Product Search:
 
Currency:
Currency conversion & VAT information...
View Cart
Visit Our Facebook Page
Bargain Basement New & Recent Releases Rarities Special Offers Join Our Mailing List

MAGNUS, NICK - INHALING GREEN (2020 REMASTER/2 BT/GATE-FOLD CARD)

Product Format: CCCD               

Price: £9.99 (exc) £11.99 (inc)

Related Artist Profiles: Nick Magnus

Qty:

Long overdue and thoroughly deserved makeover of Symphonic Prog/Synth classic with 2 Bonus Tunes & New Art on a New Mini LP Style Gatefold Sleeve!

* Please hover your mouse / pointer over the sleeve image above to view another packaging image *

Having served his musical apprenticeship in the 70’s with the Symphonic rockers The ENID, Nick Magnus became Steve Hackett’s keyboard player during the guitarist’s rise to fame as a solo artist, following his departure from GENESIS. Since the mid 90’s Nick has released a string of superbly crafted solo albums, one of which is ‘Inhaling Green’. Originally issued in 1999, this timeless masterpiece was Nick’s second album and it has now been given a long overdue and thoroughly well deserved makeover. Virtually 100% instrumental, this album takes the listener on a course across a wide musical spectrum. Always engaging and truly melodic, it touches on several genres: Progressive, Jazz-Rock, Symphonic Thematic music and so much more besides.

Musically, ‘Inhaling Green’ will appeal to fans of artists like: STEVE HACKETT or VANGELIS and bands such as GENESIS, YES, KING CRIMSON and the MOODY BLUES – It’s classy, heartfelt music from a multi-talented keyboards craftsman with an incredible skill for both arranging and production! This is inspired instrumental Synth and Symphonic Prog-Rock music all rolled up into one epic film theme styled album that is as wide ranging in its scope as it is in its variation – one of THE finest keyboard based albums you’ll have the pleasure of listening to …that’s why it warrants this re-issue.

‘Inhaling Green’ has all the great instrumental elements you could wish for in an album of this type, and much more besides – Often it is neo-classical symphonic with grandiose majestic themes multi-layered in lavish keyboard flourishes. There’s a commercial edge to the catchy, tune-laden rhythmic cut: ‘Cantus’, covering an area once occupied by ENIGMA, then enters Rock territory with Magnus’s anthemic cover of George Martin’s ‘Theme One’, a massive sounding late 60’s track made famous by VAN DER GRAAF GENERATOR - Magnus makes this his own with some very special touches!

The keyboard sounds come in many guises - Mellotron, Moog, Hammond organ, piano, string-synth and more, but the album also boasts some of the finest melodic soaring electric guitar work around, courtesy of Geoff Whitehorn (CRAWLER / RAINBOW / PROCOL HARUM)! There’s also some beautifully tasteful flute parts courtesy of Steve Hackett's brother John and as tight a rhythm section as you'll get, which is amazingly all coming courtesy of Nick Magnus himself!

Full Track-by-Track Review…
The set opens with: 'Velociraptor', a blistering, band style, rock fusion track where Hackett-like guitars, organs and synths blast holes in your speakers over a storm force electronic rhythm section.

Next comes the stunning: 'Free The Spirit' and it has an exotic ethereal intro – the type of sound that immediately brings 'goose bumps' to the whole body as the first waves of Mellotron roll in under a striking flute/synth combination melody line shared between Nick and Steve Hackett’s brother John. As the track literally soars through a whole host of melodic themes and utterly amazing chord changes, the climaxes are given the full works with choral and string synths working through a bed of Mellotron textures - wow, what a beautiful track that sounds like something that might have been written for an instrumental section in a 70's 'One For The Vine' style GENESIS / Hackett album cut!

'The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea' is a similarly styled track with a piano lead line flowing over a sea of symphonic synth textures, with drums tightening the rhythmic/sequencer based end. Lush melodies form and envelop the piece in an exotic atmosphere, with Nick's high-class musicianship and production skills shining through and bringing out the best in what is a beautifully written piece of music. Mellotrons (I guess it's samples!) again weave in and out of the mix, but keep a fairly low profile, allowing the other synthesizers to work the main theme and take control of the heart of the piece.

Then in blasts: 'Cantus (On The Breath of God)' with a driving sequencer riff, closely followed by synth rhythms that quickly forms into an ENIGMA influenced track with the style of highly infectious beats that used to drive the European music scene crazy - A contender for a single release without any doubt, and it has THE most incredible production with synths jabbing in and around the beautiful male/female "Gregorian" choir arrangement - a must for anyone into ENIGMA (in fact this will drive fans of any Michael Cretu music wild with excitement!!) and perhaps there's a bit in there to for the ADIEMUS (remember them?) crowd too. Co-written with the late great Duncan Browne, this track is just BRILLIANT!

'Conquistador' flows straight into VANGELIS territory with a supremely gorgeous theme that equals anything the Greek master has produced for many a year, with full flowing synths and massed (electronic) choirs swelling the huge anthemic choruses in true epic movie score style fashion.

'Dixon Hill' is something very different as it has a big band feel done in synth style - a funky little number with a quirky fusion based melody line, where the electric piano initially takes the lead, eventually giving way to really full sounding synth saxes and other cloned brass sounds, bringing 70's brass rockers CHICAGO to mind with a short 'middle eight' and an end sequence that sounds like one of those whistling synth melodies that ISAO TOMITA made famous on his reworkings of classical favourites.

'Veil Of Sighs' is simply beautiful - a track with just a hint of 'Scarborough Fair' about it, featuring the second appearance of John Hackett's wonderfully evocative flute work. It's unashamedly romantic, symphonic and neo-classical and makes me think of something between Steve Hackett's early solo albums and Thijs Van Leer's (of Focus) solo work. Call it what you like; it is a masterpiece of haunting, heart-warming instrumental music, with the flute carrying the main melody line, backed by masses of keyboards that swell up in grandiose fashion for the crescendos.

'Theme One’ is a piece written by BEATLES producer George Martin for the opening of BBC Radio One many moons ago. The track was originally made famous by 70’s ‘art-rock’ band: VAN DRE GRAAF GENERATOR, and here it gets a dusting down and served up as the penultimate track (on the original release of ‘Inhaling Green’) - a modernised, slightly more up-tempo cover of the piece that introduced Radio 1 to the masses back in the 60's.
A pulsing rhythmic force runs through the cut and the synth lead has a similar feel to that of EUROPE's 'Final Countdown'. It also possibly feels like something an artist like Mike Oldfield might have done, had he come up with the idea first! Nick's lively rendition of this classic slice of 60's pop history is striking and instantly enjoyable, giving a brand new image to a piece of music that has already proved to have mass appeal qualities.

The epic sixteen-minute title cut: 'Inhaling Green' is a work of utter genius - a complete progressive/electronic crossover that is a perfect closing sequence to bring such an album to a magnificent climax. This piece can only be described as a “sci-fi movie for the ears” that comes in 3 episodes, the first of which opens in mystical fashion with the beautifully ethereal: 'Anatomy Of The Mind', where a haunting electronic generated boys choir performs a 'wordless' vocal theme, sounding like something written for a film like: 'Titanic' or 'Edward Scissors Hands'.
It's eerie, yet beautiful, with choral textures and sweeping synth strings swelling up through the evocative main theme and stirring your emotions to breaking point.
This cross-fades peacefully into the sensational 2nd part: 'Stripping Of The Flesh', which offers a different angle to a familiar theme – ENIGMA style rhythms drive the passage on as female voice and synth melodies form the backdrop for a piece set in the future, with two robotic electronic voices performing a narrative as the music takes you through the mind expanding landscape. A thrilling, soaring electric guitar solo comes in towards the end of this passage as do several creative electronic effects, all making for a wonderfully majestic atmospheric environment.
That incredible track (and the main album) ends as the piece moves into: 'Weighing Of The Souls', the 3rd and final movement on the title track, starting out in weird and wonderful space territory with sound samples and odd effects that are strange but extremely effective. Then, in comes the ghost of GENESIS past - Steve Hackett in the guise of Geoff Whitehorn, with his guitar on fire, searing and driving headlong through huge wedges of keyboard chords, creating several dramatic climaxes along the way, with massed synths and powered-up percussion flying high in the mix. Here, the track sounds like some long lost GENESIS epic, a bit like: ‘Firth Of Fifth’ as it builds towards it's finale, then cross fades back to reprise the opening sequence, where the sound of the robotic voices blends with Mellotrons and gorgeous heavenly chorals to end this magnificent "movie for the ears" in dream-like fashion - Sixteen minutes of classic, dynamic, musical fantasy splendour!

The first of the 2 Bonus Tracks on ‘Inhaling Green [2020]’ is a re-work of: ‘Night Of The Condor’, a firm favourite from Nick’s very first album: ‘Straight On ‘Till Morning’. It’s has an airy, thoroughly beautiful theme driven by a haunting piano melody, merged with multi-layered seas of synth-strings and choral effects and in the second half a soaring electric guitar solo rolls in. With the added driving power of Nick’s own rhythm section behind it, he has given the piece fantastic new 2020 production values to replace the original 1999 effort - with better sounds chosen for the melody, and enhanced by the application of new techniques learned over the last two decades. The track just flows perfectly over into the feel of ‘Inhaling Green’, snugly fitting into the overall style of the main album with the utmost of ease. VANGELIS would be proud of this one!

The 2nd of the Bonus Tracks is the Previously Unreleased: ‘Lord Percy's Folly’, a recently recorded four-minute sister piece to the track: 'Convivium' on Nick's 2020 album: ‘Catharsis’. Medieval in character, it is a weird but wonderful hybrid of medieval madrigal and Baroque produced on synthesizers and fitting the 'theme instrumentals' vibe of the original album.

So, there is it, a wonderful new sound and look to one of my all-time favourite albums … this is as good as it gets :-)

Also available by NICK MAGNUS …
CATHARSIS (2019 6th Album ft. Steve Hackett & more / Ltd CD+DVD Media-Book) CDMB – Stock # 2146247
CHILDREN OF ANOTHER GOD (2010 4th Prog Album / Digi-Pak / 20-Page Booklet) CD – Stock # 1291538
HEXAMERON (2004 3rd Prog Album featuring Steve Hackett) CD – Stock # 653675
N’MONIX (2014 5th Prog Album featuring Steve Hackett / Digi-Pak) CD – Stock # 1674070

‘Inhaling Green [2020]’ is released on 25th September 2020.


NICK MAGNUS: INHALING GREEN Track List:

01. Velociraptor (4:12)
02. Free The Spirit (5:42)
03. The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea (6:00)
04. Cantus [feat. Clare Brigstocke] (5:08)
05. Conquistador (4:33)
06. Dixon Hill (3:17)
07. Veil Of Sighs (4:07)
08. Theme One (3:51)
09. Inhaling Green (16:20)
i. Anatomy Of The Mind
ii. Stripping Of The Flesh
iii. Weighing Of The Souls
10. Flight Of The Condor (4:03) * Bonus Track *
11. Lord Percy's Folly (4:03) * Previously Unreleased Bonus Track *

TPT - 61:30