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Steve Hackett - To Watch The Storms CD (album) cover

TO WATCH THE STORMS

Steve Hackett

 

Eclectic Prog

3.77 | 376 ratings

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Ivan_Melgar_M
Special Collaborator
Symphonic Prog Specialist
5 stars If you ask the people who of the ex Genesis members has the most solid career, the POP fans will say Phil Collins, the prog' fans will mostly say Peter Gabriel, but I won't vote for none of them, I hate Collins music (so that option is not valid for me) and even though Peter's career is outstanding, Hackett is absolutely solid and coherent with his own style.

His atmospheric guitar was a trademark in his early years as a member of the amazing five and still is, then he added incredible acoustic sections not suitable for most Genesis albums, so he became one of the best guitar players (if not N 1) , but there's still more, Steve showed everybody he had talent enough to be an excellent composer sadly wasted when he was part of the Genesis, one of the reasons why he left the band after Wind & Wuthering.

"To Watch the Storms" reminds me of "Voyage of the Acolyte" because both are very dark and mysterious albums and he mixes symphonic prog' with more aggressive styles. Both are powerful albums, even when I stay with this one because Steve is reaching his peak as the years pass.

My favorite tracks are:

"The Devil is an English Man" which sounds similar to "Vampire with a Healthy Appetite" because of the obscure thematic and the amazing guitar and bass work.

"Frozen Statues" blends some jazzy piano with a delicate brass section by Rob Townsend, much more simple than the previous but creates a piano bar atmosphere very soft and somehow sensual.

"Brand New" starts with a short acoustic guitar solo which explodes in one second towards a classic Hackett sound like in Voyage of the Acolyte, a few more abrupt changes and an electric guitar section with percussion in the middle prepare for another guitar solo and a an acoustic ending, IMHO this song represents what prog must be.

"Rebbeca" is a softer song with acoustic guitar and piano but completed with strong percussion and aggressive explosions of energy, the precise piano by Roger King deserves special attention.

The only song I have some troubles with is "Mechanical Bride" a sort of King Crimson playing "Waiting Room Only" (from Genesis Revisited), hard, cold and as the name tells too mechanical, not my cup of tea, but with an excellent bass work.

I almost forgot the beautiful "The Moon Under Water" a 100% acoustic guitar track that leaves no doubt Steve Hackett is a virtuoso musician.

I know it's hard to accept 5 stars rating, but being this album (IMHO) the best release of 2003 and an absolute masterpiece, deserves no less, so I wont be unfair to rate it with anything lower.

Ivan_Melgar_M | 5/5 |

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