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WILL-O-THE WISP

Will-O-The-Wisp

Psychedelic/Space Rock


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Will-O-The-Wisp Will-o-the Wisp album cover
3.76 | 27 ratings | 4 reviews | 19% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection


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Studio Album, released in 1999

Songs / Tracks Listing


1. Silent Thoughts - Part 1 (1:18)
2. Elbereth (Lonely Queen) (5:34)
3. A Sign Or Α Smile (4:54)
4. Hang Οn Τo Α Dream (03:21)
5. Summer Of Life (5:04)
6. It's Time... (5:35)
7. Flying Over The Dawn (4:18)
8. Vision (6:07)
9. Silent Thoughts - Part 2 (1:16)

Total Time (37:27)

Lyrics

Search WILL-O-THE-WISP Will-o-the Wisp lyrics

Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians


- Takis Barbagalas / Electric & Accoustic Guitar
- Aggelos Gerakitis / Vocals
- Dina Nassi / Hammond, Piano, Rhodes
- Costas Pagonas / Bass
- Nikos Manousopoulos / Drums, Percussion
- Nikos Chalikias / Flute

Guests :
- Sofia Rapti / Vocals
- Giouli Laska / Cello


Releases information

The album released on cd digipack and on vinyl with double cover (Limited Edition 800 copies)

All titles written by Will-O-The-Wisp except "Hang on to a Dream" by Tim Hardin
Words by Aggelos Gerakitis
Produced by Action Records
Recorded and mixed at Action Studio, Autum 1989
Mixed by Will-O-The-Wisp and Aris Christou
Engineered by Aris Christou

Cover by Tim White
Inside photo by Melanie Merges-Dimitriou
Artwork and Design by Th. Paraskevopoulos

Thanks to anduan for the addition
and to anduan for the last updates
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WILL-O-THE-WISP Will-o-the Wisp ratings distribution


3.76
(27 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(19%)
19%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(48%)
48%
Good, but non-essential (26%)
26%
Collectors/fans only (7%)
7%
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)
0%

WILL-O-THE-WISP Will-o-the Wisp reviews


Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by ClemofNazareth
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Prog Folk Researcher
4 stars Here’s a virtually unknown band who managed to put together a sound that is sometimes neo-progressive (particularly the guitars), sometimes retro (mostly the keyboards), and with a thread of psychedelic energy, especially in the form of the male vocals. Most of their albums are out-of-print, available sporadically from resellers and pretty much nowhere else including the band’s own website (although their last two can still be had there). I suspect someone is going to pick up the masters someday and reissue this and their sophomore record though, because this is well-formed and authentic progressive music that deserves to be widely available.

This debut album was recorded in the late nineties but the sound is older than that, drawing on any number of seventies British proggers like Curved Air and some of the more ethereal and folksy minor acts of the early seventies like Fuchsia and Flibbertigibbet. There’s more than a little Canterbury here as well, considering how melodic all the arrangements tend to be.

Lead vocalist Aggelos Gerakitis has a rich sound, and the hint of an accent in his all-English vocals lends itself quite well to the understated tempo of all the songs here. This is somewhat spaced-out music, but closer to Roxy Music than Pink Floyd for sure. Jazz singer Sofia Rapti is a guest artist on the album, and she tends to complement Gerakitis by harmonizing or by otherwise offering contrast in several duets.

Keyboardist Dina Nassi plays all manner of keys, including a Fender, fat and spacey Hammond and even electric and acoustic piano. While the band features a prominent guitarist in Takis Barbagalas, the overriding musical footprint comes in the form of keyboards on virtually every track.

The whole album seems to flow together as a single, lengthy and cohesive work rather than simply a collection of tunes. The breaks between tracks are brief or nonexistent for the most part, and except for a brief fadeout ending to “Vision” the last half of the album is a contiguous piece of music. My one complaint is that the opening and closing two-part song “Silent Thoughts” with its gorgeous piano solo is all too brief and would have resulted in a much more robust work had one or both parts of this tune been extended into a lengthy classical piano composition.

But that’s a minor quibble, and for the most part this is a great body of work that forms an impressive introduction for a band that would go on to record three other progressively more complex and richer albums before they faded back into obscurity. Like I said, this is a lost gem that needs to be rediscovered and reissued by someone; this is the kind of gentle and melodic music that most prog lovers would be happy to have in their collection. Here’s hoping that happens soon. Four stars.

peace

Review by ghost_of_morphy
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Man, I love this album. Be warned, though. Retro is what this album is all about.

The most striking thing here is the keys. Expect energetic keyboard parts, but don't expect anything modern or innovative. Honestly, Nassi hits the Hammond and the Rhodes with the same energy and excitement that a young Tony Kaye distinguished himself with in Yes and on the first Flash album. If that's to your taste, you'll love the keys.

The other thing that will really grab your attention is the vocals. Gerakitis delivers some fine vocal performances on his own but when he pairs with Rapti, well.... WOW! Their harmonies twist around each other and dwell on rarely used thirds. It makes tracks like Elbereth and Hang on to a Dream mindblowing.

Anyhow, this is modern spacey, trippy music. The excesses of the genre have been jettisoned, but the core is delightfully intact and engaging. So if you don't mind your psych prog stripped down to it's essentials, you'll love this.

4 stars. Everybody should at least sample this to decide if it's to their taste.

Review by Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars I have Tom Ozric to thank for this amazing discovery. The first time I heard it I got pretty excited because they really reminded me of VIOLETA DE OUTONO ("Volume 7"). Both bands feature lots of Hammond organ floating in the soundscape much like what Richard Wright used to do.This band is from Greece but sing in English, and the music is very melodic and tasteful.They dedicate this album to "The new born child and J.R.R.Tolkien".

"Silent Thoughts-Part 1" is the short intro track dominated by piano. "Elbereth (Lonely Queen)" is led by those floating organ sounds with male vocals and light drums. Female vocals add some support too. A tasteful guitar solo before 3 1/2 minutes followed by flute. "A Sign Or A Smile" like the previous track reminds me so much of VIOLETA DE OUTONO, even the vocals. The guitar sounds great before 2 1/2 minutes with some good organ runs a minute later. "Hang On To A Dream" features both male and female vocals. Drums and a fuller sound follow the intro. This contrast continues. Cello before 2 minutes. "Summer Of Life" opens with vocals, organ, drums and bass.The vocals and sound get fuller before 1 1/2 minutes as the contrast continues. Nice guitar before 4 1/2 minutes as the ever-present organ continues.

"It's Time..." opens with a pastoral soundscape including flute. Organ and vocals at 1 1/2 minutes.The tempo picks up 3 1/2 minutes in. Nice bass. Guitar solo 5 minutes in. "Flying Over The Dawn" is a mellow track with organ and flute coming in before 1 1/2 minutes. Male and female vocals too. The drums are more prominant in the next song called "Vision".The organ and vocals stand out as well. Flute 3 minutes in. "Silent Thoughts-Part 2" is like a reprise of the opening song as we get lots of piano to end the album.

I have to echo what ghost of morphy says at the start of his review "Man, I love this album". This record and "Volume 7" from VIOLETA DE OUTONO simply make me feel good, they're like a "pick me up" really. Both are highly recommended.

Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Greek band, formed in Athens in 1997 by veteran Greek musicians.They derived their name from the obsure ghost lights seen by travellers during the night, found in many traditional Folklore tales.Will-o-the Wisp's original crew included singer Angelos Gerakitis, guitarist Takis Barbagalas, bassist Kostas Pagonas, female keyboardist Dina Nassi, flutist Nikos Chalikias and drummer Nikos Manousopoulos.Their first self-titled output was captured at the studios of the legendary Greek label Action Records with Sofia Rapti helping out on vocals and Giouli Laska guesting on cello.The album was released in the opening week of 1999, both on vinyl and CD formats.

Will-o-the Wisp played a melodic, British-styled Psychedelic/Progressive Rock with a certain vintage aura as performed by acts like CARAVAN, MARSUPILAMI and CRESSIDA.Lots of dreamy organ parts, some decent but mellow jams and lovely flute lines are the basic elements of their music, which contains also plenty of ethereal vocal tunes as delivered by Angelos Gerakitis, supported by Rapti in several moments.The guitar work is splendid with downtempo, sharp solos and the presence of Hammond organ brings nostalgic memories to mind.Despite the short length of the tracks, there is still much goin' on in each of them and instrumental variety is always present.They remind at times of fellow compatriots PETE & ROYCE with their instant 70's offerings and the heavy use of analog keybards, always linked with British Psychedelic Rock.In general the album follows the more melodic lines of the 70's, but there are still heavy amounts of energy throughout, especially in the jamming parts with the good interaction between the guitars and organ.Light guitar/flute interplays complete a very good work, filled with retro emotions and decent executions.

Interesting first album by Will-o-the Wisp.The Greek scene was not known for producing original groups, so do not expect some very genuine stuff.Expect though some very emotional, well-performed Psych/Prog with constant blinks to the past and anyone after the early days of British Prog will fall in love with the album.Warmly recommended.

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