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Squackett - A Life Within A Day CD (album) cover

A LIFE WITHIN A DAY

Squackett

 

Crossover Prog

3.18 | 123 ratings

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SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator
Symphonic Team
2 stars 90% Hackett and 10% Squire

Chris Squire and Steve Hackett hardly need an introduction on this site. Both of them are giants of progressive Rock with musical histories going back to the classic periods of two of the most well-known and well-respected progressive Rock bands; Yes and Genesis. Both men are also personal heroes of mine and of course I had to check out this collaboration between them. I did not have high expectations though, but even with low expectations this album is somewhat disappointing. It starts out well enough, but whatever initial excitement they manage to build on the first couple of songs quickly fades as the album continues.

I was surprised to hear how low-key Squire was on this album, most of the time his presence can hardly be felt. The sound of Squackett is not 50% Squire and 50% Hackett as would naturally be expected (and of course not 50% Yes and 50% Genesis!), but rather about 90% Hackett and 10% Squire. Besides, the backing band is basically Hackett's, including Roger King on keyboards who played on Hackett's many recent studio and live albums. The most natural reference point is therefore the recent solo albums by Hackett (one to which Squire contributed). Squackett's A Life Within A Day is similar in style to Hackett solo albums like last year's Beyond The Shrouded Horizon, 2009's Out Of The Tunnel's Mouth, 2006's Wild Orchids, and 2003's To Watch The Storms, but all of those albums are superior to the present one in quality. Can it be that A Life Within A Day consists of leftovers from Hackett's recent solo sessions? That's what it sounds like!

Squire's recent track record too sets a bar too high for A Life Within A Day to meet. I have not heard his Christmas album on which Hackett plays (I generally avoid Christmas albums), but Squire's recent work with Yes, Conspiracy, and The Syn, though different in style, is also superior to the present album. Many people have compared Squackett to GTR, a musical project that included Hackett and another Yes-man in Steve Howe which resulted in a studio album in 1986 as well as a tour and live album. While most Prog fans seem to despise GTR, I personally think it was quite excellent! Sound-wise, however, there is no similarity between Squackett and GTR beyond Hackett's distinctive guitar sound.

Recommended for fans

SouthSideoftheSky | 2/5 |

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