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Articles Home » 1987 Articles » Gowan - 1987 Great Dirty World
Gowan - 1987 Great Dirty World

ALBUM: Great Dirty World
SERIAL: FC 40754
YEAR: 1987


LINEUP: (Lawrence) Gowan - vocals, piano, keys

Additional Musicians: Gene Black - guitar * J. Peter Robinson - keyboards, bass synth * Rob Brill - drums, percussion * Tony Levin, Will Lee - bass * Terry Gowan - stick * Nigel Olsson - drums * Brandon Fields - sax * Deborah Silver, Kaz Silver-Lee - backing vocals * Jon Anderson - special guest lead vocal on 'Moonlight Desires' * The San Fernando Valley Mens Choir and Choral Singers - arranged & conducted by Bob Ezrin

TRACK LISTING: 01 Moonlight Desires * 02 Awake The Giant * 03 Living In The Golden Age * 04 Dedication * 05 Human Drama * 06 Forever One * 07 One Brief Shining Moment * 08 60 Second Nightmare * 09 Great Dirty World


Lawrence Gowan is another chap well represented here at GDAZE. Of course, these days Lawrence is busy spinning his keyboard tricks with Styx, but long before that, Lawrence had a solo career. It started way back in 1982, but even before then, Lawrence was a performer back in the 70's plying his trade in the Canadian prog rock scene. We will eventually get to most of his solo material. 'Lost Brotherhood' has been covered, we next move onto his 1987 album 'Great Dirty World', which did well on the Canadian charts back in the day. There are some big name players on this album, CBS providing Gowan with the resources to deliver something big. It didn't quite work out that way. There are some good tracks, some not so good tracks.. I feel side one is much stronger than side two.

The Songs
Loading up with 'Moonlight Desires', this one interested many due to the Jon Anderson connection, who appears on it. The track did very well on the Canadian charts. 'Awaken The Giant' is a hi-tech reminder of bands such as Mike + The Mechanics, even 'Living In The Golden Age' as a ballad, has some good moments, with the The San Fernando Valley Mens Choir at the end giving it some beef. 'Dedication' continues the Gowan balladry, a soft lilting affair that is mesmerizing under a set of headphones. Side 2 sets out with 'Human Drama', an energetic piece no doubt, but those synth parps become annoying way too soon. Much better is 'Forever One', a serious piano laden track with more of a sense of drama than its predecessor. 'One Brief Shining Moment' is a very cool tune, pumping hi-tech, with some sax blasts courtesy of Brandon Fields joining in. '60 Second Nightmare' is a darker themed tune, the songtitle and lyrics are a bit a giveaway. It didn't do a lot for me, nor did the closing title track 'Great Dirty World' unfortunately.

In Summary
Probably not one of Gowan's better albums. 'Lost Brotherhood' is much better, and as mentioned, we'll take a look at his two earlier solo albums too at some point.

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#1 | reyno-roxx on November 19 2013 19:40:56
Managed to recently pick the original CD release up from ebay at a good price far less than its being sold on Amazon etc these days. He's never topped the S/T debut, but this is rather enjoyable nonetheless.
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