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Gentle Giant - Gentle Giant CD (album) cover


Gentle Giant


Eclectic Prog

3.95 | 1254 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars Gentle Giant debut is a beautiful surprise for the world of rock music.

1) Giant (vote 8,5/9). Great rock-blues piece. Powerful attack, hard-rock, with a sung that looks like Roger Chapman of the Family. Then it changes style and rhythm, arrive keyboard and bass solos then start meditative passage that end with epic and majestic effect; finally the piece returns to the initial rock rhythm. 2) Funny Ways (vote 8,5). First song masterpiece of that genre with the strings that will be present in almost all their major albums. This piece will remain unmatched for the beauty of the melody and for the beautiful insertion, as an intermezzo, of an instrumental part in tribal boogie style, which then becomes a triumphal march with the winds. 3) Alucard (vote 8+). Mostly instrumental piece, at the King Crimson / Pink Floyd of Atom Heart Mother style, with almost excessive production. Remarkable sound impact, powerful and threatening, with the winds, which meanwhile allow the insertion of strangers choruses. In the middle, reflexive pause, then return of the menacing tone, then new choirs, then dissonant final. 4) Is not It Quiet and Cold? (vote 7,5) Second classic piece with bows to dilute the heavy and threatening sound of the previous song. It has a relaxing, light effect: it has no instrumental crescendo, it maintains itself on the initial classical tonality, resulting slightly monotonous but is embellished with a vibraphone solo. End of the first side.

5) Nothing At All (vote 8,5/9). One does not end by amazement. Here comes the longest piece of all the good Giant discography, with excellent initial melodic part, first Genesis style acoustics, then with growing rock. There follows an instrumental jam with a large drum solo, while Minnear plays Liszt in the background. Final with return of the acoustic melody. It is a song that will have no equal in the remaining production of the group. 6 Why Not? (vote 8+)Hard-rock and blues, with Green's guitar in great dust. Medieval intermezzo with the celestial voice of Minnear, and then powerful jam rock of guitar and drums, which face each other with great rhythm. From this piece originate the following pieces of powerful rock with medieval intermezzo: Wreck (Acquiring) and Working All day (Three Friends), but they are much inferior (especially Wreck, which seems like a bad copy). 7) Queen (vote 6,5). Distorted English anthem: actually quite negligible closure.

First album and absolute masterpiece of the Gentle Giant, which will never be so powerful and epic as in Giant and Alucard; they will never be so wonderful and creative in pieces with violins like in Funny Ways; they will never be so improvised and jammed in long pieces with symphonic rock solos or rockblues as in Nothing At All and Why not. These are the only ones and the only Gentle Giant without bridle, natural, that explore every musical style without setting limits or rules. From the next album they will become less and less spontaneous and more and more harnessed in a valuable rock but very attached to formal self-imposed rules.

Vote 9+. Five stars.

jamesbaldwin | 5/5 |


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