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Galactic Cowboys - Space in Your Face CD (album) cover

SPACE IN YOUR FACE

Galactic Cowboys

 

Progressive Metal

3.27 | 11 ratings

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TCat
3 stars Galactic Cowboys is considered one of the forerunners of Progressive Metal. They came along when heavy metal was faltering a bit, but love them or hate them, they did give it the kick that the genre needed to propel it into the next century.

Their 2nd album, "Space in Your Face" continues with the fun-time heavy metal sound that was prevalent on their first album, but it does seem a little rushed at times. However, you can hear the use of progressive styles that made their music a step above the typical hair metal style that had seen it's last days, and heavy metal was trying to decide at the time which way it should go. Who knew that the crazy antics of GC would hold part of the answer?

The other thing that is evident in their music is the use of harmonies, which in this album, are not quite as overused as on the debut album, but they are still there. But there is also a slight decline in the music here, as it doesn't seem that there is quite as much thought put into the music. There are some excellent prog metal gems like "Blind" which really uses the harmonic vocals quite well, and this ends up being the best and strongest track on the album, even though it is more along the lines of a heavy ballad.

Other stand outs are the surprisingly heavy "If I Were a Killer" and the Faith No More sound of "I Do What I Do" where the vocals even sound like Mike Patton. Even though "No Problems" is mostly pretty typical, the killer harmonica and guitar solo during the middle instrumental break is worth the price of the overall track. The record label wanted to keep the album down to 9 tracks, but the band didn't want to cut any of the tracks, so there are actually 2 hidden tracks; "Ranch on Mars" and "Still Life of Peace", and the album ends up being well over an hour long.

The biggest drawback on this album is pretty much the same as the debut album, by the time you get to the end of it all, the surprises and the novelty of the band and the harmonics gets worn out. But, I believe it is a bit better overall than the first album. Now, more than 25 years later, the music comes across a little cheesy at times, but it also, at times, seems like it is current. I have found, however, that I don't find it as appealing as I did back in the 90s. It just hasn't retained it's charm and head banging glory that it did back then. It's still fun to listen to every once in a while, but not very often, as it's age shows at times. Many people compare GC to Kings X, but I find at least that Kings X is even less appealing to me, where GC has a lot more variety in their sound.

Anyway, if you see this in the discount bin somewhere, and you love fun and heavy metal, and if you also want to hear the band that gets the credit for starting progressive metal, then by all means, pick it up. Just remember that it hasn't aged really well, but there are some high points on here that make it all worth while.

TCat | 3/5 |

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