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Gilgamesh / Gilgamesh
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Digitally remastered edition of their 1975 debut album These Canterbury stylists were formed in 1972 with the core of the band built around Alan Gowen on keyboards and Mike Travis on drums. At various times, the line-up included former Caravan and Hatfield & the North member Richard Sinclair, Mont Campbell (formerly of Egg) and Neil Murray. Gilgamesh is a classic of the Canterbury style and is sure to be a much sought after release by all aficionados of the genre. Esoteric. 2011.
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Overall, if you are a fan of the mid 70s RETURN TO FOREVER sound, with keyboard-guitar centered pieces that express heady, complicated compositions, you might enjoy the album. However, if you are looking for Canterbury type art rock songs with vocals, or jazz fusion with a groove oriented beat, exploring extended improvisations, you will find this work unfocused, overly cerebral and dry. ITs not that grooves don't occur, its just that none of them last more than 5 or ten seconds, before a whole new groove, in fact a whole new song, seems to flash in your face. This is one of those instances, where I wish I could give the album three and a half stars, since its a little better than OK, but not by much.
Gilgamesh boasts the complex time signitures of 70s fussion, sounding at times like a less dissonent Mahavisnu Orchestra. The technical ability is outstanding, and the bands insticts are melodic. Though the music is extremely complicated, the songs never get lost in the complexity.
Most either love or hate 70s fusion. This won't change the minds of those that lothe the music, but if it is your taste, this album is for you.