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Voyage of the Acolyte Extra tracks, Import, Original recording remastered

59 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Extra tracks, Import, January 24, 2006
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Editorial Reviews

Best known as the main guitarist for Genesis from 1971 to 1977, Steve Hackett has long been regarded as one of the leading progressive rock guitarists of his generation. This remastered pressing of his 1975 album features 10 tracks including the 2 bonus tracks 'Ace Of Wands' (live) & 'Shadow Of The Hierophant' (extended playout version). EMI. 2005.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (January 24, 2006)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Extra tracks, Import, Original recording remastered
  • Label: Caroline World Service
  • ASIN: B000AM1TGC
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,626 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

31 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Ananda7 on January 23, 2006
Format: Audio CD
This is rightly considered one of the masterpieces of progressive rock. It has the whole spectrum of the genre-- great, unpredictable arrangements (Ace of Wands), esoteric lyrics (The Hermit, Star of Sirius, Shadow of the Hierophant), manic instrumental sections (The Tower Struck Down), astoundingly beautiful moments (Hands of the Priestess), and the drama of classical-like buildups (Shadow of the Hierophant.) In order to perform progrock, you had to have the skills to pull off a wide range of musical moods.

Three vocalists contribute a variety of styles-- Steve himself delivers a quiet folkish song, Phil Collins his high and airy style, and an operatic approach from soprano Sally Oldfield (sister of Mike Oldfield). Steve's brother John Hackett is superb on flute and ARP synthesizer, while John Acock provides moody keyboard backdrops. Steve himself gives a more restrained performance than you would expect from a lead guitarist let loose on his first solo album, but his allegiance if first and foremost to compositional development, as was the tradition in progrock.

I'm not much of an audiophile, but I noticed the improvement in this disc immediately. This was one of the first albums I bought on CD, and I was glad to purchase it again for the improved quality. If you want to begin to explore Steve Hackett's career, or just want to relive a peak of the genre, start right here in 1975 when progrock was still one of the most commercially uncompromised genres in the history of popular music.
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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Jeffrey J.Park VINE VOICE on April 1, 2007
Format: Audio CD
Recorded in June/July of 1975 (soon after Peter Gabriel left Genesis), this debut solo album by Steve more or less pointed in the direction that Genesis would travel following the Lamb Lies down on Broadway (1974). The album was also somewhat successful and reached No. 26 in England and No. 191 in America, which was a source of encouragement for the guys in Genesis (they were recording A Trick of the Tail at the time). More importantly however, Voyage of the Acolyte gave Steve an opportunity to record music that had been dismissed by some of the guys in Genesis.

Joining Steve (electric and acoustic guitars; mellotron; harmonium, bells, autoharp, vocal, effects) were Genesis mates Mike Rutherford (bass guitar, Taurus bass pedals, fuzz 12-string); and Phil Collins (drums, percussion, vibes, vocals); along with Steve's brother John Hackett (flute, ARP synthesizer, bells); keyboardist John Acock (Elka Rhapsody, mellotron, harmonium, piano); Sally Oldfield (vocal); Robin Miller (oboe, cor anglais); and Nigel Warren-Green (cello). For those of you Brand X fans out there (like me) Percy Jones contributes an excellent bass part on A Tower Struck Down. The musicians on this album are all excellent and I loved hearing Phil's drumming, not to mention his vocal contributions. Steve of course, shines throughout and his playing is both delicate and adventurous.

The eight tracks on the album range in length from 1'34" to 11'45" - the pieces are all superb and it is clear that Steve was (and is) an excellent composer. This is a very well recorded and soft album loaded with dreamy mellotron and warm synthesizer tones all over the place.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 11, 2002
Format: Audio CD
Steve Hackett's first solo album, a largely instrumental group of songs, remains something incredible, almost 30 years after its release.
The tracks on this disc are predominantly instrumentals, featuring lots of trademark Hackett guitar leads as well as some delicious synth playing and acoustic guitar. "Ace of Wands" is a magnificent mini-epic full of outstanding playing, memorable compostition and perfect instrumentation. "Hand of the Priestess" pats 1 and two as well as "the Lovers" are soft, pastoral pieces featuring delicate acoustic guitar and superb flute leads. "The Hermit" and the "Star of Sirius" feature vocals by Phil Collins and Hackett himself. "Star" has particularily impressive guitar/mellotron textures accompanied by synth and vibes, which border on spacey at times.
"Shadow of the Hierophant," the disc's lengthy closer is a very nice operatic sort of tune featuring vocals of that style by Sally Oldfield. The epic fadeout of the song is not to be missed, but it drags on for far too long, which explains the detraction of a star. "A Tower Struck Down" is the only tense song on this otherwise mellow, often pretty collection of songs.
Fans of Hackett's later work will find this somewhat different from his other material, but most of his followers as well as fans of early Genesis and prog in general will find this incredibly melodic album a real treat.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By The Reverend on March 22, 2007
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I bought this on import LP in 1975 and have been listening to it a couple of times a year for 32 years. I know this recording. At least I thought I did. The remastering of this music is steller. I am hearing things in this original mix that I have never heard before. I even compared this to the initial CD release and there is no comparison. The acoustic instruments have much more depth and presence. The electric soundstage is well balanced. For the first time, the bass and bass pedals can be heard in full depth and brilliance. There could be some serious foundation shaking with the right subwoofer. I always believed this LP could have fit comfortably between Foxtrot and Selling England if Genesis had recorded it. The only thing that keeps this work from being a true Genesis project is the absence of Peter Gabriel's vocals and flute playing. This recording IS that good. It has always been my favorite Hackett release. You need to add this to your collection.
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