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Gentle Giant - In Concert (BBC Radio 1)  CD (album) cover


Gentle Giant

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4 stars An amazing live-album, recorded in 1978 on - as far as I know - the Missing Piece Tour. "In Concert" marks Gentle Giants first appearence on British television. The songs are a mix of the Free Hand and the "The Missing Piece" era. The sound quality is rather good, you can clearly hear each instrument. On this CD the giants convince with complex songs just as the more catchy songs. For me as a huge Gentle Giant-Fan this CD is something very special for two reasons:

1.) This CD is extremly rare, it is nearly not gettable. So I'm lucky I could get this one.

2.) This reason is much more important than the first one: The live-album contains lots of songs who you usually can not find on Gentle Giant-live-recordings. These Songs are: Playing The Game, Two Weeks In Spain, Memories Of Old Days, Betcha Thought We Couldn't Do It, I'm Turning Around, For Nobody and Mountain Time.

The booklet includes a short text about Gentle Giant and its roots.

Though this live-album is not as full of atmosphere and power as for example "Playing The Fool", this CD is a must for anyone who likes great live-recordings.

Report this review (#74069)
Posted Tuesday, April 4, 2006 | Review Permalink
Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
3 stars I have mixed feelings about this one. On the one hand, the band seemed to be really clicking for this concert. The performance is tight, and the mix is nearly perfect. On the other hand, six of the ten songs on the disk are from The Missing Piece, the first truly disappointing album in this great band's catalog. I suppose it could be worse, it could have featured songs from the last two (ugh!) studio albums.

It's something of a giveaway to the band's direction that midway through the concert, Derek Shulman whines about the group's lack of popularity. Maybe that's why he turned to the dark side after GG.

Still, the older material, three songs from Free Hand plus Playing The Game are spectacular. And For Nobody the best song from The Missing Piece sounds pretty good here. The rest of the songs have some spark, certainly better than anything from the final two studio albums, but nowhere near as good as the classic material.

Report this review (#257335)
Posted Tuesday, December 22, 2009 | Review Permalink
4 stars A stunningly well recorded and played set, featuring music from "Free Hand", ""the Power and the Glory and the "Missing piece", it makes a really nice change to hear a different live set as many live recording seem to be from the same period. OK perhaps "betcha you thought " and "Mountain time" are not up to the very high standard we had grown to expect from this great band, but otherwise this is a corking set and one wonders what the encore would have been. We are left rather high and dry, with them ending this set with their worse number to date. Strangely mountain time sounds like it could have been left off "Gentle Giant", and in a sense the band has come full circle. In retrospect trying to commercialize their sound was a big mistake, but even so "The missing piece" is far from rubbish, when it is strong it is very enjoyable. This live recording proves that they were far from a spent force and were delivering the goods live. For GG fans this has to be a compulsory buy "just the same" alone would justify the price.

As for Derek's later business deals, it is clear he could recognize a winner, such a shame he was unable to turn GG into a commercial success, without compromising. In the end trying to do pop was a big mistake, even if GG remained a corking live band right up to the last bar of the last encore. This live set is worthy of slightly more than 4 stars and to GG fans its a 5. I will stick with 4 though for the general public as it would make an excellent addition to any prog music collection.

Report this review (#781710)
Posted Wednesday, July 4, 2012 | Review Permalink

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