Probably the most appropriately named group of all time, The Gods were the spring-board for many musicians of great importance to the genre of progressive rock. One name is immediately brought to mind with nearly every track on both albums, Ken Hensley, also of Uriah Heep, Weed, Blackfoot, and Toe Fat fame. In so many ways these albums are the foundations upon which Uriah Heep was created, and his writing and vocal styling's are quite standout throughout both albums. However, there is no “I” in “band”, so these are by no means Ken solo efforts.
The next notable mention goes out to drummer Lee Kerslake who furthers the obvious Uriah Heep connection. But The Gods also gave us both John and Brian Glascock. Bassist John continued on with several other notable groups like Carmen and Toe Fat until his untimely heart attack in 1979 at age 28 while playing for Jethro Tull. Brother Brian was the drummer for Carmen, Toe Fat, and the 1980s AOR act The Motels. Yet there are still more Gods, Mick Taylor played guitar in the early incarnation before eventually joining up with John Mayall's Bluesbreakers and then the Rolling Stones. Alan Shacklock also had a stint in the Gods before going on to found Babe Ruth and producing many gold and platinum award recordings for artists such as Mike Oldfield, Bonnie Tyler, Jeff Beck, Meat Loaf, The Alarm, and Roger Daltrey. Perhaps the best-known of all the Gods however would be Greg Lake, later of King Crimson and Emerson, Lake and Palmer. I cannot imagine a more compelling reason to check out the Gods, they literally read like a who's who of rock nobility. I could rattle on and on about each song or how much I enjoy the vast majority, but with this many great musicians being involved, you can rest assured that the music is great and the best idea is to pick up your own copies.
Some might try to categorize this music as late psychedelia or even early proto-prog, and yes it has elements of both like so many of its contemporary releases offered, but in the end this is The Gods, and they make that point quite convincingly throughout. Esoteric Records / Cherry Red Records has graciously included both the mono and stereo issues on separate CDs of Genesis, and numerous bonus tracks on both albums complete with a lengthy story behind the band. Without any hesitation I can say that these are essential works for anyone who is a collector or fan of progressive, psychedelic, or any of the related bands. This is the music of the Gods!
**** Thomas Rhymer
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