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Rick Wakeman

Symphonic Prog

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Rick Wakeman The Gospels album cover
3.18 | 33 ratings | 2 reviews | 9% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 1987

Songs / Tracks Listing

Disc 1 (43:16)
- The Gospel According To St. Matthew :
1. Part One: The Baptism (4:25)
2. Part Two: The Welcoming (4:55)
3. Part Three: The Sermon On The Mount (8:24)
4. Part Four: The Lord's Prayer (3:40)
- The Gospel According To St. Mark :
5. Part One: The Way (3:49)
6. Part Two: The Road To Jerusalem (6:28)
7. Part Three: Trial And Error (8:00)
8. Part Four: Galilee (3:35)

Disc 2 (43:17)
- The Gospel According To St. Luke :
9. Part One: The Gift (5:35)
10. Part Two: The Magnificat (4:20)
11. Part Three: Welcome A Star (5:07)
12. Part Four: Power (4:26)
- The Gospel According To St. John :
13. Part One: The Word (2:48)
14. Part Two: The Hour (5:29)
15. Part Three: The Children Of Mine (14:17)
16. Part Four: The Last Verse (1:15)

Total time 86:33

Line-up / Musicians

- Rick Wakeman / keyboards, synths, church organ *, electronic percussion, composer, arranger

- Ramon Remedios / tenor vocals
- The Eton College Chapel Choir / chorus vocals
- Ralph Allwood / choir conductor
- Robert Powell / narration

* Recorded at Camberley United Reformed Church

Releases information

2xLP Stylus Music ‎- SMR 729 (1987, UK)

2xCD Stylus Music ‎- SMD 729 (1987, UK)

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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RICK WAKEMAN The Gospels ratings distribution

(33 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(9%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(18%)
Good, but non-essential (48%)
Collectors/fans only (18%)
Poor. Only for completionists (6%)

RICK WAKEMAN The Gospels reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars As seen on TV

"The Gospels" is a double album collection based on the four gospels contained in the New Testament of the Bible. Wakeman's religious awakening was not quite as overt as the more recent Neal Morse, but he still came out with this album and his "Say Yes" book.

Each of the four LP sides is dedicated to a gospel, providing a high level overview of the contents of each. The line up for the album gives an immediate indication of the type of music which can be expected. Robert Powell, who played Jesus in Franco Zeffirelli's "Jesus of Nazareth" provides the narration, while tenor Ramon Remerios, who also sings on Wakeman's "The new gospels", is the principal vocalist. Wakeman of course plays all the keyboards, and indeed all the instrumentation. The line up is completed by The Eton Collage Choir. The sequencing of the tracks is rather confused, and does not necessarily follow chronologically, something which would be remedied on "The new gospels".

To dispel any remaining doubts, this is not a prog album. The tracks may be long and sometimes intricate, but they are always stately and performed with a distinct reverence. The performance is best described as an oratorio, Wakeman's keyboards generally providing background orchestration.

The main weakness of the album is in the production, which is a real pity as the actual compositions are of a high quality. Wakeman's keyboards sound cheap, as if he was using one of those synthesiser keyboards you can pick up from a catalogue shop for next to nothing. The choir is distant and lacking in depth of sound. This is clearly through no fault on their part though, but purely as a result of the way the album was recorded. Only tenor singer Ramon Remerios comes across in the way Wakeman undoubtedly intended, his fine voice adding a superbly emotional dimension to the album.

The gatefold LP sleeve is tasteful, with full lyrics and performer credits, let down only by the needless, indeed tasteless, banner on the front proclaiming "As seen on TV"!

Rick himself was reportedly not entirely happy with the finished product, returning to it a few years later and creating "The new gospels". The new production represents a significant improvement over this release, rendering "The gospels" largely superfluous.

Latest members reviews

4 stars Obviously the religous content did not appeal to a lot of people but there's not much one can do about narrow-mindness. That said, I thought the album was very, very good. The narration by Mr Powell, siinging by the wonderful Mr Remedios and of course the multi- talented Mr Wakeman were all ex ... (read more)

Report this review (#27516) | Posted by | Thursday, May 26, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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