Sunday 5 April 2015

Shadow of The Hierophant (Steve Hackett, 1975)

One of the best Genesis members' solo tracks, IMHO. Coming from Steve's first album, "Voyage of The Acolyte", this rather long piece of music also features Mike Rutherford, Phil Collins and stunning Sally Oldfield's vocals. Misty and sad, based on the unusual union of an acoustic verse and a fully symphonic chorus, "Shadow of The Hierophant" is full of surprises. The volume changes are the first feature the listener comes across, then he realizes how tricky and ingenious the architecture of this song is.

Hackett's debut album is full of sense of wonder.

Eleven minutes of spectacular, more or less fantasy sketches, suggesting valleys and heroes, pains and triumphs. More Genesis than Genesis themselves, this track goes through its different phases buiding up a winding crescendo. Even being a guitarist's brainchild, "Shadow of The Hierophant" looks like a full band's work - and somehow it actually is. That's why it shines on as one of the first and best steps of Steve Hackett's unpredictable and overwhelming solo career.

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