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Anthony Phillips

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Anthony Phillips 1984 album cover
3.76 | 124 ratings | 26 reviews | 13% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1981

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Prelude '84 (4:19)
2. 1984, Part 1 (19:06)
3. 1984, Part 2 (15:28)
4. Anthem 1984 (2:27)

Total Time 41:20

Bonus CD on 2008 remaster:
1. Prelude '84 (early stage mix) (4:26)
2. Ascension (5:16)
3. 1984 Part One (early stage mix) (12:49)
- Rule Britannia suite :
4. Sally's Theme (1:13)
5. Science & Technology (1:17)
6. Respect (0:57)
7. Church (0:49)
8. Military (1:37)
9. Power in the Land (1:43)
10. 1984 Part Two (early stage mix) (4:25)
11. Anthem 1984 (early stage mix) (2:08)
12. Poly Piece (demo) (16:39)

Total Time 53:19

Line-up / Musicians

- Anthony Phillips / keyboards, piano, guitar, Roland CR-78 drumbox, basic percussion, producer

- Morris Pert / timpani, tambourine, gong, congas, bell tree, vibra-slap, marimba, vibes, percussion
- Richard Scott / basic percussion, effects, vocal ideas
- Chris David / vocoder manipulation
- Anita David / vocoder manipulation

Releases information

Artwork: Under The Stairs Productions

LP RCA ‎- RCA LP 5036 (1981, UK)

CD Virgin ‎- CDOVD 321 (1991, UK)
2CD Voiceprint ‎- VP434CD (2008, UK) Remastered by Simon Heyworth with a bonus CD

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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ANTHONY PHILLIPS 1984 ratings distribution

(124 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(13%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(45%)
Good, but non-essential (30%)
Collectors/fans only (7%)
Poor. Only for completionists (5%)


Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by greenback
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Anthony Phillips mostly switched his guitar here for keyboards! What a performance! I wonder if Anthony is not as talented on keyboards as he is on guitars: seriously! He does not hesitate here to play TONS of modern keyboards, always VERY MELODIC and rhythmic. The omnipresent use of a drumbox is not annoying at all. Actually, many keyboards parts sound a bit like Suzanne Ciani, especially the "Seventh wave" album, in a less delicate way. It also sounds a bit like Larry Fast's Synergy of the 70's. Although the keyboards really have the 80's sound, it nevertheless sounds quite progressive New Age, not new wave at all. The keyboards are sometimes floating, but mainly they are rhythmic and melodic.

The second half of "1984 part 1" is absolutely memorable: very progressive, the melodic textures change very often; Morris Pert plays some excellent discreet percussions: it ends with a BEAUTIFUL mellow & melodic echoed texture. On "1984 part 2", rhythm seems more preponderant; the melodies are still quite present, but they are a bit less catchy and addictive than on "1984 part 1". "Anthem 1984" is more an ordinary track, only lasting around 2 minutes.

Rating: 4.5 stars

Review by daveconn
4 stars It's unlikely that anyone imagined a totalitarian future this tuneful, so perhaps "1984" is the story of a giant hamster (at least that would explain the cage on the front cover). No matter, since the real story here is how good this album is. Taking a welcome break from the antiquated acoustic music he's known for, ANTHONY PHILLIPS dives into the modern world of synthesizers on "1984", creating an instrumental album that sounds uncannily like TONY BANKS' subsequent work (notably "The Fugitive"). The drumbox and synthesizers can be initially off-putting, leading more than one critic to dismiss "1984" as pedestrian, but on subsequent sittings one discovers the music inside the machine, revealing an album ripe with progressive mind-candy moments. The album begins with "Prelude '84", a joyous introduction to the music ahead (the track was wisely chosen to represent the album on "PHILLIPS' Anthology"). The extended pieces, "1984 Part 1" and "1984 Part 2", introduce pleasant themes and veer off into interesting avenues, some dark and others playful. As a relative novice to the synthesizer, PHILLIPS is too easily enamored of effects at times, but the individual moments of melody and grandeur that arise elevate the musical discussion so that the weaker links are easily overlooked. Although MORRIS PERT is credited on all manner of percussion, the beat is anything but pert here, suggesting that PHILLIPS should have left the drumbox home and engaged Morris more. RICHARD SCOTT, responsible for effects and vocal ideas, does throw some neat ideas out there (he would work with PHILLIPS again on Invisible Men). "Anthem 1984" closes things on an elegiac note (maybe the hamster died), adding little in the bargain.

Even among ANTHONY PHILLIPS albums, "1984" is a sleeper. If you've dug too deep into the work of TONY BANKS or RICK WAKEMAN trying to get your fix of keyboard prog rock, "1984" could be the vintage you're looking for.

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars Orwellian?

Released in 1981, the same year as Rick Wakeman's album of the same name, I am initially struck by the similarities of the opening track on each. I don't know which came first, and in any case they are sufficiently different overall that there's no implication that one inspired the other, it appears to be just one of those co-incidences.

Given that the album is entirely instrumental, the title "1984" is pretty academic. There is nothing to link the different parts of that story to the music by way of section titles or narration, thus the listener is left to decide for themselves how the music and story relate, if at all.

The album consists of the main "1984" piece in two parts, book-ended by a couple of short tracks. Phillips largely rests his guitar, preferring to perform on keyboards for most of the time. This makes for a laid back, ambient feel a bit like a lightweight Mike Oldfield, with the occasion Banks/Wakeman-esque synth runs. Considering all three participants in the album contributed to the percussion, it is surprising that it is by far the album's Achilles heel, sounding rather processed and amateur.

A pleasant album, but one which has little to make me want to pull it out from the rack on regular occasions.

Review by chessman
4 stars An amazing album this! I bought it when it was released, back in '81, and have to say I was disappointed in it then. After the wonders of 'The Geese And The Ghost', 'Wise After The Event' and 'Sides', I was not expecting an album so keyboard dominated. I did, however, always enjoy the first and fourth tracks on the album. It was just the two longer pieces that didn't hold my attention - back then! Earlier this year, I spotted this in a second hand shop, and snapped it up for £2.50. The copy I thus obtained is the virgin remaster, and what a bargain it is! I still love the first and fourth tracks, but now also love equally the two middle 'epics'. For those who don't know Ant, they will probably think this an interesting album from some keyboard wizz. For those who do know him, well, it just shows his mastery of more than one instrument. Known, of course, primarily for his 12 string and lead guitar work with Genesis, this may come as a revelation to some. Not much guitar here, (though there is a bit, and mainly electric guitar at that!) but the keyboard work at times is stunning. Take the opener, 'Prelude '84'. it fades in slowly, using the infamous drum machine that was becoming popular at the time, then explodes into a church organ run of almost Bach-like ferocity. This is repeated a few times more throughout the piece, whilst being interspersed with some nice keyboard and guitar melding. A terrific start. '1984 part 1' follows and is rich in subtle keyboard play, with much percussion balancing the sound, and the odd guitar filling in here and there. There are some very catchy moments in this piece, and you will find yourself anticipating them as you become accustomed to the album. There is a moment when pitch-bend is used twice within a minute, first time upwards, then downwards and this is very effective too. '1984 part 2' follows and is almost as good, but doesn't have quite the diversity of the first part. It does reiterate certain themes, however, and is very effective. Towards the end of this there appears the only example of vocals on the album, though these are directed through what sounds like a voice box, and are only used to repeat the word '1984' a couple of times. Finally, comes the very brief yet stately, almost funereal 'Anthem 1984'. Very pompous and grand, it is simply some lovely string chords played to simulate an orchestra. But it is a wonderful way of ending the album. I would recommend anyone to listen to this through headphones, as there is a lot going on here. Comparisons? Well, Ant is Ant, but the nearest I can think of would be Mike Oldfield, round the time of Crisis and Five Miles Out, though Tubular Bells and even Platinum come to mind at times. I enjoy Oldfield as well, but this is a step up from anything he did, IMO. A very underrated album. If you like keyboard led instrumental albums, that hint at Mike Oldfield at his best, then this is for you. Conversely, if you don't possess any of Ant's other albums, then - this is nothing like his other albums! Be prepared!
Review by tszirmay
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars 1984, was a year that was supposed to herald the "end of the world" by some Orwellian account, where "Big Brother " would rule and where "sexcrimes" would be severely punished. Well, the year came and went without too much doom, just your usual daily superpower confrontations, wars all over the place, hunger in Africa and lots of "sexcrimes"! Post-disco society was rife with coke fueled partying and general decadence and music wise we had Bowie's histrionic "Diamond Dogs", Wakeman's shallow "1984", Eurythmics' ingenious soundtrack for the famed movie "1984". Prog was on the verge of awakening and resuscitation from many years of mediocrity (with the birth of Marillion and IQ both in 1983). New Wave was now old wave and grunge was getting its ass cheeks slapped, giving it a rather ominous future decade of "Nirvana" and Pearl Jam. In 1981, Anthony Phillips was ardently working on a piece of music that would reflect the upcoming period of doom and gloom and that would also stand the test of time, with enough symphonic stylings to soothe the poor, by then despondent progfan. Prog purists are somewhat unanimous in condemning any kind of drum machine or even programming as the antichrist (well what box could hope to rival Peart , Bruford or Moerlen?) and yet there were some interesting attempts at novel sounds (John Foxx , Thomas Dolby, New Muzik..). Ant's opus is without question among his top albums, not as accomplished as his upcoming 1990 symphonic masterpiece "Slowdance" which remains an all-time prog classic, but a scintillating piece of music nevertheless. The synthetic (Richard Scott) and natural (Morris Pert) percussives are way more intricate than your usual "boom-boom" fare, the reptilian bass-synth escalating the melodies to vivid heights with overlapping waves of synthesized spirals, crests and washes. This doesn't sound Oldfieldian, Eno-ish or TDream-like, as it offers up many heavenly melodies with lots of ingenious soloing. Hardly any crafty guitars or vocals, this is an all-keyboard and electronics fest, perhaps most akin to Geoff Downes' lone 1989 "New Dance Orchestra" masterpiece. From the opening fanfare of the brief "1984 - the Prelude", this album just takes off into some very enjoyable horizons, great driving music actually with the two main title tracks (parts 1 & 2) 15 and 19 minute plus epics, pulsating with a hypnotic strength that is simply remarkable, even 26 years later! It ends with the equally short but stunning "Anthem". To his absolute credit, Phillips always sought new musical playgrounds, whether pop, folk, ambient, symphonic, jazz, lounge, etc. adding his own little very personal touch, sometimes successfully , sometimes not. This delightful album remains a solid monument, a musical highlight in the barren birth of prog's renaissance. 4 wickets
Review by SouthSideoftheSky
3 stars War is peace, freedom is slavery, ignorance is strength, guitars are keyboards, and drums are drum machines

It is quite remarkable that Anthony Phillips and Rick Wakeman both released albums based on George Orwell's famous novel, 1984, the same year! What a coincidence! Personally, I prefer Wakeman's 1984 over Phillips' 1984.

One notices right away that this album is radically different from Anthony Phillips previous albums (and most of his subsequent albums as well). 1984 is a pure electronic affair and had this been Phillips' only album he might have been placed in the Progressive Electronic category. 1984 too has rather thin and monotonous synthesiser sounds and drum machines. There are no vocals on this album and neither are there any real drums, or guitars, or bass. The sound basically consists of drum machines and electronic keyboards.

The novel, 1984, is a masterpiece, but this album is not I'm afraid. However, it is nonetheless one of Anthony Philips' more interesting albums and it is recommended in addition to The Geese And The Ghost and Wise After The Event (which are stylistically radically different from the present album, and rather different from each other too)

Review by octopus-4
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR RIO/Avant/Zeuhl,Neo & Post/Math Teams
3 stars This work is quite unusual for Anthony Phillips. Instead of the usual acoustic guitar mixed with loops, we have a keyboard driven suite. Many people remarked the fact that this album and Rick Wakeman's 1984 have been published the same year. The difference is that Wakeman's work is effectively a concept album while this one could have had any other title. More than Wakeman, I see simiarities with the instrumental parts of Mike Rutherford's Smallcreep's Day, at least in the Prologue.

All the album has a typical old fashioned Genesis sound and is very lighter than the novel it's supposed to be inspired from. Not properly an easy listening, but everything but challenging for who is used with Genesis.

The problem with this album is that hard fans of Anthony Phillips may be disappointed by an electronic album. Electronic music fans won't find anything new.

The 1984 suite (tracks 2 and 3) has some discontinuities that make it similar to some Mike Oldfield's suites (that's of course not a bad thing). The suite is split into two parts probably because of the vinyl release. I don't see any other reason to have a part 1 and a part 2.

Part 2 is more close to Mike Oldfield than Part 1. Platinum or Crisis may be a reference.

The Anthem is just a closing track with an "orchestral string" arrangement which reminds to some romantic classical music e.g. Mahler.

Non-essential but not bad. Better than some more traditional Phillips' acoustic efforts.

Review by zravkapt
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars One of the best solo albums by a former member of Genesis. In fact, I think of those solo albums, only Peter Gabriel's third album is better. Even though the last Genesis album Phillips was on was 1970's Trespass, this sounds oddly similar to what Genesis themselves were doing at the time. I think I read once that Anthony borrowed Phil Collins' Roland drum machine for the recording of this album. If that's true, then you are hearing the very drum machine that was used on "In The Air Tonight", for example.

This is an electronic album, very different from most of Phillips' acoustic-oriented material. Besides the Roland drum machine, Anthony uses Polymoog and ARP 2600. He must have had that ARP synth kicking around since the 1970s; almost nobody was using ARP synths in the early 1980s. The sounds of R2D2 in the Star Wars films was made on an ARP 2600, for example. Most keyboardists had moved on to Yamahas and Rolands, or even Fairlights and Synclaviers. Although ARP made some of the best synthesizers in the '70s, the company itself was bankrupt by the turn of the decade.

There is also a little guitar and percussion. Supposedly there is Mellotron here too, but I can't hear it; it must be modified to the point where it sounds like another synth. There are no lyrics but there is a little bit of vocals done on vocoder. There is lots of gorgeous melodies on this album. All the music must have been composed on keyboards because this doesn't sound like something a guitarist would write. "Prelude '84" should have been a hit. I never really cared for "Anthem 1984". It's the shortest and weakest piece on the album. Not a good way to end it.

I don't get the idea of instrumental concept albums, but whatever. The two part title track is the heart and soul of the whole album. Never boring. Lots of variation throughout. The synth playing is really good. A lot of this sounds like symphonic electronic music with a steady beat. But even the drum machine is not just used for time-keeping; it is used to add some percussion effects as well. Overall a really great album, but if you are not into electronic music in general this may not be your cup of tea. 4 stars.

Review by ZowieZiggy
2 stars I don't like this "synthetic" album from Antony very much.

It is too much drum-machine oriented, too little (almost none actually) guitar parts. Just a combo of keyboards, totally eighties oriented and quite flat as far as I am concerned.

After a dreadful opener ("Prelude 1984") one gets two long and instrumental tracks without any emotion. They are cold, impersonal, and weak.

The only track that I like on this album is the short and closing "Anthem 1984". Finally a good piece of music! It is all harmony, poetry and melody. It is totally keyboards driven but in style.

I really wonder what came through Antony's mind while he released this work. Two stars is the real limit I can go to rate this below average album. Sub-par synth music from the eighties: that's all that it is.

Review by BrufordFreak
COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars This is an album that shocked me when I bought it having never heard it. A big fan of all-things Anthony Phillips, I had never really given his keyboard work much credit until this album (though I had the Camel, Mike Rutherford albums to which he had contributed keyboards). To me he was the God of the 12-string, a guitarist of serious artistry. But, with 1984, from the opening sound of the drum machine to the soon ensuing layers of keyboard synthesizers (with guitars skulking in the background!) Not a lyric or vocal to be found. (Ant's only weakness may be in those laryngeal chords God gave him.) I was blown away! The series of melodic movements Ant carries one through during the 41:23 monster 'song' that he created in honor of the passing of the year that writer George Orwell had made so iconic is incredible. I remember playing this album for weeks with joy and amazement, fully entranced by the journey. It was like Mike Oldfield great epics and Todd Rundgren's "Treatise on Cosmic Fire"--which I adored--but this was somehow better. How could computer drums, keyboard bass, and layers of synthesizer take the place of real rock instruments. I mean, I has heard songs like this but never a whole instrumental album delivered so seemless, so beautifully, so convincingly. (As I listen to it as I write I am reminded of the effect it always has of drawing me into an alternate world--making me feel as if I am floating within the liquid of the musical soundscape. No wonder Ant has found such success in scoring for BBC projects.) The variations of themes with and within each "Movement" is masterful--each revealing a new melodic theme that continues to steer the listener's journey of mystery, of tension and release, tension and release. All while stringing us along on that rather cheezy drum machine (a Roland CR-78)--though the great Morris Pert is along for the ride--providing background percussives. Amazing! And amazing is this album--certainly a long lost masterpiece that has too long flown under the radar and been ignored or dismissed. This is definitely an awesome listen. As good if not better than any electronic album before or of its time (and yes that includes Kitaro, Tomita, Larry Fast, Klaus and TD).
Review by GruvanDahlman
4 stars To Anthony Phillips is primarily associated with gentle progressive folk/pop/rock with an added sense of baroque music. At least I thinkt that's correct when speaking of his 70's output with what I am mostly familiar. Being a very gifted guitarist and possessing a mild mannered voice the music on "1984" comes across not as a schock but rather a surprise. Now, surprises can be sweet as sugar but also unpleasant in a myriad of ways.

There's a serious 80's sound on this album that cannot be denied and definately not ridiculed. One has to remember the time in which the music was recorded. Given that the electronics of the late 70's and early 80's might come across as cheezy, one must approach this album bearing that in mind. Gone are the guitars (for the most part anyway) and enter all sorts of electronic instruments, including drum machines. I love this approach and find it not only charming and endearing but also great in so many ways.

The novel "1984" is quite something. Dark and foreboding. The words of Orwell may be quite the challenge to transform into theater, movie or music. Some say it can't be done but I beg to differ. The darkness in the novel transforms beautifully into music, especially when conducted in this very much modern (for it's day) and electronic, futuristic fashion.

There is a deceptive gaiety in this opus similar to the songs in the book, made by machines and sporting a cold joy that is lacking in heart and soul. I suppose I really want to say "artificial joy". In the novel Big Brother supplies the citizens with supposedly everything needed, from chocolate to music. It is depressing but extremely evocative and exciting piece of literature. The music of Phillips is, however, not without heart. It is brilliant and manages to portray this false smile of totalitarianism to a degree of perfect splendour. And while the music is cold and futuristic, one feels the love Phillips has put into this project. The result is a very melodious and engaging experience, sporting a multitude of melodies one can't wait to hear.

This is truly the audio companion to the novel and I find it to be one of the finest examples of early 80's prog. While instrumentally lightyears away from his previous work, the essence of Phillips genius is there. Easily 4 stars.

Review by Progfan97402
4 stars Given my experience with Anthony Phillips has been hit and miss, I avoided 1984, assuming it would be pretty dreadful 1980s stuff. What I didn't expect was a progressive electronic direction he was going here! Imagine Tony Banks recording something more prog electronic, this is what you get. It's obvious that Ant did not shake off the spectre of Genesis, as the Genesis influence can be heard in many of his recordings (Wise After the Event is closest to late '70s Genesis, although side two has a bit of a Beatles thing going on). 1984 was obviously inspired by Orwell, and one might expect something more dark and ominous, he doesn't do that. It has a strangely more "positive vibe". One may complain about the '80s sounding synthesizers, but this is the early '80s, so no DX-7s, and I really like what he does with them here. Apparently he uses a PolyMoog and ARP 2600, just as Tony Banks had around the same time. I swear I hear a short amount of Mellotron flutes on "1984 Part 1". He's been known to use small amounts of tron, even as late as the apparently not-so-great Invisible Men, so I don't believe my ears are deceiving me. Also he uses a Roland CR-78 drum machine, I'm sure inspired by Phil Collins using on one Brand X's Product, Genesis' Duke and Abacab, and Phil's own Face Value. I was a bit put off by the pop-oriented "Prelude '84", sounding like Tony Banks during his more pop-oriented moments, but after that it moves away from that, to some really nice and beautiful passages. This album really took me by surprise. It's not The Geese & the Ghost, but it's a very good album in its own right, and I probably more recommend this for fans of progressive electronic than those used to his more acoustic-based stuff. He pretty much doesn't come near a guitar here, so that might disappoint many, but he's fully capable at keyboards as demonstrated here. Well worth having, especially for fans of electronic music.
Review by VianaProghead
4 stars Review Nş 378

Some consider Anthony Phillips as one of the true unsung heroes of the progressive rock music. A major influence on Genesis' classic early sound and his suddenly departure from the band in 1970 was regarded as a major blow in much the same way as Peter Gabriel and Steve Hackett's departures, some years later. Phillips cited several reasons for his decision including, the stage fright, the ill health and the disillusionment with the band's collective musical work. It would take almost seven years for his debut solo studio album 'The Geese And The Ghost', released in 1977, to be materialised. In addition to writing the album and recording the demos, he spent the intervening years studying composition, orchestration and piano. By 1980 Phillips had released four solo studio albums and had a fifth one being readied for release. As none of his previous albums had set the world alight, a change was on the cards and so Phillips started playing around with synthesizers, an instrument that he had not fully explored on his previous albums. The result of that exploration was his next studio album, named after George Orwell's apocalyptic view of the future, '1984'.

So, '1984' is the sixth studio album of Anthony Phillips and was released in 1984. Unlike 'The Geese And The Ghost' and 'Wise After The Event', albums I intend review on Progarchives, the list of musicians on '1984' is very small and very few musical instruments were used. The line up on the album is Anthony Phillips (piano, keyboards, Roland CR-78 drum box, guitar and basic percussion), Richard Scott (basic percussion, effects and vocal ideas) and Morris Pert (percussions). So, '1984' is an instrumental electronic album with some vocal effects and some variety of percussion.

The cover art of the album shows a picture of a small cage, which is probably a reference to Winston's cage, affixed to his face, cited on the '1984' book. '1984' is a world's famous novel, written in 1949 by George Orwell, an English writer and journalist who also wrote another famous and satirical novel named 'Animal Farm', in 1945. '1984' is a literary political fiction novel of the social fiction subgenre. On the story of the novel, the individual is always subordinated to the date and to the Party, which manipulates and control the humanity. The principal protagonist, Winston Smith, is a civil servant who works in the Ministry of Truth and is responsible for revising historical facts and changes them in order to perpetuate the Party and its big leader, the Big Brother. This kind of life, created inside Smith a great disillusion what caused him to rebel against the Big Brother. That led to his arrest, torture and later conversion. Many of the terms and concepts used on '1984' such as the Big Brother and Orwellian became contemporary, and are related to propaganda, lies and manipulation, in service of the totalitarianism, especially in the political regimes of only one-party.

A completely electronic, instrumental keyboard album recorded by a rock guitarist, '1984' remains quite a peculiarity. Consisting of four connected pieces, the album is both musical and sonic an excellent piece. The sheer creativity of the music is dynamic and even listening to it all of these years later. I was still taken aback by its adventuress qualities and depth. The first track, 'Prelude '84', is a mix of chord progressions influenced by Tony Banks and some Rick Wakeman like flourishes. Towards the end of the piece, a guitar with a bit of crook starts. The second track, '1984, Part 1', begins with keyboard chords accompanied by some embellishments and underlaid by the rhythm machine. This is interrupted by some bombastic transitions, then to go into a synthesizer solo, then a driving theme is initiated leting Phillips doesn't fall asleep, topics and moods are constantly being changed. The third track, '1984, Part 2', the cheerful arpeggio tones, which begin with a quick rhythm, are reminiscent of the Mike Oldfield's instrumental pieces. It sounds similar to '1984, Part 1'. This isn't strange because both are parts of the same track. The fourth track 'Anthem 1984' is an atmospheric sad looking theme, as if Anthony Phillips was already seeing all humanity in the Orwellian's cage. This short keyboard number is characterized by a wide keyboard sound, which makes this piece sounds like a 'hymn-like'.

Conclusion: '1984' is completely different from 'The Geese And The Ghost' and 'Wise After The Event'. 'The Geese And The Ghost' is a very beautiful and almost an acoustic classic album clearly influenced by the medieval era and its music flows together as a continuous piece. It represents a real trip back in the history of time. 'Wise After The Event' is essentially an album composed with a collection of beautiful guitar tracks. But, surprisingly, on '1984' all music was totally composed for keyboard instruments. Everybody knows that Phillips is a brilliant guitarist, especially on classical guitar. His previous albums were mostly acoustic guitar based. However, '1984' is totally dominated by synthesizers, apart some real percussion played by Pert. Then, we were also able to know that Phillips is also a brilliant keyboardist. So, '1984' is an excellent album, where the sound of the keyboards is floating, rhythmic and melodic. The album is very melodic and harmonious and confirms that Phillips is also a great songwriter. This is a great addition to your collection.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

Latest members reviews

4 stars AP shows a tremendous versatility and progress on this album which is ambitious and progressive at the same time. Tons of synths at all layers: sequencer chords, leads and accompanying notes, all done as if he were no newbie in this field. Although playing is not virtuosic, it is confident and w ... (read more)

Report this review (#2242784) | Posted by sgtpepper | Saturday, August 10, 2019 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Perhaps this album is one-of-a-kind example of a style on the borderline with not so neighboring musical disciplines. Apart from progressive rock, we all can give a lot of examples of progressive jazz, progressive metal, progressive fusion... even progressive pop (sic!). But who can give an example ... (read more)

Report this review (#1057378) | Posted by proghaven | Thursday, October 10, 2013 | Review Permanlink

4 stars I was a bit disappointed when the first time I bought this album, because this is my first Anthony Phillips' album that I bought. At that time, my expectation was that I could enjoy Ant's famous 12-guitar works such as in his other albums. Sadly, from the first minute until the end, all I coul ... (read more)

Report this review (#394048) | Posted by interstellarboy | Friday, February 4, 2011 | Review Permanlink

4 stars After a series of albums that combined differing approaches with similar instruments, Anthony Phillips decided to try something different. His albums, The Geese and the Ghost, Wise After the Event, Sides, and Private Parts and Pieces were mostly guitar based, mostly acoustic, well respected, y ... (read more)

Report this review (#243682) | Posted by SonicDeath10 | Thursday, October 8, 2009 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I have had to reconsider this album time and time again. At first I wasn't very fond of it, but that has changed now. This is a perfect "time capsule" record. Meaning, if you had to bury a bunch of stuff from the 80's that would be dug up later so as to get a peek into what life was like back ... (read more)

Report this review (#97189) | Posted by Mcgraster | Sunday, November 5, 2006 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I always liked this album from the start. Apart from some real percussions (played by Morris Pert) it is a true synth album. If you expect some of those clinical 80s sounds then fortunately you will be disappointed: All the keyboards are analogue synths and seem to be played in real time without ... (read more)

Report this review (#95828) | Posted by madnil | Thursday, October 26, 2006 | Review Permanlink

1 stars This is just a dull, uninspired piece of monotonous synth-music. It sounds as if it was a work of someone who just bought synthesiser and is heavily charmed by the very fact, that he has one... It doesn't offer any kind of beauty or excitement. Melodies are rather primitive, structure of comp ... (read more)

Report this review (#95800) | Posted by kajetan | Thursday, October 26, 2006 | Review Permanlink

4 stars A tuneful surprise! Admittedly, this is somewhat of an obscure album, but for no good reason I can think of. Phillips must have been mucking about on his keyboards one day and thought . . . hmm, I beleive there's a song in here! Really, I imagine him fiddling around with his drum machine, whic ... (read more)

Report this review (#72121) | Posted by | Friday, March 17, 2006 | Review Permanlink

4 stars What do you get when you turn a prog visionary loose in a studio with stacks of keyboards? Answer: 1984. This is BIG, complex, layered album. Even today it holds up. Lots of things going on here. My favourite things is the vocals through the box chanting "19 - 80 - 4 . . . . . 1984" That is ve ... (read more)

Report this review (#71360) | Posted by | Tuesday, March 7, 2006 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Anthony Phillips was the original guitarist for Genesis (he played on their first two albums, "From Genesis To Revelation" and "Trespass"). Since leaving the band in 1970, he has embarked on a long, productive solo career, making many brilliant solo albums of all different styles of music: roc ... (read more)

Report this review (#68996) | Posted by | Friday, February 10, 2006 | Review Permanlink

5 stars this album is a really strange one, with lots of different textures all around. the first 10 times i listened to it i did not really like it, but it grew very much one me, now it is one of ant`s best albums imho, be shure to buy this one, you will not regret it, just take some time with the alb ... (read more)

Report this review (#56756) | Posted by zebehnn | Thursday, November 17, 2005 | Review Permanlink

4 stars 3.75 stars! 3 stars doesn't do it justice. 4 stars might be a little too generous. But hey, it's Christmas Eve, I'm feeling generous! Let's go with 4. Besides, that's the last number in the title of this album, and it's how many tracks are on it - 4! Yes, the drumbox and synthes sound a little ... (read more)

Report this review (#25962) | Posted by | Friday, December 24, 2004 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Just dug this out after 10 years or more, what do i think... It's great, if you like keyboards/instrumentals with a hint of electronics, you'll love it Lots of well played/multi layered keyboards, some times it sounds like mike oldfield in his early days. good mix of moody and up tempo 'jolly' bi ... (read more)

Report this review (#25959) | Posted by | Wednesday, March 3, 2004 | Review Permanlink

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