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Gong: Angel's Egg (Radio Gnome Invisible, Vol. 2)

Album Notes

In retrospect, it's hard to believe both FLYING TEAPOT and its successor ANGELS EGG were released within months of each other in 1973. Each is an elaborate, distinct musical statement. ANGEL'S EGG is the second installment in Gong's legendary "Radio Gnome Trilogy," and it expands upon the ground broken by TEAPOT admirably. Though the band was still pursuing their spacy art-rock direction, the sound here became simultaneously jazzier and more ethereal. Didier Malherbe's sax and flute took a more active role, as did Steve Hillage's elaborate guitar textures.

An important personnel shift had also occured with the arrival of drummer Pierre Moerlen, mallet percussionist Mirielle Bauer and bassist Mike Howlett. These three were very much of the fusion school. After singer/songwriter Daevid Allen's departure, they would turn Gong into a full-fledged fusion outfit, but with Allen's whimsical songcraft still the defining factor, they simply add a more sophisticated instrumental edge. ANGEL'S EGG is a bit more sophisticated than TEAPOT, but an equal masterpiece.


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