Saturday, May 14, 2016
Gowan: Strange Animal (1985)
Strange Animal is the only Gowan record I have heard in full. I have heard some of his other tracks, here and there. In truth, I was never a huge fan, but it would have been impossible to make it through 1985 in Canada and not have been exposed to his music. I recall that some friends hated his voice. It did remind me somewhat of Jon Anderson, at times and so it is probably an acquired taste.
A bunch of singles were released from this record, including the two most famous, Strange Animal and Criminal Mind. For me, the most interesting thing about this record is the fact that a big portion of Peter Gabriel's band appears on this record, those members being Jerry Marotta, Tony Levin, and David Rhodes. The band sounds really tight.
I would say that this record is very well recorded and catchy, but I am no sure it has endured. Bizarrely, Gowan ended up as the new lead singer for Styx, starting in 1999. I still can't get used to that. I have checked out some stuff on youtube, and I guess it makes some sense. There is no question that Gowan is an accomplished musician. Still, it just seems weird. I even heard that the band plays Criminal Mind in concert.