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Steve Hillage - Live Herald (1979)

Artista: Steve Hillage
Álbum: Live Herald
Año: 1979
Género: Escena Canterbury / Ambient / Space rock
Duración: 64:06
Nacionalidad: Inglaterra

Lista de Temas:
1. Salmon Song
2. The Dervish Riff
3. Castle In The Crowd / Hurdy Gurdy Man
4. Light In The Sky
5. Searching For The Spark
6. Electrick Gypsies
7. Radiom / Lunar Music Suite / Meditation Of The Dra
8. It's All Too Much / The Golden Vibe

- Steve Hillage / guitar, lead vocals, synthesizers
- Andy Anderson / drums (4-8)
- Colin Bass / bass (1-2-3-7)
- Joe Blocker / drums, backing vocals (5-6)
- Christian Boulé / guitars (1 to 4, 7-8)
- Basil Brooks / synthesizers, flute, sequencers(1-2-3-7)
- Clive Bunker / drums (1-2-3-7)
- Miquette Giraudy / synthesizers, sequencers, vocals, bells
- Phil Hodge / keyboards (1-2-3-7)
- John McKenzie / bass, backing vocals (4-8)
- Curtis Robertson / bass (5-6)

Empezamos la mañana del lunes con otro aporte de nuestro amigazo Lino, otro del señor Hillage, ustedes lo pidieron, Lino se los trajo. Imagino que se lo van a agradecer, al menos los que querían más discos de Hillage.
Un álbum en directo puro haciendo un profundo rock con buenos ambientes pero también con dinámicos momentos con influencias de Canterbury, con el espíritu elevado por la fina clase del guitarrista, un registro que lamentablemente fue tomado en cuatro conciertos diferentes, perdiendo quizás el "flujo" natural de un concierto, pero no deja de ser muy interesante, eso como poco.
Quien ya conoce a este músico de rock espacial y quiera conseguir algunos temas muy agradables aunque no sean de un mismo concierto, este disco les viene justo.
Impresionantes solos de guitarra pueblan el disco, sintetizadores burbujeantes al mejor estilo Gong. Si hay una música bien jipi que uno pueda recomendar, yo diría que esta es perfecta.
Y a continuación algunos comentarios en inglés del disco, si están con dudas de llevárselo, léanlos.

One of these unknown, but essential live albums from the prog rock scene.
Steve Hillage was a part of the Canterbury Scene and the former guitarist in Gong, a weirdo space rock outfit and the pretty superb Khan. This live album is full of spaced out jazz improvisations in addition to some pretty hard rock and symphonic prog. But all music is very melodic too. The music is guitar driven (this being Steve Hillage's instrument.....shock !) with some moogs thrown in. The music is very good and rapidly imprison the listener into Steve Hillage's world. I really love this album and recommend it to everyone. This album being a hybrid between all prog rock styles; it is a very good prog rock beginners album. The sound is good too so this is a must-have.
Torodd Fuglesteg

After you've soaked in Hillage's main studio albums, and love them and know what they're all about, get Live Herald and prepare to die. I'll be 'blunt' (haha) -- this is some of the most stoned, spaced out, mind gratifying music I've ever heard in my life. Basically you get two main ingredients: endless waves of swishing synthesizers flying around your speakers like UFOs invading the planet, and the most heaven-storming psychedelic guitar solos ever recorded. Hillage's guitar philosophy isn't one of "let's play intricate chords, and never repeat myself, and try to impress everybody with how well-versed a player I am..." He doesn't care! He's all about heaping on ridiculous amounts of echos and phasers and flangers, then ripping his fretboard to pieces over and over and over again! So basically, he's my kind of guy. You need your Holdsworths, but you also most definitely need your Hillages. The recording quality is great -- you won't even remember you're listening to a live album, until the crowd explodes after each song -- and every track is equally amazing (you've never heard "Hurdy Gurdy Man" like this). Go try "Searching for the Spark" on for size. Final word: lovers of music from the Gong tip of the equation, you will eventually come to worship this album as your holy grail.

One of my favorite albums of all time; Hillage is stupendous in these live recordings, and the solo at the end of Hurdy Gurdy Man is guaranteed to slam you into the wall & melt you into the carpet at the same time (apprentice wanabees Vai & Satriani - take note - this is how fast, fluid playing should be done!). The whole album laced with every synth effect possible in the late '70s, yet by no means a cold album - turn down the lights, turn up the HiFi, and let Steve show you the way.... Um... I quite like this album.... a bit....
Jim Garten

Originally released in 1978 as a double LP, "Live Herald" is now available as a single CD albeit without the additional studio songs. The album was recorded at the peak of Hillage's popularity (although peak might be too strong a word!) at a variety of gigs during 1977 and 1978, in and around the London (UK) area. The songs are primarily taken from Hillage's first album "Fish rising", "L" (which appears virtually in full) and "Motivation radio".
The sound quality is superb throughout, Hillage's performance adding a slightly harder edge to many of the tracks. Steve's distinctive guitar work never sounded better, supported all the while by symphonic sounding string synth tones. For me, there are two tracks which make this album essential. Both are cover versions, which Hillage takes and completely transforms. Donovan's "Hurdy Gurdy man" becomes a guitar based anthem, faithful in melody to the original, but sounding completely different. The song is in two parts, the latter half being "Hurdy Gurdy glissando", a freeform instrumental interpretation of the main tune.
"It's all too much" is a cover of a relatively obscure George Harrison song. Once again, it take the form of an anthem of sorts, providing a wonderful climax to the set. "The golden vibe" from "Fish rising" is appended to the song to provide the climactic conclusion required.
The odd Gong melody such as "Castle in the clouds" is thrown in, but Hillage appears intent on ensuring that it is his personal identity which is foremost here. Other highlights include an eleven minute sprint through the Hawkwind like "Searching for the spark" and a 15 minute three part medley, the centrepiece of which is "Lunar music suite", again from "L".
Even if you have the original albums; no, make that especially if you have the original albums, this is a highly recommended addition to your Hillage collection. Arguably, this album represents his finest hour.
Bob McBeath

Not long ago I saw Steve Hillage on the stage (reunited with Daevid Allen) and something grew in me to get into this album more recently. I must admit I haven't kept an eye on his solo stuff in the 70s, don't no why really. Better late than never. 'Live Herald' is a compilation of recordings from 1977/78. Probably for one or two it's a handicap that they are coming from four different performances, which means you cannot enjoy a whole concert in one go. Never mind! Well - here we have a convincing blend of space and jazz rock. There are a lot of winsome moments on the album - the variety, the spacey synthesizer goodies, Steve's brilliant technical skills where he nearly reaches the border to insanity.
Compared to 'Live at Deeply Vale Festival 78' for example the sound quality is very good (due to the remix). The firsts tracks feature ex-Jethro Tull drummer Clive Bunker. Powerful rhythm work indeed. On Salmon Song Miquette Giraudy complements Steve as usual with some quirky vocal and sequencer acrobatics. The Dervish Riff follows, a (if not THE) highlight. What a playful and tricky jazz rock performance ... on top of it decorated with twittering synths ... gliding into Donovan's Hurdy Gurdy Man where Bunker seemingly has problems to follow Steve's incredible speed - but he's barely able to turn the corner at the end. Next two songs have been recorded one year later, now with Andy Anderson behind the drums.
Light In The Sky is basically played with a more straightforward rocking behaviour ... as well as strange contrasting impressions though. Miquette offers some extraterrestial vocal contributions. Searching For The Spark follows in a significant driving Gong vein. This one is very enjoyable too - spiked with a bunch of synthesizer/sequenzer goodies plus echoed vocals and fantastic corresponding jazzy and glissando guitar. The Radiom/Lunar Music Suite/Meditation Of The Dragon suite should be noted too - provided with a symphonic touch and many breaks and turns, clearly contrasting with the grooving behaviour of the other songs. The last third is dominated by Steve's melancholic guitar with delay effect which is heading a compelling cosmic part.
Not all songs are convincing me ... however the 2007 Virgin reissue includes one new bonus - Solar Musick Suite - another recording from the Rainbow Theatre in 1977 featuring Clive Bunker. And yes - surprisingly this is a great benefit - if not the (new) highlight - including some wonderful jamming moments. It all begins rather innocent but evolves to a fantastic playful event. Oh, lucky you, who could be there to enjoy this live! And this finally makes it easy to honour 'Live Herald' with the label excellent addition.
Uwe Zickel

I need to make something clear: I am in love of Genesis and Steve Hillage. In that order. I don't care what others reviewers are saying. This Live record is a MUST in any prog music collection.
I really think that if you look "underrated" on Wikipedia there will be a post on Steve Hillage, He is adventurous with his guitar playing and the phrasing is unique.
What happened to him? Where is He now? The whole collection of his CD's are on heavy rotation at home. And this one is the crown in the group.
A must for any fan of Vai, Satriani, Bonamassa to learn from the master.

Great live document, any fans of Hillage studio albums must own this. Gives a new lease of life to the already brilliant studio versions and good track selection as well. Good point to start also if you're a potential fan but not sure what to get first.
Julian Vidal

One of these unknown, but essential live albums from the prog rock scene. Steve Hillage was a part of the Canterbury Scene and the former guitarist in Gong, a weirdo space rock outfit and the pretty superb Khan. This live album is full of spaced out jazz improvisations in addition to some pretty hard rock and symphonic prog. But all music is very melodic too. The music is guitar driven (this being Steve Hillage's instrument.....shock !) with some moogs thrown in. The music is very good and rapidly imprison the listener into Steve Hillage's world. I really love this album and recommend it to everyone. This album being a hybrid between all prog rock styles; it is a very good prog rock beginners album. The sound is good too so this is a must-have.

Great live recording that faithfully delivers the power of Steve Hillage during his Post Gong peak. The record could be a slightly better pressing but I would certainly get the cd. Do a bong crank it up and you'll be there at the front of the audience enjoying one of rocks true originals. I was lucky enough to see Steve Hillage a few times around this period and he always delivered great great set. The best moment of which there are many is the salmon song which explodes like no other Hillage number right from bar 16. The only dull moment on the record is 1988 Activator and its true to say the studio material is not of the very high standard of the rest of the work presented here. Steve Hillage was ardently a live performer and so its no surprise that this LP rocks its soaks off. A must for all Hillage and gong fans and well worth investing in for the vast majority of prog fans. Strictly speaking not prog but acid rock but really who gives a dam when it great its great what ever the label you attach to it. Only the studio material lets this Dbl lp set down otherwise it diserves a five.

Steve Hillage is a great guitar player - this stands above any discussion of his work. As an associate of the Canterbury Scene and a member of Gong, Hillage wrote his name at the annals of prog rock and earned some recognition, but far below than his great talents. On "Live Herald", he shows us his skills as a singer, songwriter and instrumentist, leading three different bands along six different concerts recorded in 1977/1978. The Virgin CD reissue omits the studio tracks which enhanced this live album, but Hillage fans can find this material as bonus tracks on "Open". About "Live Herald", I can say that it is a very pleasant live album, full of guitar pyrotechnics setted against a backdrop of excellent musicians, all in a very good recording. Highlights: "The Dervish Riff", "Castle in the Clouds/Hurdy gurdy Man" (yes, the Donovan classic!), "Electrick Gypsies" "Radiom/Lunar Music Suite/Meditation of the Dragon" (which features our hero playing a fantastic riff at the introduction) and "It's All too Much/The Golden Vibe" (the first is a Beatles song, and as usually happens, it is far better than the original). Miquette Giraudy, from Gong, is featured here as synthesist and singer, also playing the infamous "glissando guitar" invented by Daevid Allen. Virgin should re-release this album as 2-CD set, restating the studio tracks and offering bonus live material. If you are a Canterbury or Gong fan, this album must be in your collection.
Marcello B. Zapelini

Esto es para que empiecen bien la semana. Espero que lo disfruten...


  1. Download: (Flac + CUE + Log + Scans)

  2. Excelente, uno de mis guitarristas preferidos, saludos, buena semana !


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