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Gong 2032 album cover
3.15 | 151 ratings | 11 reviews | 11% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 2009

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. City Of Self Fascination (6:04)
2. Digital Girl (4:23)
3. How To Stay Alive (8:06)
4. Escape Control Delete (7:58)
5. Yoni Poem (2:09)
6. Dance With The Pixies (4:37)
7. Wacky Baccy Banker (8:21)
8. The Year 2032 (5:39)
9. Robo-Warriors (3:00)
10. Guitar Zero (4:55)
11. The Gris Gris Girl (6:29)
12. Wave And A Particle (2:05)
13. Pinkle Ponkle (4:35)
14. Portal (7:08)

Total Time: 75:29

Line-up / Musicians

- Gilli Smyth / vocals
- Daevid Allen / vocals, guitars, co-producer
- Steve Hillage / guitar, co-producer
- Miquette Giraudy / synthesizer
- Theo Travis / saxophone, flute
- Mike Howlett / bass
- Chris Taylor / drums

- Didier Malherbe / doudouk (3,13), soprano sax (8), flute (11)
- Yuji Katsui / electric violin (4,14)
- Elliet Mackrell / violin (6)
- Stefanie Petrik / backing vocals (1-4,6,10)

Releases information

Artwork: Daevid Allen

2xLP+CD G-Wave ‎- AAGWLPX001 (2009, UK) Limited edition w/ bonus CD album

CD G-Wave ‎- AAGWCD001 (2009, UK)

Thanks to Rivertree for the addition
and to BaldJean for the last updates
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GONG 2032 ratings distribution

(151 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(11%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(32%)
Good, but non-essential (42%)
Collectors/fans only (13%)
Poor. Only for completionists (3%)

GONG 2032 reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Sean Trane
3 stars The return of Hillage in the band was written maybe as early as the Gong Unconvention in the winter of 2006 in Amsterdam's Melkweg, but it obviously took time to mature as in early summer of 08, Steve joined Gong on stage for two shows in London with a couple new songs, but it would be another big year before this album would see the light of day in the fall of of 09. Sooo Steve and wife Lmiquette Giraudy came back and in terms of the line-up, if the Daevid & Gilly pair are obvious, Malherbe is only a guest, reoplaced by now-usual Theo Travis, the drum stool is still under Chris Taylor and veteran Howlett on bass. Looking at the credits of the songs, it is unsurprisingly mostly an affair of the Steve/Miquette and Daevid/Gilly pairs that dominate the songwriting, even though the girls collaborate on three tracks throughout the album.

2032 is a long (almost filled to the brim) album, made from 14 songs, a few lasting between 7 and 8 minutes, and by the time you're nearing the end of the disc, it is almost 2031, so this album is aptly titled, especially if you stopped for loo emergencies. The least that can be said is that all tracks arewell-made and finely crafted, filled with a certain kind of lunacy (an updated version of early Hillage solo delirium and Daevidian madness)

Well the Pothead Pixie will find the usual Planet Gong universe, but in a violuntary updated manner, both musically, butr lyrically as well. Tracks like Digital Girl and Escape Control Delete are obvious shots at modern technology, but more annoying are the purposely light- handed pop songwriting, sometimes bordering on the silly, but not in the hilarious 70's style. The two distinctive signature lead guitars are generally working well together, Daevid's glissando solos matching Steve's delay-saturated riffs. More interesting is to try to pick out the Malherbe wind intervbention from Travis'. The album is extremely wordy with only one near-instumental (Guitar Zero) and sometimes reaches almost Kraftwerk-style of electro-pop (in Robo-Warriors) and sometimes the group sounds like another Tentacle. Overal, the most frustrating thing about this album is that such a talented, round and jazzy drummer such as Chris Taylor is held in such a binary role, no doubt a decision coming from Hillage, an inheritance from his System Taha 7 days, which are still all too fresh nor to reappear at places.

Personally I thought that Zero To Infinitea was a much worthier album in the Radio Gnome Invisible saga, but it was also playing much safer. 2032 is full of risk-taking, which is always a double edged sword, but these quirky songs might seem fresh and even bring a new blood in the Gong planet, I'm not sure that they'll age as gracefully as the previous material. Personally I consider this album as quite a deception, but let's see how it ages with successive listens, which obviously won't be as frequent after the first two months.

Review by poslednijat_colobar
3 stars Old-fashioned, but highly attractive

2032 is the latter album from Radio Gnome Trylogy by british Canterbury scene band Gong. This album can be considered as a quite experimental album with all these variations in genres. The title of the album refers to year of 2032, which was mentioned in some of the earlier recordings about the planet Gong. This is the year, when the planet Gong finally make contact with Earth. I'm not quite familiar with this wonderful band Gong, but I'll change this in near future, exactly because of this reunion album of the classic line-up. Despite, not being something special 2032 reveals strong 60's psychedelic influence in very good manner. It's well-forgotten way of creating music and that's increases the value of this recording. Regretfully, I can't give it 4 stars, because it contains moments for 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 stars, so it will be 3,3 stars. Highly recommended for 60's psychedelic and experimental lovers.

Highlights in 2032:

1. Wacky Baccy Banker

2. Portal

3. The Year 2032

Review by snobb
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Very nice surprise - new Gong's album, and not just Gong, but "classic early GonG", it's a big difference! If Pierre Moerlene's Gong after few first strong albums became a funny money maker very soon, Allen's Gong (and related projects) still often can attract listener with some good music.

There you can hear Daevid himself plus Trilogy-time guitarist Steve Hillage, bassist Mike Howlett and even Gilli Smyth's whisperings! It's true Gong, even if few decades is gone!

And from very first sounds you will realize that they sound as true Gong! Spacey dreamy airy electronic sounds, some nice guitar pieces, plenty of violin and characteristic Gilli's spoken vocals ("whisperings"). Album is long, but no way boring. Interesting, that musicians introduced some risky elements to their music, as almost hip-hop vocals, some modern, almost danceable rhythms, Santana-like Latin guitar,etc.

Possibly, all music doesn't sound such authentic, as in early 70-s ( no strange, isn't it?), but they doesn't sound as self-parody, or as self-selling attraction as well. I think all this album could be characterised as slightly modernised Gong Trilogy's sound for the new millennium. They will hardly find new listeners with this album, but from another hand it is really great release for old fans. And great not only as souvenir or nostalgic listening, no - it's real album with new music.

My rating is 3,25.

Review by Rune2000
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Gong is back and the band is in great shape! Since I haven't heard any of the Allen albums since the 1974 Radio Gnome Invisible Vol. 3 - You I had no idea what to expect from this incarnation of Gong after 35 years! Therefore an open minded approach seemed to be the best way to tackle this material.

2032 might not be a complete masterpiece of an album but it's highly enjoyable and the time goes by very quickly with it on the playlist. The band tries a few new approaches to the music where at one point we even get something that resembles rap vocals from Daevid Allen. Other styles we get to hear are Hard Rock and even electronica! This combination might put most people off due to the lack of a clear direction but Gong has never been a linear act and following them requires the listener to accept whatever new addition to the sound the band decides to incorporate next.

There are some questionable choices regarding some particular song arrangements that have already been mentioned in other reviews but that doesn't distract me from the overall feel and flow of this album. The only really horrendous moments for me were the two 2 minute tracks titled Yoni Poem and Wave And A Particle that come off as incoherent rambling by Gilli Smyth which I end up skipping through whenever listening to 2032. The band finally gets back to the earlier music style towards the end of the album and we actually get a few neat moments that resemble the great material from Vol.3. Still it's not enough to make this release into an excellent performance.

Even though I realize that Gong has never been a linear act I think that this release would have been better if the band skipped all of their attempts at sounding hip and modern and instead just did what they did so well back in the day. After all, it's unlikely that this music was composed to attract any new fans since the only ones who would ever know of this album's existence are the people who have already heard their '70s albums.

***** star songs: City Of Self Fascination (6:04)

**** star songs: Digital Girl (4:23) How To Stay Alive (8:06) Escape Control Delete (7:58) Wacky Baccy Banker (8:21) The Year 2032 (5:39) Guitar Zero (4:55) The Gris Gris Girl (6:29) Pinkle Ponkle (4:35) Portal (7:08)

*** star songs: Dance With The Pixies (4:37) Robo-Warriors (3:00)

** star songs: Yoni Poem (2:09) Wave And A Particle (2:05)

Review by SaltyJon
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars So last year when this album came out, I was incredibly excited. Almost the entire "greatest" Gong lineup (in my opinion, at least) were releasing a new album tying into the Radio Gnome Invisible Trilogy! Naturally, I HAD to pre-order the album so I'd get it right around when it was released. I've been listening to the album semi-regularly since then, and while it is good I must say it is a bit of a letdown. It's still got some of the Gong zaniness I love, but something's missing, and the band decided to make up for that missing bit by making the album just about as long as it could be (75 minutes!). Unfortunately, the quantity of material almost works against the album. There are some tracks I would have specifically cut to make it a bit shorter (namely the Gilli Smyth solo bits, I like them on the RGI trilogy but here they're unexciting). So far I've managed to say why I don't like the album, I suppose I should move on to why I DO like it. Most of the non-Gilli tracks are anything from good to great; generally the longest songs were my favorite, especially "Escape Control Delete", "How to Stay Alive" (Daevid Allen is secretly a rapper as well, apparently) and "Portal". Most of the members don't show their age very much (especially Daevid Allen, I'm pretty sure he could keep making music for the next 50 years and not sound any worse). Steve's back with his great guitar playing, which is a plus to any album. Like everyone else, I'm sure, I miss Pierre Moerlen's drumming on the album, though. Unfortunately he was taken from us too early.

So because of the excessive length and the few undesirable tracks, I don't think this is a good starting point to the wonderful planet of Gong, but if you like their style in general you'd probably enjoy the album. As of now it's getting three stars from me. I think that's the most fitting rating for it (Good, but not essential).

Latest members reviews

3 stars 2032 is another charming release from the kings of crazy, Gong. This release is yet another instalment of the infamous "Radio Gnome Trilogy". Here we find out that in the year 2032 the Pot Head Pixies will make contact with planet earth and teach human beings "How to survive without killing th ... (read more)

Report this review (#928071) | Posted by The Mystical | Sunday, March 10, 2013 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Much anticipated recent album from the 'classic' line-up of this most unique of bands. All the ingredients are there. Spiralling guitar lines courtesy of Mr. Hillage, space whispery from Gilli Smyth, tales of Radio Gnomes & Octave Doctors from the irrepressible Daevid Allen.....but (there's o ... (read more)

Report this review (#292118) | Posted by raggleman | Tuesday, July 27, 2010 | Review Permanlink

2 stars Now i really didnt like this album..i mean REALLY didnt like it, and its nothing personal to the band after all this is my first abum by Gong, and it really wont put me off buying any of their other albums, this one just felt very annoying and i just couldnt get into it no matter how much i tried ... (read more)

Report this review (#289874) | Posted by FarBeyondProg | Saturday, July 10, 2010 | Review Permanlink

4 stars GonG are back! And this time for real - there's enough of (one of the) original line-ups to truly say this is utterly "GonG" - not Planet Gong, New York Gong, Gongmaison etc.. etc.. And this is truly a cracking album that rewards multiple listens. I had to listen to it lots very rapidly in or ... (read more)

Report this review (#252937) | Posted by PinkPangolin | Thursday, November 26, 2009 | Review Permanlink

2 stars Well what can I say, this certainly had the potential to be a good record. After all it is as close to a full classic line up as is possible, minis Hi T. Moonweed of course. This missing member should have tipped me off, but more of that later. In some ways it works although the music is admit ... (read more)

Report this review (#250616) | Posted by burgersoft777 | Saturday, November 14, 2009 | Review Permanlink

3 stars This album far exceeded hopes or expectations. Having said that, it is the first Gong material since 1975 to involve all the most creative and accomplished Gong members (in my opinion), albeit without Pierre Moerlen sadly. That team always has for a long time had the potential to return together ... (read more)

Report this review (#242346) | Posted by Dragontrouser | Thursday, October 1, 2009 | Review Permanlink

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