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Galahad - Sleepers CD (album) cover

SLEEPERS

Galahad

 

Neo-Prog

3.33 | 93 ratings

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SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator
Symphonic Team
4 stars "We had it good in the eighties, everything coming up roses - we were drowning in success!" Really?

Sleepers was the album that finally realized all the potential of Galahad's early albums and it is a very strong album in its own right. The music of Galahad had developed into a hard edged Neo-Prog with some appealing Neo-Classical influences and some slight poppy touches too. This album was released in the same year as Arena's fantastic debut album Songs From The Lion's Cage, and like Arena, Galahad too opted for a more hard edged sound compared to earlier Neo-Prog bands like IQ and Marillion. Sleepers is a varied and reasonably diverse album with several longer more complex songs as well as shorter songs that range from tasteful acoustic ballads (Pictures Of Bliss) to poppy love songs (Julie Anne, Middleground) to dramatic and melodic Prog.

The brilliant opening title track is the highlight of the album and easily my favourite Galahad song of all time. This is also one of Stuart Nicholson's finest and most theatrical vocal performances. The vocals are very strong throughout the whole album and while Nicholson clearly belongs to the Fish and Peter Gabriel school of singers, he has unique tone of his own that I appreciate very much. Indeed, he is one of the best singers in said school if you ask me! He also sometimes remind me slightly of Geddy Lee of Rush!

Like in most Neo-Prog, the sound here is based on electric guitars, bass, drums, electronic keyboards and dramatic, emotional vocals but the presence of acoustic guitars and grand piano on several songs makes the sound more diverse. All instruments are played with skill, enthusiasm and confidence here but the most important factor is that the songs are all very well-written and memorable this time around.

Apart from the excellent title track, the ten minute Live And Learn and the nearly ten minute Exorcising Demons are other highlights. The opening line of the former song goes: "We had it good in the eighties, everything coming up roses - we were drowning in success!" This can hardly refer to the band themselves as they had only minor success in the 80's, as far as I know!? Indeed, it was with the present album that the band finally found some success.

Sleepers was the peak of Galahad's career and this album should be regarded as a classic in the Neo-Prog genre. It is thus essential for any fan of Neo-progressive Rock and highly recommended!

SouthSideoftheSky | 4/5 |

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