Sunday, April 29, 2007

Hail to Power and to Glory's way.

While langiushing in an Amsterdam campground in '72, I was discussing progressive rock with some English lads. Having just recently discovered Yes, I was pretty taken with their music.

One of the English boys said "Ah! then you must, when you get back to the States, get some Hawkwind, Genesis, and, the best of them all: Gentle Giant.

Well, I did. Hawkwind, early home to Lemmy Kilmister, later of Motörhead, eh, not so much.

But Genesis, was pretty freakin' impressive. That is, until original leader Peter Gabriel left and drummer Phil Collins (no link, he's a wanker) ran to the front of the stage and turned them into a Vegas lounge act: "When the Lamb, hey hey, lies down, hey! on Broadway!!" Jeebus!

Gentle Giant was a wonder. With music so quirky and complex they made Yes seem as tame as The Osmonds, they offered a breathtaking ride with chord changes, tempo changes, instrument changes, and serious skills. I only saw them live once, at the Santa Monica Civic, in I think 1973, but they blew me back in my seat and didn't let up. Clearly not everyone's cup of tea, but undeniably a great band.

Here they are doing Proclamation:

And here is a medley from the album "Octopus":