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Hugh Hopper - Volume 6: Special Friends (SCD)

Genre: Prog rock
Release Date: 6th April 2015

Label: Gonzo
Catalogue Number: HST248CD
Price: $10.49
Available: In Stock


 
Hugh Hopper - Volume 6: Special Friends
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This is the sixth of a ten part series compiled by Michael King, a Canadian Hugh Hopper Scholar. He writes: “My first encounter with the music of Hugh Colin Hopper backdates to the summer of 1976. While visiting a friend I was intentional played a record titled Volume Two from a British rock group about whom I knew little, The Soft Machine. The experience was staggering and prompted a radical reappraisal for the conventions I had been conditioned to accept as ‘Progressive’. Once smitten I undertook to follow and purchase a spate of seriously inventive record albums that Hugh Hopper released and appeared on, namely; Hoppertunity Box, Rogue Element, Soft Heap, Cruel But Fair and Two Rainbows Daily. Throughout these works I found Hugh’s textural bass guitar by turns anchored and animated the music with ample good taste. Here was a rarefied musician who avoided overplaying his instrument in favour of approaches reflecting his personal musical Zen”.

Technically, by processing his bass guitar with fuzz box, flanger, wha-wha, octave

pedal effects, his use of tapes loops, and latterly computer programming, Hugh constructed multilayer soundscapes with great attention to detail. His creative template embraced aesthetics well beyond the orthodox roles assigned to the bass guitar and its practitioner. As example, Hugh cleverly adapted the time altering effects of the repetitive tapes loops he was creating with two tape recorders in the early sixties - to his bass guitar - by playing such repeating patterns in real time. Furthermore, minimalist mutations and modularity often characterize the rhythmic, harmonic, melodic foundations of Hugh’s musical compositions (many displaying melody lines of uncommon length). These aspects, alongside a brilliant capacity to freely improvise, (dynamically from a whisper to a roar) distinguish Hugh Hopper as a consummate musician of great standing, one who thrived in myriad musical settings”.

This ten part series is to compliment a heretofore large body of work (over sixty titles) by presenting previously unreleased concert and studio recordings, with the focus on Hugh’s compositions as performed by groups under his leadership. 


Tracks: 

For Alan

Sliding Dogs

Midnight Judo

Miniluv

Wanglo Saxon

Wanglo Variations

Improvisation

 



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