The first live performance ofThe Steve Hillage Band in 25 years!
London, UK – The Gong Family Unconvention at the Melkweg club in Amsterdam in November 2006 was a unique 3 day event in which all the original members of the legendary psychedelic band Gong came together and performed their own individual sets.
Guitar legend Steve Hillage, who was a prominent part of the “classic” Gong line-up of 1973-75 felt it was a great opportunity perform again some of the songs from his 1970s solo albums. Steve Hillage is widely considered a guitar innovator, and is associated with the Canterbury scene, working in experimental domains since the late 1960s. Besides his critically acclaimed solo recordings, along with Gong, Steve has been a member of the ensembles Khan and System 7.
Steve’s live set at the Gong Family Unconvention in 2006 provoked a rush of excitement and emotion at the event, and this was beautifully captured on film and recording – and is now available on this DVD and CD.
Performing with Steve were his long-time musical partner Miquette Giraudy on synthesisers, Gong bass player Mike Howlett who played on Steve’s ‘Fish Rising’ album from 1975, and Gong drummer Chris Taylor who started playing with the band in the 1990s. Also guesting was Basil Brooks on synthesiser, who played in Steve’s band in the ’70s.
Tracks played were as follows:
- Hello Dawn (from the album ‘Motivation Radio’)
- It’s AH Too Much (the Beatles cover – from the album ‘L’)
- Aftaglid (from the album ‘F ish Rising’)
- Solar Musick Suite (from ‘Fish Rising’)
- The Salmon Song (from ‘Fish Rising’)
- These Uncharted Lands (from the album ‘For To Next’ and never before
In addition the audio CD has 4 exclusive bonus tracks from Steve’s 1970’sarchive. Tracks recorded live at Amsterdam’ s Sonesta Koepelkerk on Dec 14th 1979. The DVD has bonus material in the form of a substantial interview with Steve and Miquette. And also background clips from around the Gong Melkweg event.
The Audio for the CD and DVD was mixed by Steve in his A-Wave Studio. And has a rich and warm sound. The DVD was edited by long time friend and Gong family member Harry Williamson in his Spring Studio in Melbourne Australia.
If indeed Steve does create some more music in the psychedelic rock sphere this powerful and unique live recording can be seen as a launch pad. Steve currently sees his System 7, Mirror System, and Steve Hillage Band entities as operating in parallel and has been writing some new rock-based material
for a possible Steve Hillage Band album for release in 2013/14.
A warm Live DVD/CD package for every Steve Hillage fan.
Ron “thedoorwaymaster” Vermulst
English Electric: was a British industrial manufacturer. Founded in 1918, it initially specialised in industrial electric motors and transformers. Its activities would expand to include railway locomotives and traction equipment, steam turbines, consumer electronics, guided missiles, aircraft and computers. Big Big Train present us with eight new songs. It take us on a journey through the English landscape, from the mining towns of the north to the chalk hills of the south.
Along the way, extraordinary tales are told of inland navigators, art-forgers, miners and men of industry.Stories of people who dream of the daylight but are given up to the depths.
English Electric is a celebration of the people that work on, and under, the land and who made the hedges and the fields, the docks, the towns and the cities.
‘English Electric (Part One)’ is a joy from beginning to end.
Having appeared as a guest on their last release drummer Nick D’Virgilio (formerly Spock’s Beard) is now a permanent member. On English Electric, Big Big Train, with special guest musicians including Andy Tillison (The Tangent), Louis Philippe, Rachel Hall (Stackridge), Danny Manners (Robert Wyatt, Cathal Coughlan), are joined by a brass band and string quartet.
This album has a big rich sound with overwhelming nuances. Great songwriting and craftmenship and wonderfull harmonies. The first feeling i’ve got was that it had a sound that was familiar.
Old genesis came into mind but that would sell these guys short. This is wihout a doubt 2012 best album. The First Rebreather blew my mind a way. And that was the perfect setting for the rest of the album.
- The First rebreather
- Winchester from ST Giles Hill
- A Boy in Darkness
Ron “thedoorwaymaster” Vermulst
English Electric Part One will be followed by English Electric Part Two in March 2013.
This Progressive supergroup “Amaran’s Plight” is delivering the goods all the way.
From “Spock’s Beard” Drummer/Singer Nick D’virgillio to “Shadow gallery’s” Gary Wehrkamp.
In 2006 the idea for the band Amaran’s Plight came to form and they immediately went to work for an impressive debut album to write and record.
The Music can be seen as sometimes very intense and technically with flashy solos adorned, sometimes calm and collected with a nice tension.
Good examples are “Incident At Haldeman ‘Lake’, the obligatory epic ‘Shattered Dreams’ and ‘Turning Point’ which has a nice atmosphere like Queensryche.
One of the highlights of this summer!
All in all not a bad album indeed!!!
Ron ” the doorwaymaster” Vermulst
The four songs together account for about 28 minutes of modern prog that are best descibred as a mix between Porcupine Tree and Riverside.
The songs does a little bit linger in the same rhythms.
The overall feeling is good but there is much room for improvement.
For the most part the songs are well written and played.
Sadly the one weak link is the singer of the lack of a good vocalist.
I very like the thirds song Witness of Happiness.
I hear in the back ground influences of Pendragon,IQ and Steve Hackett.
Ron “thedoorwaymaster” Vermulst
Strawberry Fields music is a strange blend of the old and the new,
of rock guitars and soft keyboards,loops and psychedelic soundscapes.
Strawberry Fields is a rock band from Poland. Created in 2008 by Wojtek Szadkowski (Collage, Satellite, Peter Pan) fascinated by the voice of Robin (Marta Kniewska).
On the band’s debut album entitled “Rivers Gone Dry” Robin is supported by the intelligent guitar play of Sarhan Kubeisi (Satellite), simple yet effective bass lines of Jarek Michalski (Satellite), and Wojtek Szadkowski’s keyboards and drums. Guest appearance was done by keyboardist Krzys Palczewski (Satellite) Who is now a member of the band.
It’s a perfect album for the lovers of such bands as Goldfrapp, Portishead or Massive Attack. Marta’s voice will also satisfy fans of Anneke van Giersbergen (The Gathering/ Agua De Annique).
But you can find strong pop melodies and a bit of Clannad within.
The music has a poppy,catchy feeling.
On the whole this is a fine and pleasant album too listen too.
Ron ”thedoorwaymaster” Vermulst