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Gentle Giant - Acquiring the Taste CD (album) cover

ACQUIRING THE TASTE

Gentle Giant

 

Eclectic Prog

4.23 | 965 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

MrEdifus
4 stars Gentle Giant is a band that gets two extreme opinions out of most people. They are certainly very talented musicians, and take the idea of making complex rock music to its most extreme. This causes some people to love them, and some to hate them. I personally think that most of the time they make very good music, with a tendency to go overboard at times on complexity. And as for this album, I promise it's better than its cover.

The album starts off with Pantagruel's Nativity, one of my favorite songs on the album. It opens with a synth line that invokes thoughts of the sun rising. Kerry Minnear's soft, high voice contributes vocals and the song settles into various solos over a horn riff. Edge of Twilight is a shorter song featuring more of Minnear's vocals. The House, the Street, the Room is a heavier song and has Derek Shulman on lead vocals instead. At times his voice can get very grating, but he does okay on this song. The song's middle section is jazzy, with a lot of piano and saxophone, until Green comes in with a blistering guitar solo. One of the most interesting songs on this album though is Wreck. I hear it often criticized as too simple and monotonous, a lame attempt to be heavy. (These same people later complain that Gentle Giant has a habit of being too prissy and gentile at times. I wish they'd make up their mind.) Personally, I absolutely love Wreck. It's got the the lyrics of a pirate song, and a Black Sabbath-like riff you can almost headbang to. If this doesn't prove that Gentle Giant can rock with the best of them whenever they want to, I don't know what does. Black Cat is where they all get out the instruments that are non-standard to rock music and jam away, with a very dark, slinky feel to it. Plain Truth is another heavier, more straightforward song, with the electric guitar and violin layed on thick.

This is a very good album, but would probably not be the best place to start with Gentle Giant. While they would eventually put out better, this is Gentle Giant at their darkest, and possibly most abstract.

MrEdifus | 4/5 |

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