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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Gordon Giltrap Band

Air Waves

Review by Gary Hill

This is quite a strong instrumental CD. Musically it’s more mellow than rocking, but it isn’t a purely sedate affair. The music here ranges from prog to fusion crossing into folk and classical. I like this set a lot. This particular disc is a newly expanded edition.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2014  Volume 4 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Black Lightning

Fusion and prog are deftly combined in this instrumental rocker. It’s high energy and melodic. It’s also rather fun.

El Greco
This acoustic guitar driven piece merges folk, prog and world music into an effective number. It’s pretty and expressive.
Heroes
Back into electrified and more fusion related territory, in some ways this makes me think of Rick Wakeman’s solo work just a bit. There are definitely neo-classical elements built into this. I’m definitely reminded of Yes at times, too. Yet, there are some funky moments.
Haunted Heart
Another melodic prog piece, this again calls to mind Yes quite a bit. There are more jazz elements here, though. In part those come through via the saxophone. It’s an intricate tapestry.
Rainbells
Somehow the intricate guitar that dances around this makes me think of Genesis. The arrangement, though, is perhaps closer to something like Rick Wakeman solo or Yes.
Dreamteller
Fairly mellow and intricate, this has elements of prog, jazz and classical built into it. It’s a really powerful piece of music despite remaining fairly sedate.
Reaching Out
Delicate guitar is heard throughout much of this. There is a definite world music vibe to the piece.
Sad Skies
Although this jazzy number has a bit of a sad tone, there seems to be a glimmer of hope in the midst of it. It’s quite a pretty piece.
Air Waves
The title track is definitely packed full of fusion goodness. It’s not all that long, but it makes up for the lack of quantity with plenty of quality.
Empty
This acoustic guitar based number is pretty and quite classical in nature.
Lake Isle
I love this delicate and intricate acoustic guitar piece. It’s very pretty.
Lost Love
This is quite a dynamic and diverse ride that covers a lot of territory between fusion and progressive rock. It has some especially tasty instrumental work.
Blue Haze
This is a bluesy jam that’s quite nice.
The Snow Goose Part 1
This is the first of four bonus tracks. The short piece is quite a pretty and powerful one. That power comes from the evocative melodies as it is a mellow number.
The Snow Goose Part 2
I like the pretty and gentle intricacies of this piece. It’s another strong one.
The Snow Goose Part 3
The acoustic guitar drives this, but it’s packed full of powerful classical music. The layers of sound add to the magic of the piece, but this is one that is really very much a classical piece.
Sad Skies (edited version)
This is an alternate take on the earlier piece.

 

 
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