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GALAHAD

Neo-Prog • United Kingdom


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Galahad picture
Galahad biography
Founded in Christchurch, Dorset, UK in 1985

GALAHAD formed just for fun playing roughly half covers (GENESIS, ZEPPELIN, RUSH, SABBATH, FOCUS etc) and half original material. Galahad then supported a few fairly well known 'Progressive' bands that were coming up at the time including IQ, PENDRAGON, HAZE and later PALLAS and MAGNUM.
Then, after mixing it with the slightly 'bigger boys' GALAHAD decided take it more seriously, and began playing only original material resulting in the release of their first proper album in 1991, 'Nothing Is Written', which was purely self -financed and released independently but which went on to sell several thousand copies.

The success of 'Nothing Is Written' was also helped by the fact that the band received substantial air play on BBC Radio One, especially on the Radio One Rock Show hosted by the late, great Tommy Vance. The band then landed themselves with deals in the UK, Japan and Germany.

The band has now released fifteen albums including albums by main band offshoots such as GALAHAD ELECTRIC COMPANY and the GALAHAD ACOUSTIC QUINTET. The band has played hundreds of gigs in the UK, Europe and America over the last few years, at times in some very unusual venues!

In 2002 Galahad released 'Year Zero' which featured John WETTON (ASIS, KING CRIMSON, FAMILY etc.) on guest vocals.

In September 2006 Galahad released their debut DVD 'Resonance' , which was recorded live in Katowice, Poland in May 2006.

'Empires Never Last' , which features Karl GROOM (THRESHOLD)) on engineering duties, was released in 2007 and took the band in a heavier, more muscular, guitar orientated direction. This more contemporary, metallic approach seems to have worked as 'Empires' was a great success, both commercially and critically, and resulted in them winning album of the year at the 2007 Classic Rock Society awards. 'Empires' was also included in many top 10 album listings for 2007.

In the interim and whilst recording TWO new studio albums GALAHAD released a couple of live albums 'Sleepless in Phoenixville - Rosfest Live 2007' and 'Whitchurch 92/93 - Live Archives -Vol.2' (CD/DVD) plus a re-issue of their 1992 Year Zero album, which also contained bonus CD consisting of live versions of tracks from Year Zero.

'Battle Scars', again recorded at Thin Ice by Karl GROOM was released in April 2012 and took the band further in to a heavy/rockier direction but mixing it up with a few mor...
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Seas of ChangeSeas of Change
Avalon 2018
$15.79
$13.99 (used)
When Words Collide 30ThWhen Words Collide 30Th
JFK 2015
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Beyond the Realms of EuphoriaBeyond the Realms of Euphoria
CD Baby 2016
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Sleepers: 20Th Anniversary (Re-Mastered Edition)Sleepers: 20Th Anniversary (Re-Mastered Edition)
Remastered
CD Baby 2015
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Battle ScarsBattle Scars
CD Baby 2016
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Empires Never LastEmpires Never Last
Avalon Records 2011
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Resonance  Live In PolandResonance Live In Poland
Metal Mind 2009
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$13.90 (used)
Resonance: Live in PolandResonance: Live in Poland
Multiple Formats
Mvd Visual 2006
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GALAHAD discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

GALAHAD top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.45 | 79 ratings
Nothing Is Written
1991
2.90 | 68 ratings
In A Moment Of Complete Madness
1993
3.35 | 46 ratings
Galahad Acoustic Quintet: Not All There
1994
3.48 | 111 ratings
Sleepers
1995
3.00 | 84 ratings
Following Ghosts
1999
2.13 | 24 ratings
Galahad Electric Company: De-Constructing Ghosts
1999
3.56 | 121 ratings
Year Zero
2002
4.10 | 408 ratings
Empires Never Last
2007
3.80 | 278 ratings
Battle Scars
2012
3.84 | 297 ratings
Beyond The Realms Of Euphoria
2012
3.82 | 125 ratings
Quiet Storms
2017
4.05 | 254 ratings
Seas Of Change
2018

GALAHAD Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.78 | 8 ratings
The Christmas Lecture
1993
3.19 | 17 ratings
Classic Rock - Live
1996
3.86 | 2 ratings
Two Classic Rock Lives
2008
3.90 | 20 ratings
Sleepless In Phoenixville - RoSfest Live 2007
2009
3.83 | 12 ratings
Whitchurch 92/93 - Live Archives vol. 2
2012
4.06 | 15 ratings
Solidarity - Live in Konin
2015

GALAHAD Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

3.82 | 38 ratings
Live in Poland - Resonance (DVD)
2006

GALAHAD Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.08 | 13 ratings
Galahad - Other Crimes and Misdemeanours vol. 1
1992
3.03 | 20 ratings
Other Crimes And Misdemeanours II
1997
3.13 | 8 ratings
Decade
1997
2.61 | 18 ratings
Other Crimes And Misdemeanors III
2001
4.88 | 7 ratings
When Worlds Collide
2015

GALAHAD Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

3.67 | 9 ratings
In A Moment Of Madness (Tape)
1989
3.40 | 5 ratings
Voiceprint Radio Sessions
1994
4.14 | 11 ratings
Seize the Day
2014
4.04 | 5 ratings
Guardian Angel
2014
4.00 | 4 ratings
Mein Herz Brennt
2014
4.71 | 5 ratings
30
2015
4.00 | 5 ratings
Empires Never Last (Orchestral Version)
2016

GALAHAD Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Year Zero by GALAHAD album cover Studio Album, 2002
3.56 | 121 ratings

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Year Zero
Galahad Neo-Prog

Review by VianaProghead
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Review N║ 246

Galahad was formed in 1985, just for fun. In those times, they played half covers songs of Genesis, Led Zeppelin, Rush, Black Sabbath, Marillion, Focus, etc., and half of original material. Galahad then supported a few fairly very well known progressive rock bands, that were coming up at the time, including IQ, Marillion, Pendragon, Pallas, Haze and Magnum.

But, in the 90's, fortunately, Galahad decided to take it more seriously, playing only original material from them. The result of that decision came out in the release of their first proper album in 1991, called 'Nothing Is Written', which was purely sel-financed and released independently by the band. The final result was the sold of several thousand copies.

The success of 'Nothing Is Written' also was helped by the fact that the band received substantial air play on the BBC Radio One, especially on the Radio One Rock Show. The band then landed themselves with deals in the UK, Japan and Germany. Thanks to that, they became much more known and put them into much higher flights in the following years.

So, after more than thirty years, the band released more than thirty works, including twelve studio albums, six live albums, a DVD and twelve compilations, according to Progarchives. By the other hand, Galahad played hundreds of live gigs in the UK, Europe and America over the last years, and at times, even in some very unusual and original venues.

So, it was in this context that appeared 'Year Zero' which was released in 2002. Since their foundation until that date, they had only released six studio albums. So, we have only six albums in seventeen years. But 'Year Zero' became a mark of change in their long, but at the same time, short career. Their next studio album 'Empires Never Last' took the band in a heavier, more muscular, guitar oriented direction. This more contemporary musical approach seems to have worked making of this work the band's most successful album to date, both commercially and critically, and resulted in the album win the title of 'Album of the Year' at the Classic Rock Society awards, in 2007. In 2012 the band returned with two new studio albums 'Battle Scars' and 'Beyond The Realms Of Euphoria' that became two new great albums. They confirmed the position as a great prog act with the last two studio albums, 'Quiet Storms' and 'Seas Of Change'.

So, 'Year Zero' is the seventh studio album of Galahad and was released in 2002. This is a conceptual album with about one hour of music. The album is performed as only one piece of continuous music and is the most instrumental oriented album that Galahad has recorded in their entire career. It's divided into fifteen parts, including songs and instrumentals. Some pieces are integrated, like instrumental segments, and others are just mixed together. This and the fact that some themes are returning, give to the album a strong conceptual feel and turning it in a truly prog rock album.

As you would expect with a Galahad's release, especially the last ones, 'Year Zero' contains a myriad of musical styles including classical, baroque, jazz interludes, a heavy psychedelic musical section incorporating techno beats and industrial grooves as well as the usual traditional sound of the progressive music and heavy rock, punctuated by some quieter and more sensitive musical passages before the album reaches a grand and rousing choral crescendo to finish, supported by the Cantori Catholic Choir. Vocal harmonies are one of the features that Galahad uses to great effects.

So, 'Year Zero' is their first conceptual album, with one piece of continuous music broken down into fifteen digestible chunks, to make it easier for CD's, and they had clearly spread their musical wings. In fact, it takes until nearly halfway through the second track for the album to become recognisable as Galahad, as they are utilising the talents of Dean Baker on keyboards to take the music in a new direction. He certainly brought great many new sounds and effects to the band, some sounding much more like Hawkwind or Ozric Tentacles than like Genesis. But, when Roy starts singing, soon becomes clear this is the old band with a lot of new ideas, which even allowed for John Wetton to sing a few lead lines, which certainly confuses the ear as he is quite different to Stuart Nicholson, but was trying to sing in Stu's style.

Conclusion: 'Year Zero' isn't an album that can easily be digested on the first listenings, but requires many hearings to ful appreciate all that is encompassed. I'm deeply impressed by this album. The group has been called a promising band for a long time, but this new release is a very strong musical statement and proves that the band is very much alive. Their earlier Marillion influences are almost completely gone. The music on the album is a powerful combination of the traditional and more recent rock styles and its sound is quite modern with the music concentrated on moods and melodies, without overly too long instrumental parts. The audio quality of the album is also very good. Concluding, with 'Year Zero' Galahad made an amazing album and finally they have made a huge step into the future of their music. I'm sure this album will already feature in the musical collection of many fans of the band, but for those unsure, or perhaps unfamiliar with the music of Galahad, this would make a worthy introduction. 'Year Zero' continues growing on me.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

 Seas Of Change by GALAHAD album cover Studio Album, 2018
4.05 | 254 ratings

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Seas Of Change
Galahad Neo-Prog

Review by lazland
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Given that I was previously a collaborator on the neo-prog team on Prog Archives, it will probably come as a wee bit of a surprise to those who have read my reviews and contributions here that I was never much of a Galahad fan. They were, to me, an okayish sort of act, one of many who came out of those heady days in the 1980's second wave of prog which spawned favourites such as Marillion, IQ, Pendragon & etc.

I thought that the first two albums were rather weak, derivative, and not worthy of further attention, and I lost track of them. That is until 2007, when I gave Empires Never Last a couple of spins, and did not really enjoy what I heard. I basically thought; give up; you don't like them; you can't like everyone.

That is until I read a couple of reviews from alumni of this site for the latest opus, the fact that Lee Abraham, one of my favourite solo artists of recent years, had returned to the fold, and the knowledge that, as a rather sad political obsessive, the LP passed a commentary on the state of modern British politics, which, whether you voted leave or remain, can only be described as being in a shocking mess. Indeed, I have never known anything like it in a 35 year public service career.

So, on all of these levels, this album seemed made for me, and it does not disappoint.

One 42 minute epic, made up of twelve mini pieces merged into one monster of a track. It is rollocking. It races along, and never once loses the attention of the listener. It is a superb collective piece, and includes some rather delicate and lovely pieces by a guest musician I had not heard of previously, one Sarah Bolter on wind instruments.

It would be impossible, and really not give the piece any real justice, to dissect the component parts in a review. Suffice to say that the lyrics perfectly encapsulate the mess we are in, without being overly preachy. The musicianship is never anything less than tight, and mention should go to the marvellous orchestration implemented by Dean Baker, whose at times malevolent keys are to the fore in much of what you hear.

It is nice to be proven wrong, especially where artists and music are concerned. This whole album, which has reworked parts of the suite as two bonus tracks, is a joy to listen to, and will absolutely make me buy and sit down and listen to what I have been missing all of these years.

An excellent album, and a clear highlight of 2018.

 Seas Of Change by GALAHAD album cover Studio Album, 2018
4.05 | 254 ratings

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Seas Of Change
Galahad Neo-Prog

Review by Rissan

5 stars Galahad excels with Seas Of Change. Just as Comedy Of Errors presented their album spirit several years ago as a single track, Galahad does this again with a sublime suite of more than 42 minutes, full of the musical ingenuity that the band from Dorset has been offering us for over thirty years. .

The central theme of Seas Of Change can be captured in one word: BREXIT. Strongly politically engaged texts are the result when Stu Nicholson sings about the political climate in England. He looks with mixed feelings at the disappearance of his country hostage by social upheaval, mass confusion, an uncertain future and protests. But above all he paints a picture of the brutality that comes from the responsible politicians and all the resulting anger and frustrations.

A heavy subject, although Galahad knows how to make it musically brilliant and yet also airy, in which the entire spectrum of their repertoire is touched. Opening in an ambient style with references to Tangerine Dream and Latimer- like guitar playing, Nicholson is involved in this suite from The Great Unknown, the third movement. From the very beginning, Lee Abraham, already bass player in the band from 2005 to 2009, shines with strong and diverse guitar playing, that to be honest, Roy Keyworth, certainly a gifted guitarist, is in the crown.

Seas Of Change is a suite that, with each turn, grows into a compelling epic. The group chooses its moments for surprising breaks, choral parts and wonderfully lingering guitar playing, in which the dance influences of predecessors Battlescars and Beyond The Realms Of Euphoria, which date back to 2012, dominate less but perform a serving function.

Seas Of Change also marks the return of bassist Tim Ashton, who left for Japan after the publication of Nothing Is Written in 1990 and only returned in 2015 and that year debuted on Northern Prog; incidentally the last concert with Roy Keyworth on guitar. With the bringing in of Lee Abraham as a guitarist, the band seems to have tapped into a new dimension, with a better balance between the guitar and Dean Baker's keyboard work. Ashton and drummer Spencer Luckman provide the tight foundation, while Nicholson comes out of his career with his most politically engaged lyrics. It makes Seas Of Change a highlight in Galahad's oeuvre.

 Empires Never Last by GALAHAD album cover Studio Album, 2007
4.10 | 408 ratings

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Empires Never Last
Galahad Neo-Prog

Review by VianaProghead
Prog Reviewer

5 stars Review N║ 189

'Empires Never Last' is the eighth studio album of Galahad and was released in 2007. Through this album, Galahad invited the contribution of Karl Groom, the guitarist of Threshold, on some additional guitar work. Karl is also credited with co-production, engineering and the overall sound of the album. No wonder that the album has some flavour of progressive metal, especially in the use of guitar riffs. So, the final sound of the album is much heavier than the sound of all their previous studio albums. In reality, their last studio albums have taken them towards a much heavier sound, creating a unique and modern sound whilst retaining very occasional nods to their more 'progressive' past.

Karl Groom is a British guitarist and record producer. He his best known as the founding member of the progressive rock metal band Threshold, but he also played guitar on other bands like Mercy Train, Shadowland and Strangers On A Train. As a producer, he is mostly known for metal styles production of various bands like his own band Threshold and Dragon Force. But he has also worked on other progressive rock acts including Yes, Pendragon and John Wetton.

'Empires Never Last' has seven tracks. The first track 'De-Fi-Ance' is divided into two parts: 'Part 1' and 'Part 2'. It begins with a beautiful female choral vocals formed by Tina Groom, Sarah Quitter and Tina Booth, before Stuart Nicholson growls the name of the track in the style of the death metal music. This is a magnificent, astonishing and surprising musical overture that sets perfectly the overall tone of the album, showing that the Galahad's sound appears to have changed. The second track 'Termination' confirms the first impression and expectation that we are in presence of a Galahad's album completely different from their previous studio albums. This is a magnificent, astonishing and surprising track which comprises heavy guitar and bass riffs perfectly sustained by excellent keyboards, drums and vocal works. It's a very bombastic track that puts the album on a very high musical quality level. The third track 'I Could Be God' is the lengthiest track on the album that keeps the album in a very high quality level. It's a very energetic track, in the same mood of the previous tracks. This is a fantastic piece of progressive music with a very melancholic musical ambience and where Martin Luther King's famous and touching speech fits very well, bringing to my memory also the famous and touching speech made by Winston Churchill that appears on 'Fool's Overture' of Supertramp. Curiously, some vocal parts of the album, in the middle of the track just before Martin Luther King's speech, reminds me Rush, from the times of 'Hemispheres'. The fourth track 'Sidewinder' is also another great song and confirms that we are in presence of a great progressive album, which is probably a truly masterpiece. It's a track that opens with a very cool and pacific musical atmosphere and where we can hear some portions of George Bush's speeches. It's a song with an excellent musical atmosphere and where we can highlight a great guitar work, a beautiful keyboard performance and a very catchy choral job. Karl Groom appears on the song with a solo. The fifth track 'Memories From An African Twin' is another surprising track, but this time, because we are in presence of a different kind of song. It's a more classic song, nothing heavy and with a jazzier style in the end. It's a song based on acoustic guitar, harpsichord and pipe organ and is the only song on the album without lyrics, despite have some choral work. It's the weaker track on the album but doesn't spoil the overall quality of the album. The sixth track is the title track 'Empires Never Last'. It represents the return of the album to its overall mood. This is one of the most powerful tracks of the album and represents another highlight. It's a track with an excellent musical balance between the heavy and mellow parts of the song. The seventh and last track 'This Life Could Be My Last Life' is a very emotional song that makes us think about the significance of our life and that like the empires we also doesn't last forever. It's a pleasant, beautiful and melodic track, a fine rock ballad with hard rocking guitar riffs, in the same mood of the rest of the album. It's the perfect ending for a great album.

Conclusion: 'Empires Never Last' is, in my humble opinion, a masterpiece and one of the best neo-prog albums ever made. There are bands that can grow with the passage of time, becoming more mature and innovative. This is the case of Galahad. They seem to me very similar with to Port wine, the older the better. 'Empires Never Last' is a very strong album, perfectly balanced and superiorly produced and that doesn't have any disappointing or any truly weak point. It's a departure from their previous works with a little more emphasis on keyboards and guitars. It has a more modern sound which is sometimes more close to metal. I dare to say that Galahad, with this album, made one of the greatest contributions to the category of 'British Neo-Prog' and is setting definitively a place alongside such established names in the neo-prog rock sub-genre, such as Marillion, IQ, Pendragon, Pallas and Arena. If Galahad continues to innovate with this high musical quality level, I sincerely hope that they don't crumble and fall, and that they can will last forever.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

 Nothing Is Written by GALAHAD album cover Studio Album, 1991
2.45 | 79 ratings

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Nothing Is Written
Galahad Neo-Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

2 stars GALAHAD has become one of the better known bands to fall into the broadening neo-prog section of the progressive rock universe in the 21st century but the band actually started all the way back in 1985 as a seven-piece band inspired by the usually prog revival suspects such as Twelfth Night, IQ, Pendragon and of course Fish era Marillion. The band actually started out as a cover band playing everything from symphonic rich prog like Genesis to more crossover prog and classic rock such as Led Zeppelin and Rush. Lead singer Stuart Nicholson readily admits that the whole project was only put together for fun and that nobody in the beginning was the least bit concerned with any sort of professional career to emerge out of it. In a similar storyline of Steven Wilson and his Porcupine Tree project, GALAHAD gradually garnered enough attention by their contemporaries and ended up playing live with some of the neo-prog heroes they were emulating.

All of this turning of the tides forced the band to take their project more seriously as they found themselves in an unforeseen trajectory. Around 1990 the band started to realize that they might have a real musical career in their future and began to craft what would become their first album NOTHING IS WRITTEN which emerged as was an independent release. This debut was pretty much a DIY enterprise as it was self-financed, self-produced and self-promoted and despite the poor quality in both production and performance managed to sell several thousand albums which was enough impetus to launch the band's career into the next level. While the band's lineup has changed substantially throughout the decades. Three members: vocalist Stuart Nicholson, guitarist Roy Keyworth and drummer Spender Luckman have been with the band since the beginning album.

Anyone who is familiar with the later works such as the excellent "Empires Never Last" or their other modern day albums that incorporate a heavy guitar heft to the mix will be quite underwhelmed by what lackluster performances are displayed on NOTHING IS WRITTEN. Although i rarely agree with harsh vitriol dished out by the critics, this one is often cited as uninspired and down right bland with too many derivative aspects lifted from the 80s neo-prog movement without adding anything original. In the case of NOTHING IS WRITTEN, i would have to completely agree with every single word. This is indeed one of the most carbon copy and paste examples of a neo-prog i've ever heard all dished out in the most generic fashion possible.

Think of this one sitting more in the territory of the IQ album "Are You Sitting Comfortably?" Like that turkey of an album, NOTHING IS WRITTEN's material lies somewhere between bland 80s AOR and the weakest aspects of neo-prog all the while offering boring cliche melodic and instrumental performances. Likewise Nicholson sounds more like a tired has been who has ruined his voice through too much touring throughout the years. Clearly the focus of the band had changed but the talent was still on amateur mode at this point and when hearing this debut release at the time, it would have been impossible to predict that GAHALAD would actually get their act together and become one of the major players in the neo-prog world. While i'm usually pretty lenient on early albums because they often provide some sort of interesting origins, this one is truly a mess in every way and should be completely avoided by all but completionists.

 Seas Of Change by GALAHAD album cover Studio Album, 2018
4.05 | 254 ratings

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Seas Of Change
Galahad Neo-Prog

Review by tempest_77

5 stars Seas of Change is, without a doubt in my mind, Galahad's crowning achievement; a single, 43-minute, politically charged musical work unlike any other in this day and age. I've often found that one of the things Galahad struggles with the most is their lyrics. On albums such as Battle Scars, they were plagued by uninspired lyrical content that ruined otherwise wonderful songs. Such is not the case on Seas of Change, because they have actually chosen something real to write about. By focusing on the turbulence created in Europe by Brexit, they have not only managed to avoid their usual lyrical pitfalls, but they've also managed to intertwine the music with the lyrics in such a way that truly evokes the uneasy emotions of many Europeans today. It is an absolute masterpiece, and I wouldn't be surprised if it goes on to be considered one of the greatest progressive rock albums of this decade.
 Seas Of Change by GALAHAD album cover Studio Album, 2018
4.05 | 254 ratings

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Seas Of Change
Galahad Neo-Prog

Review by Progrussia

4 stars 30 years into their career, Galahad go all in with creating a 42-minute megaepic lamenting the current state of British politics. Other than the length it probably doesn't hold much surprises, taking about 10 minutes to really lift off and then shuffling through familiar neo-prog staples of Pink Floydian up-in-the-sky atmospherics , the bounciness of Genesis, folksy melodies and an occasional drift into a heavier mode (though not as metallic as some of their recent releases). But as far as 40-minute songs go nowadays, it is an impressive and ear-pleasing feat. As a bonus, the release offers two of the most catchy cuts from the said epic, spiced up with more Gilmore-esque guitar heroics.
 Seas Of Change by GALAHAD album cover Studio Album, 2018
4.05 | 254 ratings

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Seas Of Change
Galahad Neo-Prog

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

5 stars So, last year I went back to the UK for the first time in five years, and arranged to stay with Stu and his wonderful wife Lin for a night. It was something of a shock to discover that he had been admitted into hospital, which of course warranted a trip over to Poole, so instead of sitting in his living room imbibing on the odd Hobgoblin or three we instead made do with a coffee at his bedside (and I drank his Hobgoblin later that night). It was while we were visiting that he told me that Roy had left the band again, this time presumably for good. I can remember back when he told me that Roy had left previously, but after some time he had been coaxed back into the band he founded, but this was more permanent and they had already found a replacement. Knowing that Karl Groom (Threshold) had assisted on the last release, for a minute I wondered if it might be him but couldn't work out how he could commit the time, but I think I was even more surprised when Stu told me that it was multi-instrumentalist and solo artist Lee Abraham. But, it did make sense as Lee had already been a full member of the band, as bassist, but what would this mean to the overall sound? Also, this was going to be the first electric release featuring Tim Ashton on bass, whose last "proper" album was 'Nothing is Written' before he left the band to travel to Japan.

Stu sent me some edits to whet my appetite (which are "bonus" songs on the CD), telling me that the new album was going to be a single song clocking in at more than 40 minutes. Over the years Galahad have moved from neo-prog to prog metal, have dallied with both acoustic and dance, even brought some trance into what they have been doing, so what was the new album going to sound like, bearing in mind that three of the five last recorded together in 1991?

Just one guest has been brought in, Sarah Quilter, who has played with the band on and off since the Galahad Acoustic Quintet album, again adding flute, clarinet and soprano sax. Her touches are delicate and richly enjoyed, but this is really about the five guys this time around, who sat down and ripped up the Galahad playbook and have produced something that no-one really expected, namely a back to the roots neo-prog album which is a concept, a view on the political shenanigans surrounding Brexit, and musically one of the most diverse they have ever released. This latter is in no small part to Lee, who is approaching the guitar parts with a fresh mind, playing acoustic or electric as the need arises, soloing when he needs to but often letting everyone else take centre stage and staying more in the background than some of their more metallic releases. Dean is enjoying himself by using a larger variety of sounds than previously, Tim sounds like he has never been away, while the use of Karl as a producer has yet again captured just how important Spencer is to the overall sound of the band, and just how much variety he offers in terms of technique. Then there is Stuart, who still hits the notes with ease, and sounds as if he is having an absolute blast.

How does this fit within their canon? Well, in many ways it is the logical album to follow 'Sleepers': it certainly doesn't sound as if the band have been releasing music for the last 20 years, as if they had been able to produce the former without all the issues they suffered at the time, then this would have been a logical follow-up. Here we have a line-up of some guys who were there in the (relatively) early days, one who has been there before and has returned, and Dean who is by far the longest-serving keyboard player and who has seen the band through many musical changes. He provided the music and arrangements, Stu provided the lyrics and vocals, and all five of them have provided the most complete and wonderful album of their career to date.

That it is a masterpiece is not in doubt, that it will be viewed as album of the year by many is also a shoe-in, while the understanding that in many ways this is the most important release of their career should be taken as read. Let's hope that they capitalise on the success this is already garnering, and gain the plaudits this so richly deserves.

 Seas Of Change by GALAHAD album cover Studio Album, 2018
4.05 | 254 ratings

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Seas Of Change
Galahad Neo-Prog

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

5 stars One long 42+ minute song--and what a song! This is a Neo Prog masterpiece in the IQ/Pendragon vein! But this is better. Way better, this is the best Neo Prog album I've heard since EDISON'S CHILDREN's The Final Breath Before November.

"Seas of Change" (42:43) The piece opens with ambient synth layers and treated flute setting up a spacey, latent energy atmosphere over which a "radio" voice speaks a few lines at a time. At 1:35 solo grand piano breaks the introductory spell, setting a kind of classical/symphonic scene, over which a cathedral-filling solo female voice sings some wordless vocalise. Beautiful, like the Alexandre Desplat pieces used in the last Harry Potter films. (10/10) At the three minute mark we shift into a kind of theatric, mediŠval section with pompous male vocal announcing the upcoming play from the "future." This is followed by harpsichord and harp and, then, piano sounds with Gregorian voice--all keyboard generated. Radio voice "play-by-play" seems to be covering the rising tension and decay of national government. At 6:23 Galahad lead singer Stu Nicholson enters for the first time to start singing his bard-like version of the eery tidings happening. "Bring it on," he says before wailing solo guitar seems to keen our plight. At 8:15 comes the first breakout of true rock fullness--a nice section with some excellent deep bass notes and matching organ and guitar chord progressions in an odd time signature. Great instrumental section! (10/10) At the ten minute mark there is another shift--into a slow, panning percussive synth bouncing around the background while winds and synths take turns filling the soundscape with incidentals and arpeggios. Drums introduce another section at 11:30 as "La-la-la-las" set up the next vocal section of the story. Great support for Stu's vocal. The part of this section is simple as the section follows the ABACAB structure of a pop song. (9/10) At 15:05 there is another break in which a radio play-by-play catches us up to speed. The music then amps back up into the full force of the previous section before suddenly breaking into a new section with acoustic guitar strumming providing the foundational fabric for Stu's next section--the "Smoke" section. Sounds quite a bit like a Peter Jones vocal on Colin Tench's albums: theatric. Nice drums as the music thickens with volume and intensity behind Nicholson's vocal. (8/10) At 18:10 we switch back to a familiar heavier riff, with low end dominating over the organ and excellent cymbal play. Another slight shift at 18:57 into an angrier section about consensus (or the lack thereof). (9/10) At 20:05 we again break for a staticky radio update. Great sequenced synth background support for Stu's higher octave vocal. Staccato choral vocals sing the next section over a hard-driving, heavier section. Another radio update is followed by an excellent synth solo over the heavy, choral section. (9.5/10) At the 24 minute mark there is a break for a long synth and organ interlude before the next radio update occurs. Nice. (5/5) Then, at 25:20, begins the intro to the "Dust" section with its strumming acoustic guitar and return of the soprano female vocalise. By 25:45 we are into the full sound of the song with its catchy throbbing beat and swirling soloing synth. Stu's vocal here is kind of laid back as he sings about the vengeance the planet is serving to the smug liars running our race into climate catastrophe. The section that begins at the 28 minute mark, the second part of "Dust," is the album's only truly weak link (both lyrically and in its IQ familiarity), though the lead guitar work is wonderful. (8/10) At 34:40 another "radio" interlude pre-empts another shift in the song thread, this one singing about "danger," "trust," and "faces." (8.5/10) At 39:18 a cymbal crashes denotes the shift into the final slowed-down, piano-based section. Ambience and atmosphere seem burgeoning with potential energy--as if ready to burst forth in another foray into hard-drive. But then Stu enters and calms and quells any thoughts of rebellion with his smooth voice and words. The true finisher is the female singer performing the vocalise to the end. (9.5/10)

A five stars; a masterpiece of Neo Prog music!

 Seas Of Change by GALAHAD album cover Studio Album, 2018
4.05 | 254 ratings

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Seas Of Change
Galahad Neo-Prog

Review by The Jester

5 stars Review # 79. After the two - rather powerful - albums Galahad released back in 2012, the release of Quiet Storms was kind of a surprise to me. A very nice album without a doubt, but "different". And when I learned about the release of Seas of Change, I had no idea what to expect.

Seas of Change was another surprise to me, in the sense that it includes only one song! The 42-minute long suite Seas of Change. In my opinion, it needs something more than "guts" to release an album with only one song in it, especially if your name is not Mike Oldfield!

The truth is that the CD and the digital version, are including 2 more songs as bonus tracks. But not the vinyl version. The production is excellent once more, and responsible for that in no other than Karl Groom and the Thin Ice Studios. Karl Groom, further than the leader of Threshold, is also an excellent producer, as it is proved by the productions he did on Galahad's latest albums; starting from Empires Never Last. Another very important fact is that Stu Nicholson is once more in great form, and his vocals are adding a lot to the album's dynamic.

As far as I understood, the album's main theme is the uncertainty that is spread above UK, because of the upcoming Brexit. This also proves that the band is not afraid to deal with some serious problems that our modern world is facing. Because Brexit is not only an English thing; it's a European thing, if not universal.

As you can understand, because the album includes only one song, it is impossible (and needless) to try and write something about each its 12 parts, because it must be heard as a whole piece of work. And there is the album's strongest point for me. The only thing you will have to do is to insert the CD into your player, press 'play' and let yourselves sunk into the beauty of Galahad's music. This is an excellent piece of work in my opinion, and it is highly recommended to the fans of Progressive Rock and/or Neo-Prog. Hat's off to Galahad, not only for trying to present something so ambitious and creative but also for succeeding in it! My Rating would be 4.5 stars

Thanks to kev rowland for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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