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Hobbit - 1999 Two Feet Tall

ARTIST: Hobbit
ALBUM: Two Feet Tall
LABEL: Independent
YEAR: 1999


LINEUP: Gene Fields - vocals, guitars * Richard Hill - guitars, keyboards * Paul 'Turk' Henry - bass, vocals * Keith Young - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Midyears Eve * 02 Two Feet Tall * 03 Love Is Forever * 04 Up And Down * 05 Intensity * 06 The Christmas Song * 07 The Way We Are * 08 Takin' Your Heart Away * 09 Need Your Love * 10 Puppets * 11 Till I Get You Back * 12 Take Me Tonight * 13 Faggots In The Fire


Well these guys go back a way. Right back to 1977 in fact, and from that lone star state called Texas. A fair bit of water has definitely passed under the Hobbit's bridge in between times, to the point where nearly a quarter of a century has gone by and these guys get some long overdue recognition. Some would call their style pomp, some would call it art rock, perhaps symphonic, even progressive. Hobbit prefer to call it fantasy rock. That's a new take on a musical genre known for it's many and varied styles. They come at you in the much the same direction as bands like Styx, Morningstar, Hybrid Ice and to a lesser extent Yes. A tight sound, complex arrangements, parping keys, and multi part vocals.

The Songs
While the band has a love of J.R Tolkien's works, there's not much to show for it from the songs because in the main, it's hard rockin' contemporary pomp all the way. Sure some of the moments are quite laid back, like the very commercial 'Love Is Forever' but for those who have a yearning for Styxian type material then look no further. The songs range from the period between 1979 and 1983, and for some classic examples of the genre take a listen to 'The Way We Are', the barnstorming 'Takin' Your Heart Away' or the very AOR effort of 'Need Your Love'. 'Midyears Eve' is another period pomp track, while their subtlety takes on new meaning with the mainly acoustic based but rather nice 'The Christmas Song'. Some of their other efforts are heavy handed by nature, giving one an indication as to what they sound like when the engine is running hot. There's the live rendition of the title track, while the unfortunately named 'Faggots In The Fire' cranks along big time. A mixture of soft and hard, as well as keyboard based versus guitar based.

In Summary
I understand from the band that they have a new album due out in 2001, Incredible to think that this band are now starting to find popular acclaim many years after they first surfaced. Hobbit definitely do not have a modern sound, and like many visitors to this site, they still prefer to embed their tastes and influences from a bygone age.

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#1 | reyno-roxx on April 10 2008 14:35:59
I remember getting a live tape of these guys from a fellow Angel fan who lived in Texas back in 1981. It still kicks severe pomp rock ass and I was delighted to find most of the songs on that tape were to be found on this album many, many years later. Great band!

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