Gentle Giant’s ‘The Missing Piece’: A Prog Rock Odyssey Remixed by Steven Wilson
Gentle Giant, the titans of progressive rock, are set to re-release their 1977 album ‘The Missing Piece’, now remixed by the acclaimed Steven Wilson. Scheduled for release on February 16, 2024, by Chrysalis Records, this album is a must-have for prog rock enthusiasts and collectors alike.
A Dive into the Experimental
‘The Missing Piece’ represents a pivotal moment in Gentle Giant’s career, a time when the musical landscape was being reshaped by punk, disco, and rap. Embracing these changes, the band ventured into new territories with this album. The first side is a kaleidoscope of genres, from the quirky pop of “Two Weeks in Spain” to the grandeur of the power ballad “I’m Turning Around”, the syncopated funk of “Who Do You Think You Are?”, and even a punky edge in “Betcha Thought We Couldn’t Do It.” The album also revisits their R&B roots with “Mountain Time”, a nod to their Simon Dupree days.
Prog Rock Mastery on Side Two
The second side of the album sees Gentle Giant returning to their progressive rock mastery. Tracks like the baroque “As Old As You’re Young” and the elegiac “Memories of Old Days” showcase intricate compositions and heartfelt vocals from Derek Shulman. The album culminates with “Winning” and “For Nobody”, both exemplifying the band’s ability to weave complex, driving riffs with apparent ease.
Steven Wilson’s Magic Touch
Steven Wilson, known for his exceptional work in music production, brings his expertise to this remix. The album will be available in Dolby Atmos, Stereo, and 5.1 surround sound formats. The digipak CD/Blu-ray version includes an instrumental mix, the original 1977 stereo mix, and videos for each track. All remixes, except the Atmos version, feature a bonus track – a previously unreleased outtake of “Winning.”
Formats and Availability
The Steven Wilson remix of ‘The Missing Piece’ will be available on CD, 5.1 Blu-Ray, and 180g vinyl. This release is not just a revisit but a reimagining of a classic, offering a fresh perspective on an album that remains a topic of debate among fans for its diversity and humor.
The Line-Up Behind the Genius
The album features the talents of Derek Shulman on lead vocals, Kerry Minnear on keyboards and vocals, Ray Shulman on bass guitar and 12-string guitar, Gary Green on electric and acoustic guitars, and John “Pugwash” Weathers on drums and percussion. This ensemble of musicians brought to life the eclectic and intricate sounds that define ‘The Missing Piece’.
Track Listing – A Journey Through Styles
The album’s track listing is a journey through various styles and moods:
Two Weeks in Spain 3:04
I’m Turning Around 3:58
Betcha Thought We Couldn’t Do It 2:16
Who Do You Think You Are? 3:37
Mountain Time 3:21
As Old As You’re Young 4:21
Memories Of Old Days 7:22
For Nobody 4:09
Winning (Outtake) 3:31 (Bonus Track)
A Tribute to Prog Rock’s Rich History
‘The Missing Piece’, in its new avatar, is not just an album; it’s a tribute to the rich history of progressive rock. It showcases Gentle Giant’s fearless approach to music-making and their ability to stay relevant in a constantly evolving musical landscape. With Steven Wilson’s remix, this album is poised to capture the hearts of a new generation while rekindling the love of long-time fans.
Pre-order now and prepare to immerse yourself in a prog rock experience that is both nostalgic and refreshingly new.
Phil Aston | Now Spinning Magazine