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Steve Hillage - Fish Rising CD (album) cover


Steve Hillage


Canterbury Scene

4.12 | 451 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars Steve Hillage's solo album reminds me of Chris Squire's major solo album; both contain facets of their parent band's sound (Gong for Hillage, Yes for Squire), yet tweak the sound enough so that there wasn't a ''Son of ...''. It's tempting to believe FISH RISING is ''SON OF RADIO GNOME INVISIBLE PART X'', especially considering that Miquette Giraudy, Gilli Smyth, Didier Malherbe, Mike Howlett, Tim Blake and Pierre Moerlen all contribute.

I'll admit that the psychedelic aspect of Gong is carried here; after all, Hillage's guitar work did help construct that unique Gong sound. But the mysticism, wit, whimsy and to an extent, the humour is not as present here compared to a pure Gong album. The two long numbers, ''Solar Musick Suite'' and ''Aftaglid'', carry the psychedelic jamming that Gong's YOU album, but don't quite have that Gong touch. They stand firm in their own rights if you can sit through them in full.

''Salmon Song'' is the best song here as Hillage delivers rapid-fire guitar lines all throughout the piece. But, it is Lindsay Cooper's appearance here that steals the show; her bassoon lines make me feel like I'm actually watching the salmon swim upstream in a forest river. The two shorter numbers are pretty much filler, even if ''Fish'' is a goofy track that would have fit on YOU. The bonus ''Pentagrammaspin'' is in the same vein as most of the album but shorter; makes me wonder why it wasn't included on the original album besides the time constraint issue.

FISH RISING doesn't really capture that Cantebury scene aura, but psychedelic lovers would find this most appealing. Gong fans such as myself will find it good, but the whimsy of the RADIO GNOME INVISIBLE is missing here. It still dazzles and sparkles in the same instrumental sense that Gong is known for.

Sinusoid | 3/5 |


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