Steve Hillage

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After a stint with Gong as their trippy, hippy, new agey guitar guru of cosmically and extremely raga-esque trance rock and improv heaven, Steve Hillage went solo. He branched out to carry his own version of the Gong gospel of personal freedom via his special blend of cosmic brotherhood, Eastern religion, new age, pyramids, ley lines, crystals, and some ferocious jazz fusion and progressive rock guitar blended with space rock synths. Hillage reinterprets some well-known tunes by other artists like Donovan and George Harrison here as well as penning some of his more memorable sonic treats. His awesome riffing and speedy solos on his Fender Strat rival those of Hendrix and Frank Marino but go further compositionally via exotic scales from other cultures. Add in Todd Rundgren's engineering and production genius, his Utopians guesting, and several others like Don Cherry on brass and Tibetan trumpet along with a 15th century Hurdy Gurdy and you have a wild romp into eclectic rock. The 12-minute-long "Lunar Musick Suite" is the pinnacle moment of the release and "Om Nama Shivaya" comes in a close second for Hillage's most blissed-out trance rock. Both Gong and Hillage's solo career have brought such superb musical echoes and legends such as veteran space rockers, the Ozric Tentacles.

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