The Missing Piece

Artist: Gentle Giant
Label: Capitol Records
Catalog#: ST-11696
Format: Vinyl
Country: United States
Released: 1977-08
A1 Two Weeks In Spain 3:00
A2 I'm Turning Around 3:54
A3 Betcha Thought We Could't Do It 2:20
A4 Who Do You Think You Are? 3:33
A5 Mountain Time 3:19
B1 As Old As You're Young 4:19
B2 Memories Of Old Days 7:15
B3 Winning 4:12
B4 For Nobody 4:00

Engineer - Paul Northfield
Performer - Derek Shulman
Performer - Gary Green
Performer - John Weathers
Performer - Kerry Minnear
Performer - Ray Shulman
Producer - Gentle Giant
Written-By - Derek Shulman
Written-By - Kerry Minnear
Written-By - Ray Shulman


Recorded At Relight Studios, Hilvarenbeek, Holland
Remixed At Scorpio Sound, Euston Centre, London
All track listings, etc. listed on side 1 of disc label, side 2 label is green with a drawing of "the missing piece" in white.

Strawberry Bricks Entry: 
With the live double-album behind them, Gentle Giant returned to the studio. The band had reached a kind of artistic critical mass by now, as had most progressive bands of the era; but in commercial terms, record sales had hit a plateau. Thus, change was in order, and the order was something shorter and certainly different: The Missing Piece. The album kicks off with the bright, cheerful and brief "Two Weeks in Spain," quite unlike anything Gentle Giant had ever recorded before. And that was only the start! "I'm Turning Around" is a love song, and one undoubtedly tailor-made for radio airplay. So herein lies the reality of this "new" era in popular music. It was 1977 and no one-not even Gentle Giant-was going to kid themselves that the ole prog rock would still cut the proverbial mustard. The old tricks were just that. The wryly autobiographical "Betcha Thought We Couldn't Do It" is simple rock ‘n' roll, as is "Mountain Time;" but who's impressed? From a progressive standpoint, the second side fares much better: Both "As Old as You're Young" and "For Nobody" contain the interplay and spark of the Giant of old, while "Memories of Old Days," clocking in at seven minutes, almost double anything else on the record. Idyllic and nostalgic, its twin guitars sound like a long-lost friend; the track would remain the perennial favorite from the album. Shortly after its release, the band played the BBC's Sight and Sound TV program, combining a curious set of older classics with new material. And, in another slight vindication for the new direction, the album did chart in the US, reaching No. 81; but as usual, it was largely ignored in the band's native England.
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