Bigelf – Cheat The Gallows (CD)

Bigelf has broken big to the point that Linda Perry (formerly of 4 Non Blondes) has allowed them to be a focal point of eir Custard Records. Bigelf has been a major force in the United States prog-rock genre for well over a decade, and the added notoriety given “Cheat The Gallows” by this bump up in labels will undoubtedly bring many more fans to Bigelf’s side. The disc itself begins with “Greatest Show On Earth”, a track that creates a very carnival-esque atmosphere that brings with it all the pomp and circumstance of a parade. The rock comes soon after, blending together this atmosphere with a very Arthur Brown-type of approach to the genre.

The drums play a major part in this track, while the act shifts gears a number of times, calling forth acts such as Queen, The Who, and Pink Floyd. Even though the compositions present during the early segment of “Cheat The Gallows” – and particularly the aforementioned “Greatest Show On Earth” touch upon the seventies, the maturity and talent present in Bigelf make the compositions speak to a current audience. “Money, It’s Pure Evil” is another stand-out track to be had on “Cheat The Gallows”. As was the case with “Greatest Show On Earth”, there is a decided effort by the band to craft a specific way to interpret the track before Bigelf creates the first note. “Money, It’s Pure Evil” flips the script, adding more than a fair share of “Permanent Vacation”-era Aerosmith to the mix.

Despite the fact that the tracks on “Cheat The Gallows” touch upon seventies and eighties rock, there is still some sense that what the band is doing on tracks like “Superstar” and “Hydra” is something that is completely of their own creation. There are quite a few individuals that do not know who Bigelf is at this juncture, but hopefully the added notoriety that will be generated by “Cheat The Gallows” will ensure that a steady trickle of fans will come to Bigelf’s shows and pick up the band’s ever-increasing discography.

Top Tracks: No Parachute, Race With Time

Rating: 7.8/10

Bigelf – Cheat The Gallows / 2008 Custard / 10 Tracks / / /

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Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University. I have been the editor at NeuFutur / since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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