Cold Harbour Lane : Jeremy Gilien

Reviewlet Larry Pennisi [USA]

This has always been one of my favorites from Matthew Fisherís Iíll Be There album of 1974. It was recorded and produced in Italy and released on RCA Records with Matthew poised as a ďsomnambulist zombie,Ē according to one journalist, on the front cover's mock crucifixion scene. Jeremy commences this interpretation with a very Left Banke-like preface. It features a piano and organ entrance that upon first hearing sounds remarkably like harpsichord samples. Hints of a guitar lurk carefully beneath the surface if I am hearing correctly. Itís then propelled by a bouncy pop feel that eschews Fisherís original more dire, Lennonesque, echo-drenched sound-wash.

Jeremyís vocal features that same, warm quality that we have come to know and love from his solo CDs such as Town and Country. Faithful to the original melody, save for a few minor melodic alterations and enunciation stretches to fit the morphed time signature, the initial and prevailing effect is quite pleasing. The use of Procol Harumesque suspended-fourth-to-major-triads imbues the track with a baroque quality that the original did not possess. Gently strummed acoustic guitar is mixed judiciously beneath the keyboard overlays. A wonderful Gentle Giant-like bridge in 11/8 time transitions nicely into the final verse. This was very unexpected and a most welcome addition. The track concludes with a reprise of the introductory section with a few twists and turns in the fabric.

The absolute angst of the Iíll Be There album can be compartmentalized in the lyrics to the song. Abandonment, dejection, and a perfunctory loss of direction mixed with a dreary hopelessness seems to be the predominant theme as it is with a good deal of the subject matter on the first two Fisher outings.

It seemed so easy those few months ago, when I had everything to gain ... well I thought I'd escaped but I left it far too late So I think I'll go back to Cold Harbour Lane ...

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