Out Of Mind Glass Cas­tle

Prog - - The Musical Box - CC

Up and down fourth record from Lon­don prog rock­ers.

If you’re new to Hats Off Gentle­men It’s Ad­e­quate, the Lon­don band dub them­selves “proggy, funky, de­fi­ant and some­times poignant” – oh, and they’re ap­proved by Steve Hackett. This just about en­cap­su­lates their fourth record Out Of Mind, although the funk nod is per­haps overegged – Sly & The Fam­ily Stone this ain’t. The mu­sic, guided by vo­cal­ist/ in­stru­men­tal­ist Mal­colm Gal­loway and bassist/key­boardist Mark Gat­land, is a stroll through cap-doffs to Pink Floyd and Mar­il­lion that un­der­pin ru­mi­na­tions on the lyri­cal theme of mem­ory. At best the al­bum is an im­pres­sive palette of colours, with De­fi­ance a spunky, key-driven romp and Maze a dreamy brush­stroke of broody riffs and synth swirls, while Kathryn Thomas’ flute work is a vi­tal in­jec­tion of piz­zaz. With lyrics point­ing to pi­o­neer­ing sci-fi writer Philip K Dick, as well as tunes cov­er­ing top­ics like de­men­tia, this is a cere­bral af­fair, but it de­rails a lit­tle on tracks like The Elec­tric Ant, which can feel limp with over­bear­ing vo­cals and soggy mu­sic. For­get about the lulls of pal­lid­ity, though, and Out Of Mind def­i­nitely has its mo­ments, although it re­mains to be seen if it’s one that will stick in the mem­ory.

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