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Anthony Phillips - The Geese And The Ghost CD (album) cover


Anthony Phillips


Symphonic Prog

4.02 | 333 ratings

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4 stars Anthony Philips - The Geese and the Ghost

At last, another symphonic prog release to tickle my fancy. Hands down, this is my subgenre of choice (me and everyone else on the site, naturally!) Anthony Phillips' Genesis heritage is immediately apparent ? he has embraced his past rather than working to move away from it, and the material from the very beginning would sit comfortably alongside Trespass, or Selling England by the Pound. Yes, I know, Philips was out of the band by the latter. But listen and you'll see what I mean. His singing even sounds a little like Peter Gabriel.

This is a true prog album. It has long bits (two multi-part epics) and short bits (the pretty little guitar interjection of 'chinese mushroom cloud'), and lots of pretty twiddly complex guitar playing. The instrumentation is beautiful and varied, and the lyrics poetic and intellectual. For those that have bought the 2008 2CD reissue version, a brief note should be made about the second disc, containing as it does a rough demo cut of 'master of time'; a truly excellent song, leaving one longing for a properly mastered version by Phillips. Big Big Train (more on THEM at a later date!!!) have created an outstanding cover version on their recent demo, which gives some idea of how this song could eventually have been left to sound.

That this bears comparison with his the work of his former band is a sign of the quality of the release. Classic genesis is one of progressive rock's most holy of grails, and to be allowed to stand in competition with it and emerge head held high is no mean feat. Ultimately, it does fall a little short of the two albums mentioned earlier, but not by as a big a margin as one would assume. This is an album deserving of a spot in ANY record collection. Put out of your heads any idea of this being simply a nice curiosity to follow the post-genesis career of an early retiree from that band, this is an exceptional album in its own right.

4.5/5, but rounded down to 4 here.

stranded_starfish | 4/5 |


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