STEVE HACKETT / STEVE HOWE - GTR turns 35 today ... your thoughts?

  • Steve Hackett's and Steve Howe's band project GTR have released only one album in 1986. This self-titled album turns 35 today.

    This is our review (the 2015 reissue was reviewed):

    https://www.genesis-news.com/c…acon-2CD-review-s733.html


    What do you think about the GTR aklbum? Favorite tracks?


  • Difficult album for me. I don't like the voice a lot and most of the tracks are average at best. Surely not one of Steve's highlights.


    I do like Imagining, though.

  • I quite like it. Certainly, the arrangements and production could have been better, and the initial CD release sounded awful, far too strident and shrill. The re-issue improves matters a bit, but it's still a bit tiring.


    Best tracks: The single, When the heart....., The Hunter, Jekyll & Hyde, and the closing trio, Toe the line/Hackett to Bits/Imagining. The vocalist, Max Bacon, comes from somewhere around Cuddington, near Northwich, Cheshire, so not far from me. I had a friend back then who knew him. I believe he ended up as a pub landlord, but not before appearing on "New Faces" (Like X-factor for the 1980's) as a NEW act, and singing When the heart..........! What a laugh.

    Ian


    Works with chess - Not with life

  • I never heard the album but I went to see GTR perform in London. It was ok-ish, I think but pretty unmemorable.


    One thing I do remember was vocalist Max Bacon at the end of the gig acknowledging the applause and excitedly saying "GTR won't be a one-album wonder, we're going to carry on going for YEARS!" at which point I swear I saw the Steves grimace through their rictus grins.


    My next memory of Max B was his being an unsuccessful contestant in A Song For Europe, the UK's televised show deciding that year's entry for the Eurovision Song Contest. I didn't know about his New Faces appearance or that the show was even still going in the 80s. I hope his pub did ok.

    Abandon all reason

  • I should have given the full album a listen. It got some play on album rock stations in Washington, DC, where I was living at the time. What I heard sounded ok—neither great nor awful. I hate to admit it but JD Considine’s infamous 1 word, three letter review of the album turned me off from giving it the full listen it deserved.

  • After eagerly purchasing GTR upon its release and sitting down to my first listen, I was immediately reminded of my reaction to Asia.

    High expectations followed by great disappointment.


    Don’t get me wrong. I think there were some decent tunes.


    But to me this was like sitting down at a fancy restaurant, telling the waiter “surprise me,” eagerly awaiting a culinary delight and being served burgers and fries.

    I don’t mind burgers and fries.

    But not when I’m at a place renowned for its brilliant chefs.


    This was stadium pop performed by brilliant musicians, not playing up to their individual talents

  • As I mentioned, despite going to a GTR gig I was otherwise not especially interested in them. This thread prompted me to look them up. I know Wikipedia isn't necessarily a wholly reliable source of info but assuming it's largely accurate, the GTR page is fairly interesting and points to some misgivings that Hackett in particular had.

    Abandon all reason

  • I never heard the album but I went to see GTR perform in London. It was ok-ish, I think but pretty unmemorable.


    One thing I do remember was vocalist Max Bacon at the end of the gig acknowledging the applause and excitedly saying "GTR won't be a one-album wonder, we're going to carry on going for YEARS!" at which point I swear I saw the Steves grimace through their rictus grins.


    My next memory of Max B was his being an unsuccessful contestant in A Song For Europe, the UK's televised show deciding that year's entry for the Eurovision Song Contest. I didn't know about his New Faces appearance or that the show was even still going in the 80s. I hope his pub did ok.

    Re the "one album wonder" quote, he says a similar thing on the live album which comes with the reissue.


    I didn't know about the Song for Europe bid, but here's Max on the following weeks New Faces, so I guess he won the vote for the first appearance:


    Max Bacon (GTR) - when the heart rules the mind. - YouTube

    Ian


    Works with chess - Not with life

  • An OK album, not great and not terrible. I never liked the way "Please Don't Touch" (and the title of "Hackett to Pieces," for that matter) was recycled for "Hackett to Bits."


    My favorite song on the album, by a long shot, is "Imagining."


    One thing I find interesting is that Hackett seems to have originally come out of GTR with a rather low opinion of Howe, but the two would become good friends later on.

    The Seat Bunny!

  • One thing I find interesting is that Hackett seems to have originally come out of GTR with a rather low opinion of Howe, but the two would become good friends later on.

    As articles on the band have said, there seems to have been 1 or 2 people coming between them, so I guess it was "he said this about you" and so on.

    Ian


    Works with chess - Not with life

  • A review of the GTR album (now no longer available online) said something like this: Not long after GTR disbanded, Hackett was asked in an online chat to describe Howe's personality. His response was simply: VEGETARIAN.


    I've always wondered if this had some connection with the "vegetarian guitar" from GENESIS REVISITED...

    The Seat Bunny!

  • I can't remember the last time I played this album - definitely a number of years.


    Must dig it out over the next week and remind myself what it sounded like

    “Without music, life would be a mistake”

  • I remember playing it only once. So I do not really care about it. It is not that often that I listen to albums only once.

    my advanced copy arrived so I hope I will listen to it more than once ;)

    Will let you know what I think about it.