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Steve Hackett - Darktown CD (album) cover


Steve Hackett


Eclectic Prog

3.79 | 309 ratings

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Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer
4 stars Definitly this is a grower. I had to listen to Darktown several times to really start to appreciate this album. The tacklist seemed awful at first: very different, very dark (of course! the title is darktown, isnīt it?) and totally uncharacteristic. But then I started to pay atention to the guitar sound and there was: beautiful, tasteful, creative as ever. Then the songs started to make more sense and then, slowly, I found several good songs. Still different of cours, but good.

Maybe the initial bad impression wouldnīt be so great if the first two tracks, Omega Metallicus (too jazz rock) and Darktown (too King Crimson-like, without the spirit) were not the openers. They are good tunes, ok, but again, too alien for a Steve Hackett fan. Man Overboard is the first one to really capture my atention with its great acoustic guitar work and real nice melody line. I really liked to hear Jim Diamondīs voice after so many years and it worked very well on another beautiful ballad (Days Of Long Ago). There are some lesser songs (The Golden Age Of Stream is surely one of them), but ultimately none is bad. Jane Austerīs Door is really interesting for brazilians since he re-uses the beautiful guitar riff he lent to singer Ritchie in 1983 (Richard Court is an englishman who lives in Brazil, he sings mostly in portuguese and had much success in the 80īs). In Memorian is another highlight, a real synphonic beauty that closes the CD. Wanna see Steve Hackett doing bossa nova/lounge jazz songs? Just hear Dreaming With Open Eyes. A great guitar instrumental? Go to Twice Around The Sun. And so goes on. With ups and downs (fortunatly more ups than downs).

Production is veryu good and the musicians involved are, as always, simply terrific (some great bass lines!).

Conclusion: A very good CD. It interesting and refreshing to see how much SH tries to develop and try new styles and challenges. It may not always work, but you at least he does not repeat himself like so many other guitar heroes do. My final rating should be 3.5 stars, but for his boldness and innovations I guess he deserves an extra half star. Be sure to hear this CD with atention, several times and without prejudice. There are some real gems to be found here. Recommended.

Tarcisio Moura | 4/5 |


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