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Manning - One Small Step... CD (album) cover




Eclectic Prog

3.58 | 61 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

5 stars This is a superb album centered around the ambitious 30 minute epic suite One Small Step... A different again album to its predecessor A Matter of Life and Death, but there again I am quickly finding out that the patterns & style of a MANNING album seem to change on an album by album basis.

The first side (in old LP terms) of the album features 4 quite varied pieces.

The opener In Swingtime which seems to deal with the subject of getting older is a quite straightforward jazzy pop rocker but lkeeps the pace and toes tapping as we get into the album.

Night Voices which follows is a quite gentle folky piece with an infectious chorus harping back to more peaceful moods and times in the styles of Al Stewart, Paul Simon and Tom Paxton.

Next we swithc up a gear to the Stadium rocker No Hiding Place! This was inspired by the Beslan children kidnapping and events. It is piece which stomps! A middle frenzied section features Electric gtr and treated sax? as they all go mad and fly about in the stereo image until brought under control, again by the rousing last verse and choruses. Phew!

Last 'short' piece is the evocative The Mexico line which features one on my favourite lyrics of the whole album From my bedroom window, a hollow moon in a red, red sky.... It is a sort of tex-mex affair of light country feel and very nicely lines up what comes next.

The One Small Step... 8 part suite is wonderful. It reminds me of the long Roy Harper One of those Days in England or an acoustic biased Supper's Ready. Eight interlinked sections explores Mans' obsession with Space travel and Colonisation. Quite biting at times but always lyrical and melodically song based. This is quite some work! It is brilliant in places and keeps up the journey and pace throughout whilst switching from Acoustic driven sections to Floyd-esque spacy bits, fiddles, saxes, flutes, mellotrons, violins/strings abound...

This is one you have to hear for yourself and then please sit down and invest some time to in order to fully appreciate its splendour!

When it was over on my first listen, I sat there for a while just taking it in!

I love this album. Highly recommended I love this artist and I have still a number of Guy Manning albums to get through yet!

Topograph | 5/5 |


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