GENTLE GIANT – Edge of Twilight

Talking Elephant

Having charted with the (for them) atypically psychedelic ‘Kites’, Brit 60s’ pop-soulsters Simon Dupree And The Big Sound recognised that you had to get ahead to get on and promptly transmogrified into one of the defining progressive acts of the day. GG epitomised the genre not solely in terms of serious hair and greatcoats, but in forging seemingly diverse music genre into a cohesive new form that became synonymous with the big-thinking band.

Sophisticated, complex compositions tapping a broad range of themes and issues rendered to a battery of instrumentation were served with time-signature hopping panache. Much of the band’s finest moments are to be found in its early work for the cultish Vertigo label. Recognising that when the fruits taste as good as these, adding any perceived value ultimately comes down to how you present them, this 2CD comp comes into its own.

While the booklet is relatively perfunctory with a few pictures and brief biography, the selection and sequencing of tracks is exemplary and it’s clear a lot of thought has gone into how best to bring the band’s many values into a single entertainment.

Far more than a casual flat-lined ‘dump’, ‘Edge of Twilight’ forges a more rounded appreciation of the talent, pitching from the symphonic ‘Three Friends’ to the gentle, touching ‘Think of Me with Kindness’ by way of wig-outs like ‘A Cry For Everyone’. The sources are wisely, the first four albums, and the whole never flags once to the end. A great introduction to an inspirational act.

****

Peter Muir


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Featured Albums w/c 6 July (Mon-Fri)

09:00-12:00 MANDOKI SOULMATES Living In The Gap (Red Rock Production/Cleopatra)
12:00-13:00 MAGNUS KARLSSON’S FREE FALL – We Are The Night (Frontiers)
14:00-16:00 BEN REEL The Nashville Calling (B.Reel Records)

Power Plays w/c 6 July (Mon-Fri)

ZENITH MOON Gypsy (Golden Robot Records)
RARITY Leave It Alone (New Damage Records)
THE RISING I Want You (indie)
MANDOKI SOULMATES Young Rebels (Red Rock Production/Cleopatra)
LA GUNS Well Oiled Machine (Golden Robot Records)



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