Galaxy-Lin


Band members               Related acts

  line up 1 (1974-75)

- Rudy Bennett -- vocals

- Hugo van Haastert -- mandolin

- Robbie van Leeuwen -- mandolin

- Hans van Vos -- mandolin

- Dick Remelink -- sax, flute

- Peter Rijnvis -- drums

- Peter Wassenaar -- bass

 

  line up 2 (1975)

- Rudy Bennett -- vocals

- Hugo van Haastert -- mandolin

- Robbie van Leeuwen -- mandolin

NEW - Skip van Rooy -- keyboards

- Hans van Vos -- mandolin

- Dick Remelink -- sax, flute

- Peter Rijnvis -- drums

- Peter Wassenaar -- bass

 

  line up 3 (1975-76)

- Rudy Bennett -- vocals

- Robbie van Leeuwen -- mandolin

- Skip van Rooy -- keyboards

NEW - Hans van Vos -- mandolin (replaced Hans van Vos)

- Dick Remelink -- sax, flute

- Peter Rijnvis -- drums

- Peter Wassenaar -- bass

 

 

 

- Blue Planet (Peter Wassenaar)

- The Buffoons (Skip van Rooy)

- Ekseption (Dick Remelink)

- Jupiter (Rudy Bennett)

- Lemming (Hans von Los)

- Mistral (Robbie van Leeuwen)

The Motions (Robbie van Leeuwen)

- The Shocking Blue (Robbie van Leeuwen)

- Trace  (Dick Remelink)

- Triad (Hugo van Haastert)

 

 

 


 

Genre: rock

Rating: 2 stars **

Title:  G

Company: Polydor

Catalog: 2925 037
Year: 1975

Country/State: G

Grade (cover/record): VG+ / VG+

Comments: Dutch pressing

Available: 1

Catalog ID: 5945

Price: $30.00

 

Mention the name Robbie (Robby) van Leeuwen to most folks and you'll get a blank stare.  That's unfortunate since van Leeuwen is one of Holland's most talented musicians.  In a career stretching back to the mid-1960s he's served as one of the driving forces behind such bands as The Motions, The Shocking Blue (and you thought the ever hot Mariska Veres (RIP) was the brains behind the band), and the far lesser known Galaxy-Lin.

 

By the mid-1970s, Shocking Blues' never ending recording and touring schedules had left multi-instrumentalist van Leeuwen burned out.  Technically he remained a member of the band, but largely in name only; instead deciding to turn his attention to the outside project Galaxy-Lin.   

 

In addition to van Leeuwen, Galaxy Lin showcased an impressive collection of Dutch musicians, including former Jupiter singer Rudy Bennett, mandolin players Hugo van Haastert and Hans van Vos, ex-Ekseption sax player Dick Remelink, drummer Peter Rijnvis, and former Blue Planet bassist Peter Wassenaar.  

 

Polydor promo picture

 

Signed by Polydor, the band made their debut with 1974's cleverly title "Galaxy-Lin" (Polydor catalog number 292 5025)

 

.

 

The band's second and final release for Polydor came in the form of 1975's "G".  While clearly intended as a full band collaboration, the album again spotlighted van Leeuwen who served as producer and was credited with penning virtually all of the material.  So what did this one sound like?   Well, anyone hoping to hear Shocking Blue-styled pop-rock was liable to be disappointed.  Recorded without electric guitars, the collection found the band exploring a bunch of genres including stabs at English folk (their cover of Bert Jansch's 'Hunting Song'), material with a jazz-rock edge that showcased sax/flute player Remelink's contributions (I Know My Baby''), and a couple of more commercial, pop-oriented tracks ('Long Hot Summer'). Side two was given over to a pair of extended instrumental suites ('Bizarre Medley' and 'Ode to the Highways Medley') that were simply too adult contemporary jazzy to sustain much interest.  Unfortunately, at least to my ears little on the set made a lasting impression. 

 

- The combination of Remelink's jazzy sax moves, the rhythm section's funky bottom, some bubbly synthesizers, those mandolins, and Bennett's gravely vocal made the opener 'I Know My Baby' extremely hard to describe.  It may have been weird, but it was certainly fun.   rating: *** stars

- 'Long Hot Summer' started out sounding like something off of a Focus album, before opening up into the album's most commercial track.  Yeah, it took a moment to get accustomed to Bennett's accented vocals, and the instrumental breaks disrupted the songs flow, but overall the track actually rocked along with considerable energy.  Easy to see why it was tapped as the first single.  By the way, this one sure sounded like it has some electric guitar on it.  Check out the fade out jam section.   rating: *** stars

- The lone cover, 'Hunting Song' was also the album's most folk-oriented track. If you were a fan of the Pentangle original (think it was on "Basket of Light"), then this version probably didn't do a great deal for you.  The jazz-fusion section was certainly unexpected.   For some reason Polydor tapped this as the album' second single.  rating: ** stars

- 'Don't' found the band going back to a brighter, more commercial sound.  With a breezy melody and nifty hook, this one would have made a nice single.  rating: *** stars

- 'Bizarre Medley' was an eight minute, three part instrumental composition.  'Bizarre' started out sounding like a slice of new age mediation background music and then picked up a bit of rock attitude with what sounded like some electric guitar to my ears.  Pleasant, but not the most invigorating thing you ever heard.    rating: ** stars

- The midsection segment 'Yquem' showcased mandolins, flute and some synthesizers.  Once again, the instrumental had a vague new age feeling that simply didn't do a great deal for me.    rating: ** stars

- Complete with bells and what again sounded like electric guitar, 'Finale' sounded a little like something from Mike Oldfield's "Tubular Bells" album.

- 'Ode to the Highways Medley' was another three part instrumental suite.  'Ode to the Highways' started the composition out with a adult contemporary jazz feel.  Nothing particularly special, though it was interesting to note it would be another ten years until this kind of stuff started clogging the airwaves.   rating: ** stars

- The keyboard powered instrumental started out sounding like something off of a Liberace collection before switching gear into a synthesizer propelled mood piece.  Again, the results were very adult contemporary jazzy.    rating: ** stars

 

Polydor also tapped the album for a pair of Dutch singles:

 

 

- 1975's 'Long Hot Summer' b/w 'Fool' (Polydor catalog number 205 0364)

- 1975's 'The Hunting Song' b/w 'Don't' (Polydor catalog number 205 0381)

 

Simply nowhere near as likeable as The Motions, Shocking Blue, or some of the other bands the principals had played with.

 

"G" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) I Know My Baby   (Robby van Leeuwen) - 5:18

2.) Long Hot Summer    (Robby van Leeuwen)- 4:53

3.) Hunting Song   (Bert Jansch - John Renbourn) - 5:09

4.) Don't    (Robby van Leeuwen)- 3:04

 

(side 2)
1.) Bizarre Medley - 8:10

     a.) Bizarre (instrumental)    (Robby van Leeuwen)

     b.) Yquem (instrumental)   (Robby van Leeuwen)

     c.) Finale (instrumental)   (Robby van Leeuwen)

2.) Ode to the Highways Medley - 7:37

     a.) Ode to the Highways (instrumental)   (Robby van Leeuwen)

     b.) The Entertainer (instrumental)   (Robby van Leeuwen)

     c.) Mandolin Morning (instrumental)   (Robby van Leeuwen)

 

 

 

 

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