GOWAN – Great Dirty World [Special Deluxe Edition remastered +3]
For more than 15 years Lawrence GOWAN is a stable member of Styx, but long before that, this Canadian had a quite successful solo career started in the Eighties. Released a couple years after ‘Strange Animal’ — the album that really launched Gowan’s career, at least in his homeland – “Great Dirty World” establishes a transition: from light poppy AOR to rock, from a predominantly synthesized sound to something more visceral, from teen years to maturity.
Celebrating its anniversary, Gowan released this “Great Dirty World / Special Deluxe Edition“, remastered, including newly recorded versions of 3 tracks as bonus and a completely new artwork.
Originally “Great Dirty World” did well in the Canadian charts back in the day. There are some big name players on this album, such as Tony Levin (Asia), great guitarist Gene Black (Wild Blue, Device, Tim Feehan), drummer Nigel Olsson (Elton John) or Brandon Fields (Tower of Power).
This recording proves how good a melodist Gowan can be. It also also gave him his biggest taste of international attention, thanks to the opening track and first single “Moonlight Desires”, featuring Yes’ Jon Anderson as guest vocalist.
The latter’s contribution is more than that of a usual back-up singer, his angelic voice, entering two-thirds into this pop anthem, makes it literally soar.
Other highlights include the ballads “Great Dirty World” and “Dedication”, one of the finest songs Gowan has written, thanks to a memorable melody in the verse and a bombastic chorus.
“Awake The Giant” and “Human Drama” are fine uptempo numbers combining mid-’80s rock with commercial lite prog in the vein of Asia or ’80s Rush, including synths.
This “Great Dirty World [Special Deluxe Edition]” has a terrific sound thanks to a clear remaster, and includes as bonuses freshly recorded versions of “Fovever One”, “One Brief Shining Moment” and “Great Dirty World”, showcasing Gowan’s sensibility to re-arrange his compositions with class.
One of Canada’s finest musicians, and a disc to enjoy in plenitude.
You’ve seen it first here, at 0dayrox
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
10 – Forever One [New Version]
11 – One Brief Shining Moment [New Version]
12 – Great Dirty World [New Version]
Lawrence Gowan – vocals, piano, keyboards
Gene Black – guitars
J. Peter Robinson – keyboards, bass synth
Tony Levin – bass, stick
Will Lee – bass
Terry Gowan – stick
Rob Brill – drums, percussion
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
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