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CACTUS CHOIR

Dave Greenslade

Crossover Prog


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Dave Greenslade Cactus Choir album cover
3.53 | 69 ratings | 8 reviews | 19% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 1976

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Pedro's Party (3:37)
2. Gettysberg (3:57)
3. Swings and Roundabouts (4:20)
4. Time Takes my Time (6:50)
5. Forever and Ever (3:38)
6. Cactus Choir (6:14) :
- a) The Rider(2:52)
- b) Greeley and the rest(2:00)
- c) March at Sunset (1:22)
7. Country Dance (5:30)
8. Finale (8:36)

Total Time: 42:42

Line-up / Musicians

- Dave Greenslade ‎/ piano, clavinet, synths (ARP, Solina String Ensemble, Crumar Stringman, Moog), Fender Rhodes, Hohner Electra, Hammond, Mellotron, vibes, voice box, vocals (4), composer, co-producer

With:
- Steve Gould / vocals (2,6)
- Lissa Gray / vocals (4)
- Mick Grabham / guitar (4)
- Bill Jackman / bass flute & bass clarinet (8)
- Tony Reeves / bass (1,2,6,8)
- Dave Markee / bass (3,4), percussion (3)
- John Perry / bass (7)
- Simon Phillips / drums, percussion
- Martin Ford / conductor (8)
- Simon Jeffes / orchestration (8)

Releases information

Artwork: Roger Dean

LP Warner Bros. Records ‎- K56306 (1976, UK)
LP BGO Records ‎- BGOLP2001 (2016, UK) Remastered by Andrew Thompson

CD Angel Air Records ‎- SJPCD433 (2014, Europe)
CD Belle Antique ‎- BELLE 142304 (2014, Japan) Remastered by Karl Adams

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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DAVE GREENSLADE Cactus Choir ratings distribution


3.53
(69 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(19%)
19%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(39%)
39%
Good, but non-essential (38%)
38%
Collectors/fans only (4%)
4%
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)
0%

DAVE GREENSLADE Cactus Choir reviews


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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Alucard
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars The first Solo record from Dave Grenslade sounds like Greenslade and is a beautiful record with (I agree with Steve) the most beautiful Roger Dean Cover. This is one of the records which got competely lost, like so many, in the begining Punk/New wave period and has to my knowledge never been republished.
Review by greenback
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars David Greenslade started here a band owning his full name: David Greenslade instead of Greenslade. He plays all the keyboards, and he hired some musicians to play bass and drums: the refined drums are provided here by Simon Phillips. There are no guitars, except a very low profile one on "Time Takes my Time". The keyboards consist in electric piano, clavinet, organ, piano, mellotron and moog, among others. Greenslade still sometimes sounds like Rick Wakeman, but a bit less than on the "Time & tide" album. The album is still quite progressive, and there are many original keyboards explorations. On the first track of side 2, Greenslade plays a slow wah-wah organ, quite sounding like Caravan's "In the land of grey an pink". The last track has an impressive orchestra playing a dramatic part suited for a movie soundtrack.
Review by Tom Ozric
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars The band GREENSLADE ceased to exist by 1976, but main instigator and namesake Dave Greenslade put together another project and released 'Cactus Choir', his first 'solo' LP. Again, lovingly presented in a stupendous Roger Dean artwork (Titled 'The Jade Sea', from memory). To be honest, there's not much difference with the compositions here from his previous band, and his core 'backing' band consisted of Tony Reeves once again (on Bass Guitar, who had ventured into a line-up of CURVED AIR), the mightily impressive session-ace Simon Phillips on Drums/Percussion, and various guests helping out, most notably Bassist John G Perry (on the track 'Country Dance') and lead-vocals on 2 tracks by ex-RARE BIRD singer Steve Gould. The production is very warm and professional indeed. I'm puzzled as to why this is lumped in with the 'Crossover Prog' sub-genre ?? It fits in well with Symphonic Prog. Anyways, the album is made up of mostly instrumental material, with Gould singing beautifully in the catchy Prog-Pop song 'Gettysburg', and the middle section of the excellent title-song, and Greenslade himself handling the mic for the bluesy 'Time Takes my Time', which may have been a slight mistake, but the soprano backing vox of Lissa Gray raises the quality of the tune up a bit. As you would expect, Greenslade utilises no less than 10 Keyboards, and the prowess of the tight rhythm section calls for attention. Best tracks would have to be Cactus Choir (6.14) and Finale (8.36), but overall it is a highly recommended album. 4 stars.
Review by ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars I have never been a devoted "Greenslade" fan.

Their music was far from being original and none of their albums scored better than three stars IMHHO. Still, I was curious to figure out how this good musician would start his "solo" career.

To tell the truth, the result is quite average. In terms of prog, there are hardly great moments to retain. Some confidential bluesy stuff like "Time Takes My Time" is the best you can grab from this album. Nothing too fancy: just a good song with bluesy roots.

One of the best track is by all means the instrumental "Forever and Ever". At least it features some great and passionate keyboards play (which we all would have expected from the first second of this album).

Fortunately, this album ends up on a better way than it all started. I wouldn't tell you that all of a sudden we are faced with a masterpiece, but at least the great keys being played during the title track are sufficient to raise the interest of this album.

Basically, nothing really changed in comparison with his band's work. This first "solo" album is decent, even enjoyable at times. But don't expect too much from this "Cactus Choir" because you might be disappointed.

As far as I am concerned, three stars are the maximum rate I can provide. And I'm generous to be honest. A track as " Country Dance" would preferably be skipped from this work.

The long closing number ("Finale") is by far the most interesting one. In terms of prog, one gets a great keys feel (which was expected from the opening). It sufficiently shows how good a keyboardist Dave IS. Too bad that his writing abilities were not on on par with his great talents as a keyboards player.

A good album. Three stars.

Review by b_olariu
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars 3.5 star really

Dave Greenslade is to me one of the most unnoticed and unfairly forgotten keyboard player in prog music. What he done with Greenslade is absolutely great to my ears, I'm a big fan of this band, not to mention his contribution with Colloseum in his early career. After disbanding Greenslade in mid '70 after 4 superb albums he decided to go solo under his full name Dave Greenslade. The first offer coming in 1976 named Cactus choir, the album graced but one of the best Roger Dean art works ever made on an prog album. With this release Mr. Greenslade move into a more gentle, surrealistic teritory then on his previous band, but aswell keeping a progressive attitude on entire album. Helping hand here is offered by omni present excellent drumer Simon Philips, world renowed bassist John Perry and few more names. The music as I said is gentle, delicate smooth and elegant, he uses vast array of synthesizers, mellotron, moog, etc to create a pleasent atmosphere full of catchy moments. Sometimes he sounding like Rick Wakem around same period. Besides some vocal oriented pieces, the beautiful instrumental , one of the instrumental from the album is definetly Forever and Ever, great and catchy. This debut under his full name is by no means a masterpiece or something close, and for sure is not so inventive as Greenslade albums, but I think is more then pleasent with delicate keyboards arrangements that I think any prog fan can enjoy. I like what I've heared here from start to finish and because of that for me is 3.5 stars album, 3 stars for the music with another half star for the excellent art work.

Latest members reviews

3 stars Singing Plants and Disarming Wizards There's a picture of Dave Greenslade and Andy McCulloch playing chess on the inner sleeve of Spyglass Guest that always makes me chuckle i.e. try NOT inferring that musicians who play complex music, rarely shave and would have us believe they pursue board g ... (read more)

Report this review (#1297112) | Posted by ExittheLemming | Sunday, October 26, 2014 | Review Permanlink

4 stars I've always been really fond of this album, and to me it has an 'end of era' feel about it as it was made in 1976 with prog about to be overwhelmed by punk. The cover, with the Greenslade wizard sitting on a rock surrounded by stormy seas and a dark sky, seems to reflect this (possibly I'm readi ... (read more)

Report this review (#29360) | Posted by | Wednesday, February 9, 2005 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Although packaged as a Dave Greenslade solo effort, most of Cactus Choir sounds like Greenslade at their best. All it really lacks is the harder edge and distinctive vocals of Dave Lawson. Dave Greenslade's own vocals on 'Time takes my time' are the highlight of the album, sounding like some g ... (read more)

Report this review (#29357) | Posted by | Tuesday, August 17, 2004 | Review Permanlink

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