Exposé Online banner

Gravity Tree — Life or Dessert?
((Not on label) no#, 2000, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2000-10-01

Life or Dessert? Cover art

A complete surprise out of left field, Gravity Tree is the duo of Linc (lead vocals, acoustic and electric guitars, basses) and Alan Nu (vocals, drums, percussion, and synthesizers), playing together since the 80s, based in the SF bay area. Their very full sound is, of course, based around guitars, working in a song-oriented progressive rock vein, rich with harmonies and melodic hooks but steering far clear of anything that could be considered commercial. Word has it that the duo does it all live – Linc with a customized twin-neck bass / guitar and Nu with keyboard and synth triggers on his kit, and have been performing live this way for years. Their sound is a very original one, not easy to pin down with a few common comparisons, though certainly some King Crimson influences are evident (further reinforced by Linc’s occasional Wetton-like vocals), as well as Rush. But none of these influences affects the strong melodic sensibility that pervade each of the disc’s 12 cuts; A more obscure, but accurate reference might be Canadian band Terraced Garden, although when Gravity Tree gets down to business it’s a much heavier attack, with snarly distorted guitars and a brutal bottom end, driven by Nu’s superb and often complex drumwork. Plenty of highlights: “Harmonic Indulgence” with a tricky two-part vocal refrain and angular rhythmic pattern, with a center solo section recalling guitarists from the ECM stable; the title track with its powerful refrain of symphonic fusion; and the closer, “Three’s Two,” opening with a brilliant acoustic guitar solo under a repeating electric structure. Much to recommend herein.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 20, 2000 releases

Related artist(s): Gravity Tree

More info
http://store.cdbaby.com/cd/gravitytree

Latest news

2018-11-16
The Seventeenth Dream of Dr Sardonicus Festival Tickets Now Available – Fruits de Mer Records and their merry crew of psychedelic explorers are getting set to present the next The Seventeenth Dream of Dr. Sardonicus Festival. The dates are set for August 2-4, 2019 at The Cellar Bar in Cardigan, Wales. They've also announced that the legendary Groundhogs will top the bill. » Read more

2018-11-02
Charles O'Meara (C.W. Vrtacek) RIP – A true musical original has left us. Charles O'Meara, who recorded under the name C.W. Vrtacek, was a wild-card musical talent, ranging from complex progressive rock to introspective modern compositions, with stops at many places inbetween. » Read more

2018-10-17
Eurock Documentary Seeks Funding – We've been fans and fellow travelers with Archie Patterson and his Eurock project on the journey to discover great music. After many years of promoting and trying to spread the word,a new phase is beginning: a documentary film. Things like this don't just happen, and money does not magically appear to make it happen, so it's up to the fans to get it done. » Read more

2018-09-29
Marty Balin RIP – One of the architects of the 60s psychedelic sound of San Francisco has died at the age of 76. Marty Balin was a singer, songwriter, and guitarist who was one of the founders of Jefferson Airplane. After the split of the original Airplane, Balin went on to form the highly successful Jefferson Starship. » Read more

2018-09-25
Help the Psychic Equalizer Avoid Extinction – Last year we reviewed the debut album by Psychic Equalizer, a musical project of Hugo Selles. He's now working on the ambitious follow-up to that release, and is seeking funding from listeners around the world. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Glass Hammer - The Inconsolable Secret – One could arguably claim that this release finds American prog band Glass Hammer at the top of their game, which probably explains the scope of this effort. First of all, it s a two-disk set in a...  (2006) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues