Exposé Online banner

Anthony Phillips & Guillermo Cazenave — The Meadows of Englewood
(Astral Records CD999, 1996, CD)

Anthony Phillips — Private Parts and Pieces IX: Dragonfly Dreams
(Blueprint BP229CD, 1996, CD)

by Mike Ezzo, Published 1998-02-01

The Meadows of Englewood Cover artPrivate Parts and Pieces IX: Dragonfly Dreams Cover art

The most artistically inclined and prolific of all Genesis members past or present is (how ironic) also the least popular. Nevertheless Phillips has neither given up nor given in, as these two recent humdingers will prove. Consistently the quintessential Englishman shirks commercialism, unabashedly bucking incipient trends and refusing to dilute his work by cheap attempts to turn a few quid. For this alone he deserves at least a hearing. Part nine in the Private Parts & Pieces series, Dragonfly Dreams is one of Anthony's quietest low-key outings, but displays a finely-tuned maturity in his compositional language. PP&P 8: New England is probably the closest reference point here — with all the acoustic twelve and six-string solos and duets. "She'll be Waiting" offers a nice contrast as a vocal song, his finest vocal moment yet, while "Quango" breathes the fires of Latin America. Significant is that PP&P 9 is more cohesive than earlier parts of the series. It is hard to find an artist who consistently refines his craft in this way. Had I know at the time, Dragonfly Dreams would have made my Best-of-'96 list without question.

A very different entry in the Phillips canon, The Meadows of Englewood is the male counterpart to Dragonfly's female side, in that mostly robust and dramatic keyboard pieces dominate. The half-hour long title work captures the CDs spotlight. Some resemblance to Slow Dance may be discerned in the extended arrangement which runs through a stream-of-consciousness sequence of thematic statements and free-spirited diversions. After all this is one of only a few epics he has done for this kind of setting. A rare appearance of electric guitar elicits from partner Cazenave some inspired axe-wielding. The album's real kicker for me though is the seventeen-minute "Picaresca" where Ant's impassioned performance stretches the twelve strings to the point of breakage. Two pieces from other albums — "Lucy: An Illusion" and "She'll be Waiting" — pull in acoustic directions, but the main thrust of Meadows is the expansive undulating atmospheres that recall "Slow Waves, Soft Stars" and some of his library and soundtrack work.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 14, 1996 releases

Related artist(s): Anthony Phillips, Enrique "Quique" Berro García

Latest news

2020-03-24
Bill Rieflin RIP – The sad news reaches us today of Bill Rieflin's death. Rieflin was best known as a drummer in bands ranging from post-punk to industrial to indie-rock to progressive rock, including work with The Blackouts, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Swans, Land, and King Crimson. Rieflin had been battling cancer for several years, and succumbed to it on March 24. He was 59. » Read more

2020-03-17
Cruise to the Edge and Seaprog 2020 Festivals Postponed – The worldwide outbreak of the novel coronavirus has started to produce casualties in the music world, and festivals are not immune. We've had word that both the Cruise to the Edge (originally slated for March 27 - April 1) and Seaprog (originally June 5-7) have been postponed to later dates, with those dates to be announced. » Read more

2020-03-06
McCoy Typer RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of one of the most influential pianists in the history of jazz, McCoy Tyner. His tenure with John Coltrane in the early 60s includes some of the most treasured recordings of the era, including My Favorite Things and A Love Supreme. After leaving Coltrane's group, he had a long and successful solo career. He was 81. » Read more

2020-02-18
Jon Christensen RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of Norwegian drummer Jon Christensen, a musician whose sensitive playing did much to help define the atmospheric sound of ECM jazz recordings. His work with Jan Garbarek, Bobo Stenson, Terje Rypdal, and many more was sensitive and varied, adapting to a wide variety of styles while maintaining a distinct identity of its own. Christensen was 76. » Read more

2020-01-21
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Asgard - Imago Mundi – This, Asgard's fourth album, covers plenty of new territory, recaptures some of the lost ground from their original sound, and offers a quite a bit more accessibility - while maintaining a generally...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues