Gong - Shamal (1975)

Studio Album, released in 1976

From Progarchives.com;5 stars. "Shamal" is a GREAT Gong's album. The instruments are perfectly balanced to produce impressive jazzy progressive rock pieces. The omnipresent percussion (xylophone, vibraphone, marimba, glockenspiel and tubular bells) form magic, pleasant and charming melodies. The music is embellished by many flute, saxophone, violin and lead vocals parts. Steve Hillage provides some electric guitars on a few tracks. There are some good keyboards: piano, organ and moog. The overall music sounds a bit like the complex and instrumental work of Frank Zappa with Ruth Underwood in the 70's.
There is an impressive Canterburian wah-wah organ a la Caravan on "Chandra". "Bambooji" is very exotic, with its special flute, traditional string instrument and delicate percussions: with the desert wind at the end, it evokes the culture around the Sahara desert. "Cat in Clark's Shoes" has some Van Der Graaf Generator, Happy The Man and Darryl Way's Wolf influences. "Mandrake" is a beautiful instrumental piece made of charming and celestial percussions & flutes. The last track "Shamal" is more fusion oriented, sounding like a simplified Brand X of the 70's plus some urban & sustained sax notes: it contains quite less percussions.


Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Wingful of Eyes (6:20)
2. Chandra (7:18)
3. Bambooji (5:13)
4. Cat in Clark's Shoes (7:43)
5. Mandrake (5:04)
6. Shamal (9:00)

Total Time: 40:01

Line-up / Musicians

- Mike Howlett / bass, vocals
- Didier 'Bloom' Malherbe / Tenor & Soprano saxophones, flutes, Bamboo flutes, Gongs
- Mireille Bauer / marimba, Glockenspiel, xylophone, assorted percussions & Gongs
- Pierre Moerlen / drums, vibraphone, Tubular Bells
- Patrice Lemoine / pianos, organ, Mini-Moog synth
- Steve Hillage / guitars ("Bambooji" & "Wingful of Eyes")
- Miquette Giraudy / vocals ("Bambooji")
- Sandy Colley / vocals ("Shamal")
- Jorge Pinchevesky / violin ("Cat in Clark's Shoes", "Bambooji", "Shamal", "Chandra")

Releases information:

Virgin CDV2046


1 comment:

Unknown said...

Awesome, Thanks so much. This is by far my favorite album they did, a true gem. There is a tremendous amount of musical depth here.... highly recommended for anyone getting into prog/ fusion