Gentle Giant. . Whatever happened (merged several similar threads)

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Francis A Carr, Jul 19, 2017.

  1. Mook

    Mook Forum Resident

    All the albums from Three Friends to Free Hand are amazing.

    To be completely honest I've not heard any earlier or later stuff than that.
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  2. Trinkywinky

    Trinkywinky Active Member

    Same and three friends the best ones in my opinion
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  3. DJ LX

    DJ LX Forum Resident

    Madison WI
    The first two albums - produced by Tony Visconti - are fantastic. A bit more atmospheric and, at times, pastoral than the later albums.
    JakeM, drum_cas, Mook and 1 other person like this.
  4. I wonder if the record company had swapped the sides of the The Power & The Glory / Playing The Game (short edit) single, wouldn't it have had an at least reasonable success instead of having flopped like it did? PTG is indeed very catchy, clever, and has tinges of The Beatles in the choruses (guitar with Leslie effect).
  5. Dok

    Dok Forum Resident

    Ep108: Derek Shulman of Gentle Giant

    A recent podcast interview with Derek Shulman.

    "Syd Barrett blew the whistle on the Moles" !!

    "Believe it or not, Gentle Giant have had 3 number 1 records in the last year in North America, albeit sampled songs from artists in the hip hop world..." (Common and Tribe Called Quest being named)

    He says that 'Knots' has been sampled by the band Run the Jewels and is in the upcoming movie 'Black Panther' and is even in the trailer. I can't hear it, maybe some of you with better ears can.

  6. Dok

    Dok Forum Resident

    He also talks about the missing multi tracks. If I understood him correctly they have all of them for the albums past 'In A Glass House'. Bring on 'Freehand' then!
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  7. alchemy

    alchemy Forum Resident

    Sterling, VA
    Don't know what happened, but when I lived in Iowa their records were hard to find. Most were imports, which were expensive .
    No Internet back in the Mid 1970's, so it was hard to find info on them. They never toured anywhere near us.
    Did they ever do much touring in the US
  8. A lot (as of 1972)! Here is the full picture:
  9. Dok

    Dok Forum Resident


  10. StarThrower62

    StarThrower62 Forum Resident

    Central NY
    1971's Acquiring the Taste is also an excellent album. The debut is a little weaker. The official live album, Playing The Fool has many great performances. And Interview is worth picking up for Empty City, and a few other great tracks.
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  11. StarThrower62

    StarThrower62 Forum Resident

    Central NY
    It's already been going on for several years. The band is called Three Friends. There are some excellent performances on YouTube.
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  12. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road

    in recent times i have become a big fan of gentle gent. i had never heard of them until about a year or so ago. fortunately they started the 5.1 releases around the time and i gobbled them up like candy.
    I have all the regular releases and no bootlegs, but am just interested whether anyone shares my enthusiasm for this brilliant band?
    what do you like?
    do you have a problem with missing piece or civilian?
    not a huge fan of giant for a day myself, but what do you think?
  13. Siegmund

    Siegmund Vinyl Sceptic

    Britain, Europe
    You'll find lots of love for them on here.

    They are unfairly a 'second tier' prog band in terms of awareness/impact but they are very much 'first tier' in terms of creativity and invention.

    Like most people, I prefer the early releases but I can live with the later ones. Playing The Fool is one of the finest live albums ever made.

    Octopus is my favourite: it seems to be most peoples' favourite.
  14. BrokenByAudio

    BrokenByAudio Forum Resident

    Lots of their fans around here! I saw them live six times. :D:D:D

    Missing Piece has got a few tracks on it that I like a great deal: For Nobody, and Winning. I also love I'll Bet You Thought We Couldn't Do it. (I suspect I am in the minority on that one.) I liked Civilian as well--clearly another departure from the road they'd traveled so well and that was the last show I saw--in Miami, Florida). To claim minority status again, I'll say that I like the title track to Giant For a Day. That record is the weakest of the lot IMO.

    The bigger question to you is which of the studio recordings is YOUR favorite.
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  15. walrus

    walrus Forum Resident

    Nashville, TN
    I think they're a 'second tier' prog band because they just never wrote "that" song. Like, I find GG infinitely fascinating, and have a bunch of their surround releases, and my god, they are the world's most perfect band for that treatment. But they're one of those bands where I could put on any of their first six or seven albums and get basically the same effect. Not that they're all the same record, but I'm generally not driven to any one over the other most of the time, in a way that, with Yes or Rush, sometimes you just need to hear "Starship Trooper" or "The Spirit Of Radio," because songs like that really stand out musically. Not only that, but as overplayed as "Roundabout" or "All Good People" or "Closer To The Heart" are, they were gateways for so many listeners.

    GG doesn't really have those songs, at least not in a way that resonated universally among the fan base or among a wider range of listeners. And that's okay! The music is still amazing, and I hear new things in it every time I listen. But it's what kept them from reaching the level of success of their contemporaries at the time, and I think partially what keeps them a 'second tier' band in conversation today.
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  16. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road

    it's so hard to pick a favourite ...
    gentle giant - although the sound quality isn't amazing, it doesn't have a weak track to my ears.
    acquiring the taste - is excellent, but i think the debut trumps it.
    three friends - is possibly the most coherent and intelligent concept album ever made
    octopus - another great album and the band start to really draw a wide sonic picture (probably not my favourite album but i guess i missed it's initial impact in the day)
    in a glass house - would be right up near my favourites and i sure hope they can find the tapes for a 5.1 with this
    power and the glory - this is a very different album, but i love it. perhaps it is the magnificent 5.1 but i find it enthralling all the way through
    free hand - probably my favourite. it's a little less adventurous in some ways. i admire the way they managed to make songs like just the same and free hand sound less complicated than they really were. i think on reflection is a sublime piece of vocal and music work (and i like the live alternative also)
    interview - it seems some folks don't like interview and i am not sure it works perfectly as a concept but the songs are brilliant. i lost my head is possibly my favourite song of theirs.
    missing piece - i actually liked this album. i didn't subscribe to the sellout notion i read about. i think they were making a different statement based on criticism ... but that is a subjective opinion based on observation far removed from the time it came out.
    giant for a day - has some good stuff, but seems lost and the band seems out of touch with themselves
    civilian - i really like this. if a different band had released it, i think it would be more widely recognised. i think giant fans would have found it to be too aor and none giant fans wouldn't have given it the time of day.

    so i will list them
    free hand
    power and the glory - interview
    octopus - three friends - in glass house
    gentle giant
    acquiring the taste
    civilian - missing piece
    giant for a day

    i think playing the fool is essential for live music fans. it would be nice to have good video of a concert from 72-76
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2018
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  17. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road

    on that level i find it hard to believe just the same didn't break that hoodoo for them
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  18. stereoptic

    stereoptic Anaglyphic GORT Staff

    Yep, take a look around there are quite a few Gentle Giant threads.

    I saw them many a time back in the day and had all of their albums, although starting with "inter-view" I started losing interest, although each of those albums forward have some solid tunes.
    segue and Scope J like this.
  19. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road

    oh ok, sorry
  20. walrus

    walrus Forum Resident

    Nashville, TN
    I can't imagine a planet on which that would've gotten significant radio airplay, even in the mid-70's. Also, after five years and a half-dozen albums, perhaps that ship had already sailed by Free Hand. (Cool track though)
  21. Scope J

    Scope J Forum Resident

  22. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road

  23. segue

    segue Forum Resident

    maybe a PFM thread?
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  24. gojikranz

    gojikranz Forum Resident

    love gentle giant. one of my top bands sure wish I could see em or even three friends but that seems to be done now.

    I think civilian is great if you can accept that it is it's own thing. missing piece kinda tries to straddle both worlds and I like a lot of it but not perfect. giant for a day I can enjoy it but overall get it last.

    power and the glory is probably my favorite but could change any given day.
  25. mx20

    mx20 Enthusiast

    Raleigh, NC
    I don't see the harm in another Giant thread, personally!

    Love 'em, with my two favorites being Interview and Acquiring The Taste.

    I do wonder what might have become of them if they'd had an accidental hit single... Maybe something off The Missing Piece or Giant For A Day? Could have been a novelty hit!

    I strongly dislike Giant For A Day & Civilian, I must say. The good parts of Missing Piece, though (a little more than half, imo) are quite good.

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