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Gulliver - 1979 Ridin' The Wind




ARTIST: Gulliver
ALBUM: Ridin' The Wind
LABEL: CBS
SERIAL: JC 35767
YEAR: 1979

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: David Carron - vocals, guitars, bells/chimes * John Weider - vocals, guitars * Dana Buck - bass, vocals * David Buck - drums, vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 Miracle Tonight * 02 Lovin' A Dream * 03 The Wonder Of It All * 04 Bright Lights * 05 Ridin' The Wind * 06 Danger In The Night * 07 Heartbreaks And Heartaches * 08 Wild Bells * 09 No Lovin' Without You * 10 See It Comin'


Background
Gulliver were a short-lived band from Los Angeles, who saw action during 1978, and into the 1979 year. Originally called Galaxy, they became Gulliver, and were formed around the talented pairing of multi-instrumentalists David Carron and John Weider (the latter was previously with The Animals), plus the identical twins of Dana and David Buck. Gulliver certainly had a lot going for them musically. The music was a collection of soft-pomp/symphonic arrangements, with 'Wonder Of It All' being their one and only single. The band were signed to CBS, well.. CBS subsidiary Offshoot Records to be exact.


The Songs
Musically, Gulliver presented the world with an intriguing and engaging style of rock music. In parts, they dabble in symphonic and light pomp styles frequented by the likes of Face Dancer and MPG. On the other hand, they pick up their acoustic guitars and warble away in true America like fashion. Both Carron and Weider provide ample searing lead guitar parts throughout, the contrast is great! Listen to the hard rockin' 'Danger In The Night' as an example of how they merge both styles together. The America comparison is best heard on the soundalike 'No Loving Without You'. Elsewhere, the high-pitched vocals on the delightful 'Heartbreaks And Heartaches' gives us a new take on the term 'soaring'. The single 'Wonder Of It All' is a punchy effort, but I doubt that this was the tune to sell the band to the radio audience. The pomp-like approach of 'Wild Bells' (complete with bells I might add!) has the back-end power we last heard on Face Dancer's material. All good stuff.


In Summary
The band had a short life span due to the reluctance of Carron to further his ambitions with rock music, he subsequently disbanded Gulliver in Aug 1979, though there was a rumour that he was also working on material for a second Gulliver album which never made it out of his head. Originally from Massachusetts, Carron came out to L.A as so many do, in search of musical fame and fortune. After his L.A stint, he and his wife returned to Massachusetts for a more simpler lifestyle. Carron unfortunately died in 1984 of a brain aneurysm. However, this album is a hard-earned search through the archives, and is well worth the hunt through second-hand stores or on Ebay. For fans of 70's hard rock, Gulliver mix up some searing guitar-work on their heavier moments, and vocal harmonies a la Firefall and 80's era America on their lighter moments. Recommended.


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Comments

#1 | reyno-roxx on July 01 2008 10:48:25
This is a pretty decent album. In some places it reminds me of Styx and 'The Wonder Of It All' is slightly akin to Robin McAuley fronted Grand Prix.
#2 | Racer X on August 25 2011 23:19:51
You know, you pretty much nailed it. I put this on and hated the first few minutes of it. Way too wimpy and couldn't stand the singers high-pitched voice. But by the second song, I was caught up in it, and really started to dig the really bizarre mix of heavy, heavy, searing guitar with the fey poppiness. Not a lost classic, but a cool album nonetheless. I'll probably be reviewing it for the Ripple Effect
#3 | trillion1999 on October 10 2011 20:18:29
Someone has uploaded the whole album over at youtube.I love Wild Bells.One of those Never Had It So Good/Bright Night Lights/As Close As You Can Get etc type of tunes I never tire of and will love forever and beyond the end of time and longer still.Liked every song on the album.Hope it will be released on CD one day.*blushing*in love

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