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TONY BANKS

Crossover Prog • United Kingdom


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Tony Banks biography
Anthony George Banks - Born March 27, 1950 (East Hoathly, Sussex, England)

One of the original founding members of GENESIS , Tony BANKS has been the quiet, driving force behind the band ever since their debut back in 1965. His classical leanings, strong compositional skills and distinct (and often emulated) keyboard style have set him apart from his contemporaries from the very start. Always keeping a low profile, he displays a rare compassion for his music and never tries to impress with extravagant shows of technical prowess. His contribution to the GENESIS sound and identity is fundamental. His solo material, however, is very uneven and can honestly not be called 'progressive'. This, coupled with an avowed dislike for the limelight that precludes any inclination for touring, has resulted in his solo albums systematically failing to chart - or even approaching the success of the other band members' solo material.

His first solo effort, "A Curious Feeling" (1979), is by far his best. Bearing his distinctive musical signature, it features interesting conceptual lyrics as well as the familiar crafted compositions and massive wall of keyboards that made the music of GENESIS so compelling. After this release, however, his stripped-down approach to composing brought us "The Fugitive", an early 80's pop-oriented album where he toyed with the new digital/synthetic gadgets of the day. Its catchy hooks and the fact that he handled all the lyrics himself make it interesting, but hard-core progsters find it rather disappointing.

BANKS also composed music for films ("The Wicked Lady" and "Soundtracks") and released three albums of adult-contemporary material ("Bankstatement", "Still" and "Strictly Inc") featuring a rotating cast of assorted vocalists. Finally, "Seven - A Suite for Orchestra", was released in 2004. It is made up of compositions in the pure classical symphonic tradition, performed by the London Philharmonic Orchestra with BAANKS handling some piano parts himself.

With the exception of one monumental progressive track on the album "Strictly Inc.", his recent material is decidedly MOR, with occasional references to his progressive past. Why this incredibly gifted composer has strayed ever so far from his progressive roots is a mystery - some (including myself) would say a tragedy. Still, Tony BANKS remains one of the influential figures of our times and his legacy among co...
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Banks Vaults: Complete Albums 1979-1995Banks Vaults: Complete Albums 1979-1995
Esoteric 2019
$53.18
$61.08 (used)
Curious Feeling: Two Disc Expanded EditionCurious Feeling: Two Disc Expanded Edition
Cherry Red 2016
$13.40
$11.64 (used)
FiveFive
BMG Rights Management (UK) Ltd 2018
$12.73
$16.12 (used)
Tony Banks - Chord Too FarTony Banks - Chord Too Far
Esoteric Antenna 2015
$38.46
$32.94 (used)

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TONY BANKS discography


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

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

3.43 | 213 ratings
A Curious Feeling
1979
2.41 | 114 ratings
The Fugitive
1983
3.30 | 47 ratings
The Wicked Lady (OST)
1983
2.78 | 80 ratings
Bankstatement
1989
3.04 | 99 ratings
Still
1991
3.50 | 74 ratings
Strictly Inc.
1995
2.74 | 68 ratings
Seven - A Suite For Orchestra
2004
3.93 | 83 ratings
Six - Pieces For Orchestra
2012
3.88 | 147 ratings
5
2018

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

TONY BANKS Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

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

2.85 | 56 ratings
Soundtracks
1986
4.76 | 12 ratings
A Chord Too Far
2015
4.50 | 2 ratings
Banks Vaults - The Albums 1979 - 1995
2019

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

3.20 | 6 ratings
For a While / A Curious Feeling
1979
4.40 | 5 ratings
For a While / From the Undertow
1979
3.04 | 4 ratings
And the Wheels Keep Turning
1983
3.12 | 6 ratings
This is Love
1983
3.50 | 2 ratings
The Wicked Lady
1983
3.50 | 2 ratings
Performing Songs from Lorca and the Outlaws
1985
2.96 | 4 ratings
Shortcut to Somewhere
1986
3.00 | 3 ratings
The Gift
1991
3.00 | 3 ratings
I Wanna Change the Score
1991
4.25 | 4 ratings
Still It Takes Me By Surprise
1992

TONY BANKS Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 A Curious Feeling by BANKS, TONY album cover Studio Album, 1979
3.43 | 213 ratings

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A Curious Feeling
Tony Banks Crossover Prog

Review by VianaProghead
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Review Nš 309

"A Curious Feeling" is the debut solo studio album of Tony Banks and was released in 1979. It was released after the departure of Steve Hackett from Genesis, between "Wind And Wuthering" and "...And Then There were Three...". Tony Banks was the first of the three remaining members of Genesis to release a solo work. However, "A Curious Feeling" never reached the success that Mike Rutherford and Phil Collins reached with "Smallcreep's Day" and "Face Value".

The album's cover design was made by Hothouse and the cover painting is named "Wuluwait - Boatman Of The Dead" and was painted by Ainslie Roberts who was an Australian painter, photographer, writer and a commercial artist too.

Tony Banks wrote all the tracks and he also played almost all the music instruments on it, such as, the keyboards, the guitars, the basses and the percussion. However, he selects to collaborate with him two other musicians. For the drums and percussion he chooses Chester Thompson, an American drummer and session musician who played before with Weather Report and Frank Zappa. On vocals, he chooses Kim Beacon who was a member of "String Driven Thing".

The story of "A Curious Feeling" is a science fiction novel based on the book "Flowers For Algernon" by Daniel Keyes, who was an American writer of science fiction and fantasy novels. It was written in 1958. Algernon is a laboratory mouse which was subject to a surgical intervention to increase his intelligence by artificial means. The story touches many different ethical and moral themes such as the treatment of the mentally disabled, the conflict between intellect and emotion or happiness and hoe events in the past that can influence the personality of a person later in his later life.

"A Curious Feeling" has eleven tracks. Most of the time, the music all over the album is dominated by Banks' fantastic playing, especially the Yamaha electric Grand piano, which was at the time a very popular instrument, can be heard on many of the tracks. Also the layers of string synthesizers, which were made to create an orchestral feeling on the instrumental pieces, sound very impressive. Tony's efforts on the electric and acoustic guitar are worth listening too.

The first track "From The Undertow" opens the album as an instrumental prelude. This is a nice and dramatic piano and keyboard piece. It's in the same vein of what Genesis made on "...And Then There Were Three...". "Lucky Me" is a nice track with great vocal work by Beacon. The guitar and the keyboards that work in the back are very nice too. The song is a bit contemporary in tone and has a great melody. "The Lie" is also an excellent track that could easily have fit into Genesis' portfolio of that era. It precedes the high point of the album, their magnum opus. "After The Lie" is another track that could have fit into Genesis' portfolio of that era. The dramatic tension, structure and particularly the keyboard solo are on par with some Genesis' best output. Thompson's drumming is another highlight on the track. The title track is a light footed pop rock song that lifts your spirit, as opposed to the other rather melancholic pieces of the album. It has a catchy instrumental hook and a rousing spoken introduction from Beacon. This is probably one of the strongest tracks on the album. "Forever Morning" epitomizes everything you would hope for in a real Banks' track. The music builds layer by layer reaching moments of intense grandeur with a very delicate theme at the mid point and a dramatic closing section. "You" is a romantic ballad dominated by sensitive vocals and some Genesis' inflected guitar before a fiery synthesizer solo opens up into a bombastic instrumental sequence. "Somebody Else's Dream" is the lengthiest track on the album. Thompson has been unchained to add some welcome a very dynamic drumming work and Beacon gives probably his best vocal performance on the album. "The Waters Of Lethe" remains the album's most successful offering built around a simple but lyrical piano theme before breaking out into a grandiose guitar and keyboard fanfare. It sounds amazingly beautiful like "Wind And Wuthering". "For A While" is one of the most straight forward songs. This is a melancholic short pop rock song with an engaging melody and an optimistic tone. It features a rare electric guitar break from Banks. "In The Dark" is a beautiful understated piece to conclude the album in a true Banks' style. This short track is nice and includes one final and majestic orchestral flourish. This is a very nice way to close the album.

Conclusion: "A Curious Feeling" has elements of Genesis' early progressive sound. So, it makes of this Banks' debut release the strongest and the really only album from him entirely progressive. After all I wrote about the tracks, I can say that it's for very little that I don't consider this album a true masterpiece. I think to be a masterpiece, only lacks to it a small flame of emotion. So, my rating is 4 stars because I think that it's closer to 4 stars than 5 stars. So, for what all I said before, I sincerely think that "A Curious Feeling" is really a must for all fans of Genesis and for all progressive fans. I know the album since it was released, and fortunately, despite my CD copy, I have also my old vinyl copy. I also know that this album always had also a very special place in Tony's heart, even now, after all these years have passed.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

 A Curious Feeling by BANKS, TONY album cover Studio Album, 1979
3.43 | 213 ratings

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A Curious Feeling
Tony Banks Crossover Prog

Review by Psychedelic Paul

5 stars Keyboard player extraordinaire TONY BANKS (born 1950) is of course the longstanding Master of the Keys in the band Genesis. He's appeared on all fifteen Genesis studio albums, starting with "From Genesis to Revelation" in 1969, right through to the final Genesis album, "Calling All Stations" in 1997. After all, Tony Banks IS the sound of Genesis. He's been voted one of the greatest keyboard players of all time, and deservedly so. He got together with the other three founder members, Peter Gabriel, Mike Rutherford & Anthony Phillips, to form Genesis at Charterhouse School in 1967 when they were discovered by record producer Jonathan King, and the rest is Genesis history, which there's no need to elaborate on here. This album "A Curious Feeling" (1979) is the first of six Tony Banks solo albums. The album features male vocalist Kim Beacon and American drummer Chester Thompson. Later albums were "The Fugitive" (1983), "Still" (1991), "Seven: A Suite for Orchestra" (2004), "Six Pieces for Orchestra" (2012), and his most recent album, "Five" (2018). He also recorded an album under the punningly titled bandname, "Bankstatement" in 1989, as well as composing the music for "The Wicked Lady" (1983) movie, followed by the release of a collection of soundtrack pieces in 1986, titled "Soundtracks", appropriately enough. Tony Banks' albums feature a compelling mixture of Classical music and Progressive Rock. Introduction over, it's time now to give this particular album a spin. I have "A Curious Feeling" you're going to like it.

The album opens in grand symphonic style with "From the Undertow". It's a breathtakingly beautiful opening piece of instrumental music which promises we're in for a rather special treat with this album. This serves as a prelude to "Lucky Me", an exhilarating song with a joyful vibe, as these uplifting lyrics reveal:- "And I would rather be nobody else, I'm happy as I am, all I need is in my way, And you see no one expects too much from me." ..... It's a gleeful song full of boundless optimism. Song No. 3 "The Lie" is a buoyant and flamboyant toe-tapping number that romps along nicely in rousing fashion, which leads us into "After the Lie", where Tony Banks really shines like a beacon with his stunning keyboard virtuosity. This is lush, melodic and marvellous music! Onto Song No. 5 now and the title track "A Curious Feeling", a commercial-sounding song that has "hit record" written all over it. The song has a joyous and jubilant feel to it in the same way as "Follow You, Follow Me" by Genesis. To close Side One in superlative and uninhibited style comes the 6-minute long keyboard opus, "Forever Morning". Prepare to be lifted to a higher plane of musical existence with this touching, transporting and transcendental piece of magnificent music. This is spectacular!

Returning to Earth now with "You" to open Side Two. The singer Kim Beacon is in romantic balladeer mode here with this tender-hearted melancholic number. Wait a minute though! What's this!?? Tony Banks breaks out into a wild and uninhibited Rick Wakeman-inspired keyboard jamboree to close out the song. Wow! This song is amazing! You really have to hear this to believe it!! This is a glorious symphonic masterpiece, elevating this album instantly to five-star status. What more can I say!? I'm flabbergasted by the technical brilliance on display here!! In fact, my flabber has never been so gasted!!! Okay, that's enough exclamation marks for now. Onwards to Song No. 8 and "Somebody Else's Dream", the longest song on the album at nearly 8 minutes long. It's a sonorous and resonant, keyboard-heavy anthemic song with the awesome power of a runaway steamroller, so get ready to pump up the volume and rattle those windows for this stentorian piece of stirring music. To paraphrase James Bond, you'll be shaken AND stirred after listening to this powerful and passionate piece of music. Into melodic Genesis territory now as we settle into a somewhat mellower mood for "The Gardens of Lethe". What's it all about you may well ask and where on Earth is "Lethe"!? No idea, because it's an instrumental. To call this wonderful piece of music an "instrumental" though doesn't really do it justice, because it's a sublime symphonic masterpiece, which is just what we've come to expect from Genesis keyboard maestro Tony Banks. It's time now to take a break "For a While", because that's the name of our next song. It's a lovely romantic ballad featuring these charming and invigorating lyrics:- "It sure felt good for a while, Yes, it was good for a while, I found somebody to take my hand, To the promised land of the loved." ..... It's emotional, it's inspirational, and above all, it's beautiful! Sadly, we've now reached the end of this impassioned and very impressive album with "In the Dark". It's a sad song that really tugs at the heartstrings with these emotionally-wrought lyrics:- "If you know my story now, Please don't tell, Don't want to hear, It can only bring me pain, Maybe one day before I die, I'll open that door, Maybe I'll cry, But for now I'll live in the Dark." ..... It's enough to bring a tear to your eye, as we say goodbye, but try not to cry, because this album will leave you on an emotional and spiritual high.

A gloriously uplifting album which is choc-a-bloc full of sonorous symphonies and romantic ballads. It's an absolute must-have album, regardless of whether or not you're a Genesis fan, because dare I say it..... this album is as good as, if not better than anything Genesis have ever done. It's certainly better than the 1980's Phil Collins era of Genesis, that's for sure!

 Seven - A Suite For Orchestra by BANKS, TONY album cover Studio Album, 2004
2.74 | 68 ratings

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Seven - A Suite For Orchestra
Tony Banks Crossover Prog

Review by sgtpepper

2 stars The first real forray into classical music, Tony Banks leaves a mixed but even more bored feeling after listing to the album. There are little traces of anything from rock or jazz music. The proper classification would be modern classical music with some hints of movie soundtrack as heard by brass instruments. Compositions miss keyboard instruments; you wouldn't guess that it is Tony's album by any means.

The classical music listener will be likely put down by not a sufficient complexity; and the progressive rock listener will find this album boring.

If I should pick one track to recommend, then it would be tha last long one.

 Strictly Inc. by BANKS, TONY album cover Studio Album, 1995
3.50 | 74 ratings

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Strictly Inc.
Tony Banks Crossover Prog

Review by sgtpepper

3 stars Unlike other listeners, I don't consider this album to be in Banks' best effort; that position is firmly occupied by the "A curious feeling" despite potentially worse vocals.

What has happened since 1979 until 1995? Tony sharpened his intelligent pop crafting abilities and his progressive rock signature evolved more on the Genesis albums then in his solo path, on which he rested on his laurels or and limited himself to non-distruptive keyboards in the background.

Strictly Inc incorporates many similarities with the 1991's Still: clever pop melodies and rock/synth arrangements, variety of quality vocal guests (even Fish) and an epic majestic composition: "An island in the darkness". Tbe first two tracks are quite memorable, "Walls of sound" with a Genesis feeling. "The serpent said" has a dramatic underfeel and could be suited for Peter Gabriel. Subtle synth accompaniment and longer instrumental section have their charm. "never let me know" belongs to the best melancholic numbers on that album.

"Charity balls" is based around a semi-prog motive.

The last and epic composition "The island in the darkness" is generally overrated here on Progarchives, although it is a nice return to 1979's "A curious feeling". Instrumental sections on Yamaha-CP80 are great but do not bring anything new and the same goes for the vocal parts of the composition. Keyboard runs in the middle of the song are long awaited; however i have expected more based on the rave reviews on Progarchives and considering its lenght.

Summa summarum, a pleasant pop album with hints of progressive rock and an epic composiion that will appeal to all modern Banks and Genesis fans.

 Still by BANKS, TONY album cover Studio Album, 1991
3.04 | 99 ratings

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Still
Tony Banks Crossover Prog

Review by sgtpepper

3 stars Together with Strictly Inc, these two albums represent peak in Banks' clever pop output, their commercial flop can be attributed to lack of promotion and no touring, since most of the songs have a commercial potential. Still, Still offers solid musicianship and is actually at least a 4-star pop album with some remote echoes of progressive arrangements as heard in longer songs.

The first song is perhaps the most known from the album and could be heard in European radios for a short time. Upbeat tracks are alternated by reflective and melancholic songs. Banks is at his most confident songwriting in his solo career; that could explain the album cover with himself depicted on a chair. Synth arrangements are competent and you won't find typical (prog) rock soloing; it is about providing a supporting layer.

The result is a memorable and catchy album that should have performed better in the charts considering the Genesis comeback in 1991.

However, little to be found for proggers and therefore 3 stars only.

 A Curious Feeling by BANKS, TONY album cover Studio Album, 1979
3.43 | 213 ratings

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A Curious Feeling
Tony Banks Crossover Prog

Review by sgtpepper

4 stars The first album is also the best one that TB has released in his pop/rock solo career if I don't count his orchestral albums. The album has 3 5-star tracks, all instrumental and the rest is oscillating between 3-4 stars. The instrumentals are dreamy, multilayered ingeniously crafted pieces that only Tony Banks could have created; they are fully firmly rooted in the Tony Banks realm with the sound and variety of keyboards. "From the undertow" is a very promising ouverture that was originally thought for "And then there were three" but rejected by Genesis. Suits well to "Undertow" on that album.

"Forever morning" is my most popular song by Tony, an incredible suite filled with synths, mellotron, electric piano and crafted composition with dynamism. It is the most symphonic track here with a lot of majesty and plenty of Yamaha CP- 80. "The waters of lethe" is the third major track, also instrumental, where Hackettesque guitar brings the atmosphere closer to Genesis. For all three instrumental tracks, drums are missing and that is good - the focus is on symphonic keyboards.

The sung track always have a memorable melody, passionate voice, although worse than Collin's one. Arrangements are OK, not very progressive but Banks makes sure that keyboards are represented each second and sometimes shows a nice instrumental part, for example in the upbeat "After the lie". This is also the most romantic solo album that Tony Banks recorded.

Very much recommended, and only one recommended for all classic Genesis fans.

 Seven - A Suite For Orchestra by BANKS, TONY album cover Studio Album, 2004
2.74 | 68 ratings

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Seven - A Suite For Orchestra
Tony Banks Crossover Prog

Review by FalconBleck

3 stars #28 Review

This is my last Tony Banks review and i'll move into something more, i had hard times while aproaching this album, i tried like 3 times to do a review of it but i just wasn't in the mood of doing so.

I don't promise on getting back on reviewing more Tony Banks or Genesis, but i can say that if i ever do, it'll be the released Genesis B-Sides and the exclusive pieces and package of the compilation "A Chord Too Far", i'll obviously be back as soon as Tony releases a new album tho.

1.- Spring Tide 7/10 Well, it really feels like the title says, its magical. Starts with typical Tony Banks motion and then goes into his style chords, and that's why i may have felt a little bored with this record, the orchestra gives more protagonism to the chords than the melody that was created alongside that. As for this theme, at some parts it reminds me of "An Island in the Darkness" from "Strictly Inc." but with an orchestra that overtakes the melody as i said earlier. This theme has a prominent Piano from time to time, but i'd have liked it more if the piano took more over the orchestra.

2.- Black Down 6/10 This music was created after "Calling All Stations", wich is really interesting, i feel like that album needed more Tony Banks in it, but it also shows how that album was less "solos", less melodies and more chords than anything, and this theme is exactly that, it shows that shift in Tony of doing amazing thing like "Fading Lights" and "An Island in the Darkness" in the early 90s, to doing more atmospheric chords in the late 90s, something that i think started pretty strong in songs like "Holding on my Heart". I just don't feel this theme that much, i think that it is more designed to represent an actual place than an actual idea, if i think about it a little more, i'd say like it is a forest with an entrance to Dracula's Castle or something, but its actually just a pretty scenery of a dense forest, i mean, i could hear it in Black Down and be amazed but at the same time, it goes a little too dark and it has a small flow to it. A reference to the cover art also.

3.- The Gateway 7/10 Created for a possible future movie project and it feels like it, just as with the previous theme, this one also concentrates on chords and its pretty atmopheric. This theme reminds me of some old music works, but i don't know with who to compare, i just listened something like this at the radio the other day. At half the music it gets pretty exciting, like the gateway opened and the other side can be seen. Its a really beautyful piece that takes time to peak up.

4.- The Ram 8/10 Clearly a way to wake up the audience after all the other calm stuff, it goes without saying that this is the kind of stuff that Tony does best, i like the calm stuff that he does, but when you give him that someone is being chased, or something is about to happen that requires lots of actions, this is when Tony mostly shines. Reminds me a little of Slippermen with a little of "in that quiet earth", the only problem with this piece is that it gets tranquil for a little too long, but anyways, the best theme in the album so far.

5.- Earthlight 8/10 It feels like we went back to the previous 3 themes, but i think that this time is a little more dinamic, like it could be the second theme but sped up, if that's what i'd call dinamic, it just changes chords faster, and i really like that, reminds me of some Zelda and Star Wars soundtracks. It gets the job done in a shorter time, it could be more interesting though.

6.- Neap Tide 5/10 Done in the Strictly Inc. period, this theme doesn't feel meant for an orchestra, it repeats too much certain parts and i can hear how the theme would've sounded on Strictly Inc., this theme would've been better if added to another piece in the album, or shortened, or by removing the repeating part in the background. This theme could've survived the 5 because of the pretty ending, that part moved me but by an after thought i realized that it wasn't enough.

7.- The Spirit of Gravity 7/10 It starts pretty average when at the 2 minute mark it changes to a different thing, gets more adventurous, the problem so far is that would've been better if the piano was there instead of the orchestra, then 1 minute after it goes back, another minute after and the theme goes back at the start, now its reminding me of older happy classical compotitions again, so yes, this theme changes quite a lot, but i feel like the orchestra is not doing justice for more of the parts, this theme sounds more like an experimentation on doing an orchestra with a grain of classic Tony Banks on it. Again, i don't get the name or the complete intentions of this theme, but by the scope of it, it could be showing the planets and the life occuring on it. He is clearly stepping on new territory here.

In the end, this album gets a 69/100 and that means 3 stars, really close to 4, but i ultimately decided against it because as a whole package it can't be placed as better than Six or 5.

Thanks Tony for all the music, i really enjoyed reviewing all of this and Genesis, i still listen to some songs of A Curious Feeling, The Fugitive, Bankstatement and specially the entire album 5, wich i'm happy that i gave it 5 stars, now i think that i could review it again, still give the same score and talk even better than what i did, it is really a masterpiece and the culmination of his orchestral career, but as always keep surprising us, i'm looking forward for your next work.

And later i'll review someone that has really little presence here but its a close friend of Tony that has been sharing Genesis from all of Genesis life.

 The Wicked Lady (OST) by BANKS, TONY album cover Studio Album, 1983
3.30 | 47 ratings

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The Wicked Lady (OST)
Tony Banks Crossover Prog

Review by FalconBleck

3 stars #27 Review

First off i want to address that i'm not a fan of this movie, at all, i got really bored and never bothered on finishing it, that's already bad but lets see if the ost made by Tony Banks cheers me up a little.

I'm going to do this a little different, i'll just talk about each side and condense the entire side into one paragraph, i'm a little lazy but also, i have tried to get onto doing this review many times and never felt like caring much about this.

I also have to point out that both cover arts upset me, in one, the protagonist is amazingly well drawn but the other characters and the rest don't fit in the same quality, and in the other cover art, the gun is badly placed and there's not good use of space, just a mess.

Side 1: The start is just pretty normal stuff that could be heard as something wacky, sounds like an introduction to an average old game, but in the next piece it gets much more interesting, when i think about the context of the movie i feel bad about this piece, but now i'm thinking on what the music could fit better and i see snow and christmas time. Then the next music piece called Chase goes back into being another piece like the first one, clearly not a serious chase... and for some reason the next music piece feels like the second one, the structure of this album is making me sick, but ok, this piece is pretty and it could fit in a beautyful victorian time setting where you see the shadow of a beautyful woman in the fog and rain... so far 2 greats and 2 average themes. Now the fifth piece sounds like Mega Man X music, then goes back into the title theme and becomes mystical sounding, its average at best; the next one however reminds me of Forever Morning, just a worse, cut out and uninspired version. The next music piece is also boring, feels underdeveloped and for the end its Barbara, a repeat of the title track but done much more pretty and completely developed, this one is really good.

So for the end of Side 1, the music in total its too average, but that's because some bad its in between, i finally recommend Spring, Caroline and Barbara.

Side 2: Its like a beautyful morning that suddenly turns into adventure, some parts at the middle are genius, the start is average and the ending feels like it wants to force excitement, it fits on the movie well but its not very creative on that action entrance part... just like the whole movie. The second orchestra gives a really adventurous emotion, but its filled with parts that makes me think that the composer had little experience in orchestras, curiously enough this piece also brings the title theme back in a clever way. Caroline here is basically the same but on violin/harps and i preffer the piano version, version wich captured the emotions from the start while this version takes a time to pick up. Scherzo its really cartoony, its happy and silly, just ok, meanwhile the next theme takes the title theme and becomes an amazing orchestra, very beautyful at the start and explosive half through and ends on a misterious note. The title track ochestrated is the same as the piano version but this one is much more pretty but still average. Kit is different to the piano version and i think that is much more boring than that one and finally the last one, that bring the title track back again and it tries to be exciting and doesn't sound happy either, a less than average ending for a boring silly movie.

From Side 2 i can only recommend Pastorale.

So in the end, i finally got out of this (it wasn't necessary for me to do it but i tried anyways) and this soundtrack gets a 61/100 wich is barely 3 stars. It wasn't that bad, it was just the combination of the silly movie, cover arts, lots of music pieces that could've been just one and so on, but as always, Tony has some true gems in here, the ones that i said.

 Six - Pieces For Orchestra by BANKS, TONY album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.93 | 83 ratings

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Six - Pieces For Orchestra
Tony Banks Crossover Prog

Review by FalconBleck

4 stars #26 Review

So, not so long since my last review. I come here knowing nothing about this, except that it has mostly positive reviews, but i also come from a failed attempt at reviewing Seven because i got a little bored (commentary not representative of what that actual review will be, i wasn't paying much atention).

1.- Siren 8/10 What a beautyful start! A soundtrack to a magical underwater world that flows with the rythm that the light reflected by the water and the ecosystem produce. Good choice of instruments, sounds really adventurous too, fulfills every feeling. This music demands imagination, but it also gets a little repetitive in the scales that keep coming back through the song, it is also a little too long from what it needs to be.

2.- Still Waters 6/10 This song gives me more of an autumn feel or of a place like a farm, i really don't feel much, its slow but it doesn't get much traction, sounds like an improvisation. Some parts sound really beautyful but it could have more going on. Halfway through, the music gets more exciting, but it gets back and ends a little too quickly.

3.- Blade 10/10 Parts of this music could easily belong on a Fire Emblem game. You can feel the landscapes, the adventure unfolding and the battle happening... or more so, a chronology of every space and time that a blade has occupied in history. I like the violins that pop in from time to time accompanying the exquisite main violin. It has a good amount of changes and goes back elegantly to the main motif from time to time, keeping it out from being boring.

4.- Wild Pilgrimage 10/10 I like the chord changes, this music also shows the passing of time in nature, but it goes since the conception and the passing of vegetation through the years, like what nature inherits towards the future... until a big rain unveils what a beautyful lake was hidden in that ravine.

5.- The Oracle 5/10 Really peaceful... sounds repetitive and simple also... maybe another improvisation? I don't think any of the music pieces here are, but this sounds like it.

6.- City of Gold 10/10 Am i wrong to believe in a city of gold? I read somewhere that Tony Banks was captivated about an story that inspired him in doing A Trick of the Tail, this music piece could be the ending of that idea, and the start sounds exactly like what you would feel when watching something as marvelous as a city of gold... is the person getting introduced to royalty next? Then are they telling the history of the place? Halfway through the music, night comes in, "will the place still exist once i wake up?" - wonders the protagonist. Morning comes and the city can't look more beautyful, it glows majestically... maybe too much for a pair of human eyes, the protagonist closes them, wonders how the day will continue, and the place disappears once people are approaching it, the protagonist is alone but happy, knows that the place is there and that it will appear again, so the city of gold opens up again once the people of good heart stay. As with Blade, this music piece goes back to its main motif elegantly while introducing new elements in between to accompany the story that revolves around the title.

This album was a really good ride, sometimes in some music pieces it was hard to identify what it was portraying, i think that some should've had different names. Overall this album gets an 82/100, wich is 4 Stars.

 Still by BANKS, TONY album cover Studio Album, 1991
3.04 | 99 ratings

BUY
Still
Tony Banks Crossover Prog

Review by FalconBleck

3 stars #25 Review

Update 3-4-2019 I woke up and suddenly my mind said "remember I Wanna Change the Score?" and the music started playing out of nowhere in my mind, and i was really happy, then at work searched the album on youtube and heard the first track and i was in love with it, then read this old review and realized "damn, i was mean to this album, i gotta give it justice", so i heard the whole album and pointed out what i liked and what keeps being the same.

1.- Red Day On Blue Street 7/10 The lyrics, chord changes and progression are brilliant, it fits the formula for a hit, but as any hit is repetitive and as a Tony Banks it could use a little more of his talents, the small solo doesn't satisfy me and the horns are a little annoying.

2.- Angel Face keeps its score, but i have to point out that the good atmosphere that sets at the start doesn't carry on.

4.- Still it Takes me by Surprise 8/10 Yes, i skipped The Gift because that one its the same for me, but this one as i said in the review is the best song in the album still for me, but i increased the score.

5.- Hero for an Hour 5/10 While the song its a little dumb at times, it doesn't deserve the same score as The Gift, it also has some nice vocal distortions like in The Fugitive, but this song has the better use.

6.- I Wanna Change the Score 8/10 You could say that i changed the score, this song was so stuck to my head and it surprised me even more after realizing that one part was made in 7/8, not only that, but it was cleverly implemented, probably one of the best uses of that time signature since i heard Solsbury Hill. This song its good cheese but it could add a little more Tony Banks.

9.- Back to Back 6/10 Water out of Wine, Another Murder of a Day and the last song after this one keep their respective reviews, but as of this song, i liked it a little more now and i can't understand how it wasn't a hit, also, that guitar solo its fine, a little short.

Final Score this time is 60/100, wich increases 1 star, making it a 3 star, this is the review in wich i felt the most need to do something about it, i was unfair to the album and now i kind of understand why people praise it so much, while with Abacab i'm still having trouble (i updated that one as well and the score remained the same). I enjoyed Still, and now i'm going to listen to those hit hidden gems again.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Original Review After a long hiatus i'm finally back, there have been many changes in my life, but i also had lost inspiration in reviewing for some time, that's why i'll approach this really simple to approach album... well, not really, every time that i listened to it i wasn't paying atention because of how simple it felt, but now i'll try to pay atention and actually do a review about it.

I like that many people are cooperating with Tony here, some people that we've seen in his past work and people that we will see later again. It'd be cool if he worked with them again... except with whoever designed his album art, really boring.

1.- Red Day On Blue Street 5/10 Mostly happy and harmless pop song, i have the feeling that this album will keep being like this, not good, just ok.

2.- Angel Face 5/10 This one gets more intense, like what i've been accustomed already, something that i forgot to mention about the past song that this one also has, lyrics over music or atleast music at the service of lyrics, nowadays is voice over instruments.

3.- The Gift 4/10 Reminds me of a later release... Strictly inc. Heavy on scales, reminds me of "The Serpent Said" where in the review i said "chord progressions" when i wanted to say scales . It is happy, sounds like a modern church song near the end, really basic.

4.- Still It Takes Me by Surprise 7/10 The title track, a normal ballad, more complex than everything so far. Finally a piano solo, not the best one but good. I like the chord changes and scales, i would've done the song shorter and added some more instruments... like a mellotron, everything is better with mellotron.

5.- Hero for an Hour 4/10 I haven't pointed who was singing in each song, that's the sellout of the album, i really don't care that much if the songs are still boring, but it is always something special to know when Tony is singing his own songs. This song is just ok, a little simple again, more lyrics than music again, repetitive and a little charming, but it doesn't have much going on.

6.- I Wanna Change the Score 6/10 Reminds me of "Moving Under" from "The Fugitive". This song fits right into a slice of life relaxing 90s movie, better than ok, gives a good mood and does it right even tho i don't feel like the music should be so happy because of the lyrics.

7.- Water Out Of Wine 6/10 A haunting song, its average, the chords sound special tho, it gives some certain intranquility. I have to point out Jayney Klimek because i really liked her work in Bankstatment and here she shows that she works really good with Tony Banks.

8.- Another Murder of a Day 7/10 Already a really nice atmosphere, the best song from Tony with Fish on vocals. This song is really good, but near the last 3 minutes, it feels as if Tony went tired, and the song gets happy while also giving the queue to the short guitar solo, if it wasn't for the last 3 minutes, this would be 1 point higher, it is still the best song on the album. The last piano notes are too late to save the song from losing my interest.

9.- Back to Back 5/10 Pumping that rythm out, it sounds good, it gets very repetitive but it has some moments near the end. At this point i'm a little tired of this album, i would've given it a 4.

10.- The Final Curtain 4/10 Another song that reminds me of "Strictly Inc." and i'm already tired of this album, but wait, at half of the song, it gets more hyped, but that doesn't stop the song from being repetitive and boring. I don't feel like it deserves a 3 tho, its a little better than that.

Overall this album gets a 53/100, wich is 2 stars and the lowest overall score so far, i expected less but i finished surprised. I still feel like not recommending any song unless you like the musicians involved that aren't Tony Banks, this album offers good moments instead of good entire songs.

I still don't know what's certain in the future but who does, i'll probably review Six next.

Thanks to ProgLucky for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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