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Tony Banks - Strictly Inc. CD (album) cover

STRICTLY INC.

Tony Banks

 

Crossover Prog

3.59 | 60 ratings

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SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator
Symphonic Team
3 stars A bit too strict maybe?

Strictly Inc. is in my opinion Tony Banks' best solo album. If this is your first encounter with Banks' solo career (which it should be as this is the best place to start) and you think that this sounds too 80's, too Pop and isn't progressive enough, then you should really forget about Banks' earlier solo albums as they are clearly "worse" in all those respects!

I have never really understod the love some people have for Banks first solo album A Curious Feeling. It was in my opinion a rather weak debut. His second, The Fugitive was far worse, though. Bankstatement and Still both had some good songs, but they were overall not very strong albums. The latter suffered from incoherence due to having too many different singers involved. One of the strong points of Strictly Inc. is that all the vocals are handled by a single vocalist. Indeed, instead of having a cast of guest musicians, there is slightly more of a band feeling here compared to previous albums. Tony himself can concentrate on playing his keyboards, leaving vocal, bass, drum and guitar duties to his band. Only Daryl Stuermer guests on a couple of tracks.

The songs themselves are not great by any means, but certainly as good as anything from previous solo albums. Some of the songs are among Banks' best songs written outside of Genesis. However, with the exception of the 17 plus minute closer, these songs are hardly lost Genesis classics or anything of the sort. This last epic song is obviously the most progressive song on this album, but also in some of the other songs there are flashes of Banks' progressive past, mostly in the shape of short keyboard passages.

This is a decent album with at least one quite good progressive song on it. Just don't expect too much from it.

SouthSideoftheSky | 3/5 |

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