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Seven - A Suite for Orchestra [CD]

Tony Banks, Banks Audio CD
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
Price: 4.75 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Seven - A Suite for Orchestra + Six Pieces For Orchestra + A Curious Feeling
Price For All Three: 22.73

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Product details

  • Orchestra: London Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Conductor: Mike Dixon
  • Composer: Tony Banks
  • Audio CD (29 Mar 2004)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Naxos
  • ASIN: B0001M0A4I
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 23,288 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
Listen  1. Seven - A Suite for Orchestra: Spring Tide10:14Album Only
Listen  2. Seven - A Suite for Orchestra: Black Down 9:46Album Only
Listen  3. Seven - A Suite for Orchestra: The Gateway 7:290.89  Buy MP3 
Listen  4. Seven - A Suite for Orchestra: The Ram 8:52Album Only
Listen  5. Seven - A Suite for Orchestra: Earthlight 4:430.89  Buy MP3 
Listen  6. Seven - A Suite for Orchestra: Neap Tide 4:570.89  Buy MP3 
Listen  7. Seven - A Suite for Orchestra: The Spirit of Gravity11:33Album Only

Product Description


Seven: A Suite for Orchestra marks both a departure and a homecoming for Tony Banks, best known as the keyboard player with Genesis. Since a brief sojourn in film music, notably with The Wicked Lady (1983), Banks has produced here his first orchestral work in 20 years. It may be his debut classical recording, but it also marks a return to the ambition behind the progressive rock of Genesis, where his classically inspired piano solos and intricate melodies elevated the band far above regular rock & roll. Now Banks has crafted a seven-movement symphonic suite, his lyrical piano entwined with the orchestra rather than showcased concerto-style.

The piece lies firmly within the pastoral English tradition of Elgar, Vaughan Williams and Gerald Finzi, the lush orchestration (by Simon Hale) often infused with melancholy and soaring with a haunted intensity. Classical purists may dismiss Seven as pseudo-film music--indeed, the suite's third movement, "The Gateway", was written as a potential film theme and is gorgeously bittersweet and uplifting somewhat in the manner of John Williams's finale to ET (1982)--but those who just enjoy melodic orchestral music will find much to savour. The road from prog rock to symphonic score is littered with pretentious disasters, but Banks has wisely learnt from his predecessors' mistakes to make perhaps the most convincing transition so far. --Gary S Dalkin

Product Description

I will ship by EMS or SAL items in stock in Japan. It is approximately 7-14days on delivery date. You wholeheartedly support customers as satisfactory. Thank you for you seeing it.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Awfully Pleasant 14 Jun 2009
By Nicholas Casley TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
During the late 1970s and early 1980s, I was heavily into Genesis, and the songs I found most inventive and imaginative tended to be those written by Tony Banks. `Me and Sarah Jane' from the `Abacab' album had a certain orchestral grandeur to it. I was therefore intrigued when I heard that Tony Banks had written a suite for orchestra.

And yet the orchestration has been done by Simon Hale. Why? For, it is the orchestration that adds character to the notes; a piece written by Vaughan Williams and orchestrated by him is profoundly different from a piece he has written and orchestrated by someone else. Banks writes in the sleevenotes, "I wanted to make sure that the pieces ended up being a true representation of what I had originally written, even though I know I was going to need the help of an orchestrator." I am surprised that Banks does not consider he has the experience to orchestrate the pieces himself, especially with the software that has been available since the 1980s.

On first hearing, I was disappointed by how twee the suite sounds, at the conservatism and traditionalism on offer. I was reminded of Miss Marple! Is this the music of the twenty-first century? Hardly; it could have been written one hundred years ago. Is Banks making a stake for film soundtrack commissions? But on further hearings, I grew more appreciative of the Englishness of the soundscape, which often mirrors a Home Counties pastorale. By the way, I found it easier to appreciate the pieces by not thinking of their titles; indeed, it would have been better, in my view, to have called the suite `Seven Orchestral Etudes'. They are at best a pleasant set, but I was never moved.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Work by a Superb Composer 13 May 2004
By Jerry
Format:Audio CD
The bridge between classical music and rock is littered with the wrecks of well-intentioned hybrid works that unfortunately end up somewhere in the middle ground between both genres. Often, orchestras will play “the music of . . .” rock acts such as the Rolling Stones, or rock artists themselves will try their hand at composing pieces for an orchestra. Too often the former ends up sounding like muzak and the latter ends up being largely arranged and orchestrated by others with dubious results. In the end, most fail to engage the listener musically.
Looking at this past history, it is a brave person who seeks to cross the path between these worlds. Seven: A Suite for Orchestra, though, stands out as a prime exception to the general rule. Composer Tony Banks is perhaps best known for his writing and keyboard playing with the progressive rock group Genesis over the last three decades. Seven is his first full orchestral album, and represents the best example of a rock artist crossing over into classical thus far. Generally, there are several reasons why this work succeeds. Banks’ compositions have always favored more complex musical structures that lend themselves to expansion with an orchestra, compared with normal pedestrian three-chord rock structures. Many of Banks’ previous compositions were laden with classical influences such as Rachmaninov and Ravel. Additionally, as Banks explains in the notes accompanying the album, he wrote and arranged the pieces himself and minimally used an orchestrator, Simon Hale. The pieces were written for an orchestra, and are not rock compositions later adapted by an independent arranger.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Faulty Expectations? 29 Aug 2007
By Q
Format:Audio CD
I can only imagine that it is my expectations that are at fault. I have loved Tony Banks' work over the years - especially 'Curious Feeling' - and I based my expectations upon what he has done so far - hardly an unreasonable basis. However, all the gorgeous chords and chord-changes, all the scintillating arpeggios and all that wonderful Banks "feeling" - these are mostly conspicuous by their absence. I am very sorry to say that although 'Seven' is pleasant and pastoral, it is, to my ears at least, bland.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars His finest hour! 28 Mar 2004
By Chris Pearson VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD
I've been an admirer of Banks since the early 70's when as a classical musician his piano introduction to 'Firth of Fifth' sparked my interest in prog rock.However, this CD is Banks at his best. His style has matured. Yes, the Genesis 'roots' and modulations are there, but also some extremely sensitive and well arranged orchestrations that release and enable the evocative melodies and lyrical themes to soar. There is evidence of Elgar, Finzi, Sibelius and Walton's influence here, plus the movie 'greats', particularly John Williams and Maurice Jarre. This is his finest work-it makes his other solo work,esp Wicked Lady, seem somewhat inconsequential. Buy this.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Full potential unleashed 11 May 2004
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I have long considered Tony Banks the key creative force in Genesis, and the man behind some of the most memorable elements of the classic 'prog rock' albums of (gulp) 30 years ago like Foxtrot, Nursery Cryme, and Selling England by the Pound - which by the way still sound pretty good if you like that sort of thing.
With 'Seven', he demonstrates the full range of his melodic gifts and abilities as an arranger. I don't know how the classical 'establishment' would take to this stuff, but if you like (for example) Elgar's Enigma variations, then chances are you would enjoy Seven. I was slightly surprised that that the keyboard elements are so low key, given his background, with the major themese being delivered by strings and woodwind (plus some brass), but the music is none the worse for that. If I had to make a criticism, it is that the seven pieces, while sharing a common style, lack any real unifying or repeating themes, and come across as a collection of separate works - which is, I believe, how they were written. Otherwise a real treat, and very reasonable priced into the bargain.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Interersting.
Hints of Genesis here and there and a very interesting piece of music. Bought for my husband and we have only listened to it once through. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Hazel
3.0 out of 5 stars ok
Have listened to this a couple of times but have not rushed to listen to it lately. sounds like a film score
Published 17 months ago by Claire Scutter
5.0 out of 5 stars Seven or is it Heaven
Here was a pleasantly surprising package from the talented writing of Mr Tony Banks,I was so surprised at the content of this CD and would not hesitate to recommend it to any... Read more
Published on 24 Jun 2012 by Seawolf
5.0 out of 5 stars Seven - Tony Banks
An excellent compilation of original very pleasing to listen to relaxing music from a person with a history of producing very different sound for a very different audience.
Published on 5 Jun 2012 by cavingbiker
3.0 out of 5 stars Pretty nice & pretty dull
Tony Banks wanted to make a nice classical sounding album with an orchestra. He had no real musical ideas to speak of, no strong melodies or anything. Read more
Published on 25 Nov 2009 by Unsmart
1.0 out of 5 stars Pretty but Weak
The reviewer who said that 'he's right up there with his musical mentors: Shostakovich, Mahler and Rachmaninov,' was obviously drunk,sniffing something he shouldn't, or was Tony... Read more
Published on 17 July 2009 by R. Millington
2.0 out of 5 stars No!
A long time Genesis fan, I really really wanted this to be good. But frankly, the reviewer that mentions this in the same breath as Vaughan Williams, Shostakovich and Samuel Barber... Read more
Published on 5 Aug 2006 by Jiminy
5.0 out of 5 stars Music true to your needs!
Amazon reviewers can get carried away with their enthusiasm for their favourite records. Often when listening to their recommendations you think, "Am I listening to the same piece... Read more
Published on 24 Jan 2006
5.0 out of 5 stars An absolute work of pure genius!
Outstanding! I was mesmerised for the whole 57 minutes and 39 seconds of this beautiful and heart wrenching album. Read more
Published on 16 Aug 2004 by Miss K. O'Donnell
5.0 out of 5 stars Anthony George Banks!
Do not care from what band this man formerly wrote for and was the driving force behind. If you're a classical music afficionado, then you'll love these suites from a contemporary... Read more
Published on 13 Jun 2004 by Paul S
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