sounding. The melody is particularly good on this song, as it always seems to get stuck in my head, never letting me forget about the album. It's a good thing to save such a memorable track for last! This track also has some 'rocking out' sections which fit here even better than they did on 'experience'. There is also some unusual syncopation and phrasing in one part which is quite fun to listen to! A varied, interesting, and uniqure track! A fine closer for a fine album!

over all, this album simply is a gentle giant masterpiece! It is unique in their catalogue and holds well as a whole album. Each piece fits well with the others and holds up well on its own. No weak points, plenty of strong ones! The definitive gentle giant album! This album is a fine place to start if you want to discover the greatness that is gentle giant! This album is the essence of gentle giant...a progressive rock masterpiece. 5/5

purplepiper | 5/5 |

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