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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars At LAST I can hear through the murky recording!!!, 21 Mar 2007
By 
DSR (out beyond the sticks) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Fish Rising (Audio CD)
I must confess that it was "L" that brought me to the wonderful musical paths of Steve Hillage and it was a year or two before I added the original LP release of this album to my collection.

I found the recording on LP incredibly murky, dull and thick sounding and for years it got in the way of my enjoyment of the music. I avoided the original CD issue too for this reason.

I MUST say, however, that although it would be wrong and probably impossible without a complete re-mix to totally transform the recording, the re-mastering here has done its best to make as near to a silk purse as possible from the murky sludge and AT LAST I can hear what was going on!!! "Salmon Song," in particular, drew me in like it had never done before, even on my cheapo computer speakers and I was spellbound!

The bonus tracks are great too. I'd never bought the compilation LP "V" from the mid seventies, so to hear the re-mixed (by Steve) "Pentagrammaspin" was hugely enjoyable. Also, the "Power Trio" compilation track that makes up the last "extra" track (thanks Steve and friends for hanging on to these private tapes so that we can enjoy them).

Once again, I recommend this new CD wholeheartedly to any fans of Gong, Steve & Miquette themselves and also the "Canterbury" scene, which played such an important part in the evolution of these tracks.

P.S. A final HUGE thank you to the mastering engineer, who has resisted the current trend to overdo the volume and rob recordings of their natural dynamics (Coldplay & Keane anyone?), but instead has restored the clarity and body that is often missing in rushed, early CD transfers of 1970's material.
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34 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars King of the fishes!, 26 Jan 2007
By 
Dr. D. B. Sillars - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Fish Rising (Audio CD)
Another in the line of Virgin/EMI's most welcome re-issue series (we have had Peter Hammill, VDGG and Steve Hackett recently) sees Steve Hillage get his back catalogue remastered and repackaged. The first batch of four starts with "Fish Rising", recorded while Steve was still a member of Gong. Although later albums like "L" and "Motivation Radio" would be far more commercially successful, "Fish Rising" to many is his masterpiece. It's not difficult to see why. The album starts with the mighty "Solar Musick Suite". A lengthy, wonderfully developed piece where Dave Stewart offers up some of his best keyboard work ever. And superbly backed by the excellent Gong rhythm section of Mike Howlett and the late Pierre Moerlen. Lyrically Hillage was well known for his new age positivism, none better represented in this track with its richly oblique mystical references. But strangely within the context of the present world these songs come across as representing a refreshing spiritualism which is sadly lacking in today's mass consumer culture.

The stand-out on the album and which became a concert favourite is "The Salmon Song". Bearing one of Hillage's classic riffs, which he was so good at inventing, this is powerful and exciting stuff. Full of classic blistering guitar solos, which Hillage became so well known for. The other epic is "Afterglid" another beautifully executed piece which culminates in the ecstatic riffing of "The Golden Vibe".

"Fish Rising" is a superb first solo album from Hillage. In some ways the logical follow up to "Space Shanty" by his earlier band Khan. Actually some of the tracks on "Fish Rising" were meant for a second Khan album. This excellent remaster sounds clean and detailed. Nice work Paschal! Gone is the horrible murkiness of the original CD release. This recording now sounds alive and envigorating!

Hillage wasn't initially keen to have his back catalogue re-released having moved far, far away from this type of music, but once involved he actually embraced the project with much enthusiasm. To such an extent he remixed the bonus track "Pentagrammaspin", never before available on CD and found lost "power trio" performances, including "Aftaglid" added here featuring just Hillage/Howlett/Moerlen. The CD booklet has notes by archivist Mark Powell which includes new interviews with Hillage himself.

At long last Hillage's back catalogue is given the treatment it deserves. Hopefully a new generation will hear this original and inspirational musician in all his glory and "Fish Rising" is a superb place to start.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still cool after all these years, 28 Mar 2006
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This review is from: Fish Rising (Audio CD)
I had the pleasure and privilege of seeing Mr H play Birmingham Town Hall in the mid-70s. When I finally got round to buying this glorious album 30 years later it was like travelling back in time. What a fabulous guitarist. I realised when I heard it again that the final riff in "Aftaglid" had stayed in my head for all those years! If you've never experienced this guy's work, buy this album. Tune in, chill out and enjoy!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars They just dont make them like this anymore!, 30 July 2004
This review is from: Fish Rising (Audio CD)
Fish Rising was my first Hillage album -and together with Green, L, and Motivation Radio they stand tall in my collection to this day. Steve was / is such a fantastic guitarist - not because he can sound like a wasp tearing across the fretboard - but because of the scales he uses. On this album his fingers seem to dance or skip across the notes.
The classic Salmon Song is superb, Solar Musick Suite is an epic - check out the guitar as the song fades away - blissful ! Sometime it harks back to Gong eccentricity - the song Fish in particular. Lots of happy hippy riffs - such as the Golden Vibe -which will keep you whistling for hours - now if only I could make that my ring-tone!
All in all - a timeless classic from a master of the guitar. Buy it !
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Canterbury Classic, 15 Nov 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Fish Rising (Audio CD)
With Dave Stewart(from Hatfield,Egg,ect) on board as well as various cohorts from Gong,Hillage produced a gem of a record.Great instrumental work all round,but it never becomes too self indulgent.The music is of a very positive nature and is an album I can go back to again and again.
At this price what have you got to loose.Easily Hillage's best solo album.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Far out, 29 Dec 2009
This review is from: Fish Rising (Audio CD)
Rate this as one of the best albums ever made, it has to be heard to be believed. Steve hillage's guitar work is on top form here and what an excellent band he put together to make this album. If you like Psychedelic rock this ois a must have.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Slip Slidin' Away.........., 23 Oct 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Fish Rising (Audio CD)
THE hippy album by one of the UK's most under-rated and unacknowledged guitar greats. The opening track, "Solar Musick Suite" (sic) is a swirling, time shifting masterpiece that deserves only to be listened to in the dark. A truly spooky, gorgeous song. With help from ex-members of Gong and Dave Stewart (he of Bruford and "..And Barbara Gaskin" fame, Hillage recorded a tribute to the humble fish. With common references to the salmon, the fresh listener may think "What the hell is this?", but give it one play through and you'll be hooked (no pun intended!). Also, the track "Aftaglid" is what a surf song should be; no, not Beach Boy-style harmonies, but a giant, crashing and building slab of guitars and keyboards.
Turn on, tuna in and chill out to "Fish Rising"
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Rough Guide to Planet Earth for Fish, 24 Jan 2002
This review is from: Fish Rising (Audio CD)
Steve Hillage composed (along with friends) this exceptional album as a way of explaining to fish what it is to be human. Lacking a mutual language, he and his pals utilise the most direct form of sole to sole communication (music) and I have to say that even after listening to this album (off and on) for 25 years it still works at every level. This is Proper Music - intricate, involving, meditative and finally uplifting. Six stars!
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top draw psych-rock fom a true original., 4 Feb 2007
By 
Kevin O'Keefe (Yorkshire, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Fish Rising (Audio CD)
Not much to add to the Doc's good review except to say I echo his sentiments: probably among Hillage's finest and stands shoulder to shoulder alongside 'L', 'Green' and 'Live Herald'. The curious should buy without hesitation and for those with previous versions I would urge to buy also; the remaster (though not a quantum leap) is more detailed and the unreleased brand new bonus track is a an absolute doozy and slots comfortably in with the orginal track listing. Best of all it features oodles of Hillage's trademark liquid, hypnotic riffing. It's, like, totally far-out man! A unique sonic trip that never loses it's focus musically or atmospherically. Does it sound dated? Well anything that employs use of a bassoon could be accused of that but, like the best (dare I say it) prog it sounds impossible to pin down: this sounds simultaneously thirty years old and possibly many decades hence ('retro-futurist' anyone?).
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The only problem is...., 16 May 2007
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This review is from: Fish Rising (Audio CD)
I was very pleased with the re-master of this classic album, which i owned since it was released. You get so familiard with the music that you know every nuance of the piece. The clarity of the reissue is great, especially the synths which were much crisper, but the only downside was that it was almost too clear! Having got used to the somewaht murky vinyl, it was quite a shock to hear the clarity of the piece, and i guess it will take some getting used to!

But apart from that, I cant add much to waht has already been said, and yes, the bonus tracks are well worth it too.

Its a shame there isnt more of the original's artwork, and lyrics which were included in the album. However the write up in the CD is good.
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Fish Rising
Fish Rising by Steve Hillage (Audio CD - 1987)
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