Gerard - Live in Marseille/Battle Triangle. 1998 Japan


Gerard had 7 studio albums prior to this, their first live album. All the tracks have been culled from their studio recordings, and there's an additional cover of a Banco del Mutuo Soccorso composition from Darwin. Generally live albums bore me, as they're nothing but a run-through of the studio material, but recorded in front of a live audience. That's not the case here. First of all, it's just the keyboard trio. As such, no vocals or guitars are present. Rather it's a non-stop blitzkrieg of Hammond fueled* instrumental workouts with fuzz bass and hyperactive drumming - and where each track has been turned up to "11". The album is just relentless in its intensity. Those looking for color or nuance will need to skip right over this one. Imagine the 1970 UK group Aardvark on a non-stop bender without vocals. Not for the fainthearted.

*This is absolutely the sound they obtain, but in reading the liner notes and the internet, it appears all the keyboards used were modern day Korg synthesizers run through Leslie pedals. If only other contemporary bands had adopted such a thick and meaty sound!

Personal collection
CD: 1998 Made in Japan

The first scan is the MIJ release and the second is from Musea. The album is titled Live in Marseille, subtitled Battle Triangle, and further it says "Ltd. Edition for Fan Club", as the indigenous release features one short bonus piece called 'Revenge', which sounds just as great as everything else on the album.

Last listen: 2015

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