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Gnidrolog - Lady Lake CD (album) cover




Eclectic Prog

4.06 | 333 ratings

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The Hemulen
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
5 stars This 1972 album (a very good year for prog) defines the term "lost classic". Powerful, complex, packed with emotive playing, distinctive vocals, interesting instruments and clever arrangements, it's wuite frankly nothing short of wall-to-wall genius - symphonic prog at it's very very best. Why then, are they never ever mentioned? Lord knows, but they never made it big and as a result will forever remain an obscure footnote in the history of progressive rock. Footnotes don't get much better than this though.

Opening with the powerful (if slightly dated) "I Could Never be a Soldier", the Goldring brothers and their assembled chums proceed to deliver 42 minutes of dark, soulful symphonic prog with touches of folk, jazz and so on. You know the drill. When was the last time you heard a prog album that only had influences from one genre?

With a wide base of instruments (saxophones, flute, oboe, recorder, horn, plus the usual guitardrumsbass combo) from which to weave their compositions, there's a lot of variation in the mix, which is a wonderful boon. Add to that the fact that the pieces are all very original in their style (one can compare to Van der Graaf, Gentle Giant and Jethro Tull if you like, but this was 1972 not 78 so I feel that most similarities are somewhat coincidental) and already you've got two brilliant reasons to seek out this masterpiece. If you really need a third. just look at that cover. F*ck Roger Dean! THAT'S proggy cover art!

I wish I had something bad to say about this album for the sake of balance but I really really don't. Some accuse the two short acoustic pieces of being inferior, or worse "filler". I disagree. I think they're beautiful additions and act as helpful interludes to allow the ears some recovery time before the next onslaught of wailing saxes, pounding drums and aggressive guitars. The only other criticism I've seen levelled against Gnidrolog is the vocals. Yes, they're a little high pitched at times, yes they're somewhat nasal. However, you soon get used to them and in time they become inseperable from Gnidrolog's sound. I wouldn't swap 'em for anything.

VDGG fans, fans of all dark, jazz-tinged symphonic prog - why do you not already own this?

The Hemulen | 5/5 |


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