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Best Gentle Giant songs for a Symphonic Prog fan

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ClosetothSupperBrick View Drop Down
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    Posted: December 27 2017 at 19:29
As the title suggests, I'm looking for Gentle Giant - a band that I want to get into, as I love 70s British prog - songs. But I'm a symphonic prog fan (favorite bands include Yes, Genesis, Pink Floyd and King Crimson), so I'm wondering if there are Gentle Giant songs that would specifically appeal to me. I know that I have the capacity to like this band, because I have already got into "In a Glass House" (so if there are any other GG songs like that one I would like to know about them). So, to sum it up, which Gentle Giant songs are the most melodic, epic/farthest away from pop, have instruments other than guitar, bass, drums and keyboards and have singing that is not too strange/unconventional? (basically which songs are the most like Yes)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote CosmicVibration Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 27 2017 at 19:40
Giant's concept album -  3 Friends
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ClosetothSupperBrick Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 27 2017 at 19:45
Thank you. I have heard some songs from that album. Still needs to be listened to a little more to grasp it. But I have heard good things about it, so hopefully, it will "click" someday for me.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ClosetothSupperBrick Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 27 2017 at 19:50
Originally posted by CosmicVibration CosmicVibration wrote:

Giant's concept album -  3 Friends

What's that album's best song, in your opinion?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Magnum Vaeltaja Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 27 2017 at 20:05
Originally posted by ClosetothSupperBrick ClosetothSupperBrick wrote:

Originally posted by CosmicVibration CosmicVibration wrote:

Giant's concept album -  3 Friends

What's that album's best song, in your opinion?

The title track that finishes the album off should be right up your alley as someone who loves symphonic prog.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AFlowerKingCrimson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 27 2017 at 20:32
All imo:

Giant from the first album
Pantagruel's Nativity from Acquiring the Taste
Three Friends from Three Friends (you could combine it with Mr. Class and Quality which is right before it but the title track is the one with the mellotron).
Not much from Octopus but it's a really great album nonetheless
Free Hand from Free Hand

Not much else imo. Most of their music is really quirky and rather complex(though maybe not as complex as some people would have you think). However, their music is held together with strong instrumental interplay and great melodies(most of the time). If you like the above mentioned songs give them a shot and sample or buy their albums.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote dr wu23 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 27 2017 at 20:34
IMO the first two albums are melodic and accessible .....try Pantagruel's Nativity from Acquiring the Taste,
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Aj4KApHxDg
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dellinger Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 27 2017 at 20:42
I love their first two albums, after that they started getting... well, less melodic. The one song that helped me get into them is "Funny Ways"... the live version on "Playing the Fool" (even if it's the only song I liked in that album, otherwise I prefer the studio album in which it originally came, the debut).
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AFlowerKingCrimson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 27 2017 at 21:29
Anyway, why not look for other stuff that you might like besides Gentle Giant. I recommend the Italian band PFM and also Anglagard.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ClosetothSupperBrick Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 27 2017 at 22:50
Originally posted by AFlowerKingCrimson AFlowerKingCrimson wrote:

Anyway, why not look for other stuff that you might like besides Gentle Giant. I recommend the Italian band PFM and also Anglagard.

I have listened to PFM, in fact I found them by looking through this site's album rankings feature. So far, I like their songs "Appena Un Pò" and "Impressioni di Settembre". But I need to listen to the full albums Per Un Amico and Storia di Un Minuto because they're both in the top 50 prog albums of all time list, although I have read that L'Isola di Niente is worth listening to too. I'm looking for the most ethereal, beautiful-sounding songs with this band. What's your favorite song from both their debut and 2nd albums?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ClosetothSupperBrick Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 27 2017 at 22:52
Originally posted by dr wu23 dr wu23 wrote:

IMO the first two albums are melodic and accessible .....try Pantagruel's Nativity from Acquiring the Taste,
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Aj4KApHxDg

It's a great song, thank you for recommending it. Now it's my second fav GG song.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote iluvmarillion Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 27 2017 at 22:53
Originally posted by dr wu23 dr wu23 wrote:

IMO the first two albums are melodic and accessible .....try Pantagruel's Nativity from Acquiring the Taste,
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Aj4KApHxDg

I wouldn't say Acquiring the taste is all that accessible. The first though is as it follows the path of prog rock to that point. The next three follow a unique and complex path before they simplify a bit with In a Glass House. For a Symp Rock fan it's difficult to say what songs from Gentle Giant they might like. I'd suggest their live album, Playing the Fool might be a good starting point.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ClosetothSupperBrick Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 27 2017 at 23:06
Originally posted by iluvmarillion iluvmarillion wrote:

Originally posted by dr wu23 dr wu23 wrote:

IMO the first two albums are melodic and accessible .....try Pantagruel's Nativity from Acquiring the Taste,
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Aj4KApHxDg


I wouldn't say Acquiring the taste is all that accessible. The first though is as it follows the path of prog rock to that point. The next three follow a unique and complex path before they simplify a bit with In a Glass House. For a Symp Rock fan it's difficult to say what songs from Gentle Giant they might like. I'd suggest their live album, Playing the Fool might be a good starting point.

I was just on iTunes looking at Gentle Giant albums, and I saw Playing the Fool on there. Seems like a good collection of songs from what I know about GG! I think it is cool that the band extended some songs to longer lengths ("Funny Ways"). I'll listen to that album because I have found other live albums to be good starting points for bands that I now like, so thank you!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Frankh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 28 2017 at 00:23
From Freehand, His Last Voyage. Beautiful, gutsy and has everything that makes the band great.

Listen for Kerry Minnear tripping down the ivories during the blues break. My favorite.
Perhaps finding the happy medium is harder than we know.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote richardh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 28 2017 at 00:36
Gentle Giant are just too unique to try and fit what they do into other band styles. I'm a fan of seventies symphonic prog but I don't really hear anything in GG to compare to ELP, Yes or Genesis. I love Power and The Glory but the more expansive albums like IAGH and 3Friends don't do that much for me although they certainly have good moments.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tom Ozric Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 28 2017 at 00:54
As many have stated - Three Friends. GG have many special albums, this is one of them
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ClosetothSupperBrick Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 28 2017 at 02:08
Originally posted by Frankh Frankh wrote:

From Freehand, His Last Voyage. Beautiful, gutsy and has everything that makes the band great.

Listen for Kerry Minnear tripping down the ivories during the blues break. My favorite.

Isn't the album's title Free Hand, not Freehand? Anyways, I will listen to that song. Just by the fact that it is the longest song on the album, I can tell it will be good! I have heard good and average reviews of this album, but maybe those who were not so keen on it liked "His Last Voyage", but not enough to outweigh the many lesser songs on the album. Thanks for your suggestion!

Edited by ClosetothSupperBrick - December 28 2017 at 02:11
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ClosetothSupperBrick Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 28 2017 at 02:18
Originally posted by Tom Ozric Tom Ozric wrote:

As many have stated - Three Friends. GG have many special albums, this is one of them

I've already listened to it since posting - it is cool and artsy in a good way! Love the melancholic melodies in the title song, because the emotion and expressiveness in the vocals are so much better than the distant, (dare I say it) too proggy vocals in other GG songs.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ClosetothSupperBrick Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 28 2017 at 02:25
Originally posted by richardh richardh wrote:

Gentle Giant are just too unique to try and fit what they do into other band styles. I'm a fan of seventies symphonic prog but I don't really hear anything in GG to compare to ELP, Yes or Genesis. I love Power and The Glory but the more expansive albums like IAGH and 3Friends don't do that much for me although they certainly have good moments.

It seems that every Gentle Giant fan has a unique taste in the band, which is why it's hard to come up with the "Supper's Ready"-type masterpiece of this band. I agree that they don't fit into any other prog style. The only song of Gentle Giant's that seems like another band's song is "Think of Me With Kindness", which sounds like an early Yes song. But all I'm looking for is good music, so I'll just go with what the consensus of GG fans say is their best, and not try to pick out the most "other-band-sounding" songs.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Frankh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 28 2017 at 02:42
Yeah.

Free Hand.

I've only owned the album in one form or another for 42 years.

(Ya'd think by now I'd know what it's called.)
Perhaps finding the happy medium is harder than we know.
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