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8 Apr 2017

Ginhouse "Ginhouse" 1971 UK Heavy Prog










Ginhouse  "Ginhouse"  1971 UK Heavy Prog 
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watch by psychedelic baby…
Ginhouse were a trio from Newcastle consisting of Stewart Burlison (bass, vocals), Geoff Sharkey (guitar, vocals) and David Whitaker (drums). They only recorded one album. Although Ginhouse had a strong live performance at the time - they supported bands like Yes, The Who and Fleetwood Mac - this album appeared to be their swan song; they disbanded in 1972. The first reissue on CD dates from 1993 on Green Tree Records, but it failed to reach the office of Background Magazine. Thanks to Esoteric Recordings this recently remastered reissue gave me a second chance to discover the music of this band.

When you listen to this album forty years after it has been recorded you can say that it sounds rather outdated. However, I guess that isn’t a problem as long as the compositions have something to say music wise. Well, this is certainly the case and I often wondered why this band never made it to the top. Not all pieces these musicians recorded for their sole effort can be regarded as progressive rock. Mainly songs as The Journey, Portrait Picture and Fair Stood The Wind drew my attention all the way. On these tracks the keyboard parts played by producer Anders Henriksson push the music of Ginhouse towards a musical style strongly related to In The Court Of The Crimson King (1969), the debut album by King Crimson. The combination of the lead vocals, which occasionally sound like the voice of Greg Lake, the acoustic guitar, organ and Mellotron flutes reminded me of several tracks from that album.

At the time Ginhouse were also influenced by the music of The Beatles which can be heard throughout the album. Therefore I wasn’t really surprised to hear that they covered And I Love Her, one of the many Lennon & McCartney songs. They made a rather heavy version of this mellow acoustic song. Apart from the already mentioned influences I also heard touches of the hard rock scene that flourished in those days. Ginhouse’s music isn’t as heavy and loud as the music recorded by bands as Deep Purple or Black Sabbath, although the overall sound is clearly dominated by the electric guitars. Finally I heard some elements from psychedelic rock and folk music.
by Henri Strik………..

Ginhouse were such a band. A power trio that weaved back and forth from Psychedelia to Prog-rock consisted of Geoff Sharkey, guitar - Stewart Burlison, Bass and Dave Whitacker on drums. Together a few short months in 1971 before splitting off in other directions. Sharkey was previously with the band Sammy who later morphed into Audience. Burlison and Whitacker are mysteries. But Ginhouse never had a single enter the charts and this one lp came and went with very little notice and wasn’t even issued in the States. How I found out about them was something of an accident. I had done some work for Charisma Records (the label who had Genesis, Van Der Graaf Generator, Lindesfarne and many others) - they were distributed by B&C Records who dabbled in rock and Prog-rock but were primarily a Reggae label with the exception of bands like Atomic Rooster and Arnold Corn (David Bowie). The Press Officer for Charisma sent the album as an afterthought and I was hooked from Side One.

Luckily, the album has been reissued on CD by a couple of small labels in the U.K. since the original album has been seen going for hundreds of dollars on the collectors market.

This track, or actually two of them since they blend into each other are “The Journey” and “Portrait Picture”……………

This S/T only LP by the UK group Ginhouse is a pretty satisfying effort from the start to the finish. In my opinion the record is a very balanced package filled with good songs but there are no clear standout moments. The guitarwork is strong through the whole record but the quality of the songwriting leaves something to be desired. I think this album isn’t anything spectacular even if it’s a solid disc. It would benefit from a couple of strong highlights if you ask me.

If you like guitar driven progressive rock mixed with some hard rock and minor psychedelic elements you might wanna give a try to Ginhouse’s lone LP. If I’m honest I expected a bit more from this when I listened to it for the first time. The album is not a masterpiece but it does it’s job pretty well……by….
CooperBolan ………

Great progressive hard rock power trio whose compositions have lots of different changes and movements. This will appeal to people who like stuff like May Blitz amd T2. This has a cool heavy version on The Beatles “And I love Her”. Thought that it was interesting that the main vocal melody of “Tyne God” is almost identical to the song “Winter” from the German band Frame. The Korean mini lp released on the sometimes bootleg/sometimes legit label Media Arte is really neat, and features the gimmix sleeve. I have heard that there is a Japanese mini lp of this out now as well….by….thirstymoon ………

Ginhouse is a trio from Newcastle - England had only one album issued in 1971 selftitled. Even they had strong live performance in that period, this turned to be their swan song release and they disbanded in 1972-1973, as far as I know. The first CD reissue from Green Tree records in 1993 puted them on the heavy prog map again, young listners as I am discoverd this so called “new” bands some years ago. Well, Ginhouse playes , as typical for that period a mix between hard rock parts with more progressive ones, heavy prog in the end. The album sounds good, little dated after 40 years of first issue but never the less ok. Is not a typical progressive rock band with elaborated parts like other bands had in that times, is as I said heavy prog where the guitar has an important role, the keyboards are sporadicaly included in the overall sound. I like this album, forte pieces are to me The Journey and Sun in the Bottle, the rest are also ok, but not spectacular. They remind me of Whistler and theirs Ho Hum album released same year, with some psychedelic and folky touch here and there. 3 stars for Ginhouse, good but kinda forgotten heavy prog album….by  b olariu ………

Esoteric Recordings are pleased to announce the release of a newly remastered edition of the highly collectable 1971 self-titled album by GINHOUSE. Hailing from Newcastle Upon Tyne, GINHOUSE were a short lived Progressive Rock trio featuring GEOFF SHARKEY (Lead Guitar & Vocals), STEWART BURLINSON (Bass Guitar & Vocals) and DAVE WHITTAKER (Drums). This power trio played a highly imaginative and powerful form of rock, coming to the attention of B&C Records in 1970. The band recorded their only album at Abbey Road studios with producer Anders Henriksson (also producer of the legendary Quatermass). The resulting record featured excellent original compositions such as Tyne God , The Journey , The House and Sun in a Bottle , along with a highly effective reworking of The Beatles And I Love Her . Disbanding soon after the release of their only album, the music of GINHOUSE is now highly sought after by collectors of early 70s Progressive Rock. This Esoteric Recordings release has been newly remastered from the original masters and includes an illustrated booklet and a new essay……………..

Yes this a fantastic album of the old school rock of the early 1970’s
There’s not a bad track on the album
Shame the only made this masterpiece.
Right up there with heavies of the day, Sabbath, Purple, and Zep.
Proud to own this, everyone should have a copy!….By Jackarmy1071………

Ginhouse was a three piece band who recorded one album, played numerous gigs opening for more well known bands, and then broke up. The band consisted of –Geoff Sharkey-lead guitar/vocals, Stewart Burlison-bass guitar/vocals, and Dave Whitaker-drums, Anders Henriksson who produced the album is heard on keyboards. Their lone album was recorded at Abbey Road after the band won the Melody Maker Battle of the Bands competition in 1970. This reissue was digitally remastered but doesn’t list the source used–usually master tapes. But the sound is very good–clean and spacious without any digital harshness. The booklet has an essay on the band, song information and uses the original album graphics.

Ginhouse (named from the tune “Gin House Blues”) was a progressive/at times hard-rocking trio that could shift from progressive sounding music to crunching guitar-based rock at the drop of a hat. The drumming at times is reminiscent of early King Crimson. The bass was solid and deep and oftentimes kept to a song’s melody. The guitars, depending on the arrangement, were either heavy or light sounding–both electric and acoustic. Sharkey could play fast when called for, but also used acoustic guitar to good effect. You’ll also hear occasional judicious use of strings (“Portrait Picture”) and flute (“Fair Stood The Wind”) mixed in among some songs, which help flesh out the music The vocals are right out of the 70’s British scene–nothing truly outstanding but (along with the lyrics) was a good example of progressive rock of the period. All the tunes save one (The Beatles’ “And I Love Her”) are by the band which helps give the band’s overall sound and approach to the music more depth. With song titles like “Tyne God”, “The Journey”, “Fair Stood The Wind”, and “Sun In The Bottle” Ginhouse is a good example of early 70’s progressive rock.

Ginhouse was a good band that for whatever reason didn’t “make it”. Perhaps it’s because there were so many other similar bands during this period–who knows? But listen to “Life” with it’s short yet heavy guitar solo, a piano, and progressive style drumming. “Morning After” is another example of the band’s hard-rocking progressive sound. But there’s several good tracks here that make this album worth hearing–especially if you’re (like me) a fan of this period of British music.

Why this album has never been reviewed is a bit of a mystery. Maybe it’s because the band itself is a mystery. They recorded this album and then were gone. This album begins to grow on you the more you hear it–the guitars, the bass, the drumming, the strings and keyboards, the lyrics–it’s all there. Fans of (sometimes) harder progressive rock should give this a listen, Ginhouse deserved better than to be almost forgotten……….By Stuart Jefferson ……….
A personal favorite, Ginhouse’s only album was recorded on the cheap and sounds it, but is still an excellent slice of pastoral English hard rock, inspired by Jethro Tull and possibly an inspiration on Wolf People with whom they share a very English, obviously folk rock inspired hard rock sound. Includes an interesting jazzy cover of the Beatle’s And I Love Her, and some pretty atmospheric originals, especially opening track The Tyne God. …….

The Ginhouse
*Stewart Burlison - Bass Guitar, Vocals
*Dave Whitaker - Drums
*Geoff Sharkey - Lead Guitar, Vocals

Tracklist
A1 Tyne God
A2 I Cannot Understand
A3 The Journey
A4 Portrait Picture
A5 Fair Stood The Wind
B1 And I Love Her
B2 Life
B3 The Morning After
B4 The House
B5 Sun In The Bottle 

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