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 Galactic Cowboys appreciation thread.... 
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Storm Trooper
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Post Galactic Cowboys appreciation thread....
G.C are probably one of the most underrated bands in metal in my view. They started out in the late 80's in Texas and signed with Geffen. Their 1991 self titled debut won rave reviews but sold bugger all, then grunge came along and squashed them. At that point Geffen had no interest in the band anymore. Their second album, Space In Your Face, sold even less and they were dropped shortly after its release.

They signed to Metal Blade in the mid 90's and released 4 albums before splitting up in 2000. Machine Fish (1996) received positive reviews from Kerrang and Metal Hammer but again, commercial success eluded them. Their 1997-2000 period was their grunge/alt-metal phase that tends to divide fans right down the middle. There are some great songs on those albums, but they don't sound particularly metal. A few songs even remind me of bands like Weezer and Ween with heavier guitars.

They reformed a few years ago and just put out their first album in 17 years called Long Way Back To The Moon. What do they sound like and why should you give a shit? Well they are kind of like a thrashy/groovy metal band that has prog elements and vocal harmonies inspired by The Beatles. I've heard some people describe them as Anthrax meets The Beatles, but they have also been compared to Kings X.

Suffice to say, they aren't easy to pigeonhole, and that's always been part of the problem. They also have a goofy sense of humour and 'bright' sounding vocals, which perhaps don't always sit right with a lot of metal fans. What I like is the way their harmonies often come out of nowhere via key changes etc, and they can really take you by surprise. Their sound is also unusually layered for a metal band at times, closer to classic rock/pop. At their best they merge heavy riffs with euphoric vocal melodies.

I'd say the new album isn't a bad place to start for those who are curious--although I had reservations about songs like Zombies at first--even if it's not their best work. There are a couple of average groove metal songs on there, but overall it's pretty damn solid.

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Their debut:

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Machine Fish (1996):

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Assorted tracks from their grungier and/or poppier albums:




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Last edited by Stat_Rad on Sun Dec 24, 2017 4:49 am, edited 1 time in total.



Sat Dec 23, 2017 12:09 pm
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Climate Control
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Post Re: Galactic Cowboys appreciation thread....
Never heard of them TBH. I'll check those links out later.

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Sat Dec 23, 2017 7:35 pm
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Storm Trooper
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Post Re: Galactic Cowboys appreciation thread....
I'm not surprised Sol. Most people haven't.

Sometimes I get the impression that their name turns people off too. It sounds hair metal.

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Sun Dec 24, 2017 4:50 am
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Space Ranger
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Post Re: Galactic Cowboys appreciation thread....
Stat_Rad wrote:
I'm not surprised Sol. Most people haven't.

Sometimes I get the impression that their name turns people off too. It sounds hair metal.


I remember when they first appeared: I really wanted to like them, but found their sound to be a bit too middle-of-the-road, for me. I may have to revisit them to see if my opinion has changed.

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Sun Dec 24, 2017 10:25 am
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Star Trooper
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Post Re: Galactic Cowboys appreciation thread....
They just came at the wrong time for the most part, but they and a lot of the bands that share a similar vibe (Ugly Kid Joe for example) didn't have a big window to capitalise on. Even groups that were having success around that time like Living Colour were pretty much done commercially by the time that grunge really set in. It is a shame because they took often great riffs and put them in a really accessible context with a lot of great and distinctive vocals, and Galactic Cowboys are no exception. Faith No More seems to be the only band from around then that managed to push through for the rest of decade and remain relevant.

The sense of humour certainly didn't help either. Another interesting tidbit is that Galactic Cowboys were guided by the same guy (Sam Taylor) who produced all the early King's X albums, and it really shows in the vocal harmonies and how they were married to heavy guitar riffs.

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Mon Dec 25, 2017 12:46 pm
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Storm Trooper
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Post Re: Galactic Cowboys appreciation thread....
Yeh, and even FNM, as successful as they were, didn't have half the fanbase they had in 1990 in the mid 90's.

I was going to mention UKJ earlier, but I've blabbered on about that transitional period between glam and grunge too many times before. Hah. You are right, most bands were hung out to dry after 1992.

Chinese, who do you prefer out of Galactic and Kings?

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Mon Dec 25, 2017 1:06 pm
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Post Re: Galactic Cowboys appreciation thread....
There is this small period from '88 to '92 I guess, where Guns N' Roses were at the height of their powers, and even bands that fell more towards the glam side, like Skid Row and to a lesser extent Armored Saint, that had at least a similar attitude on the songwriting side that really emphasized having a great main riff and catchy vocal melodies, where it was removed enough from the glam/hair bands due to either an injection of punk attitude (G'N'R/Skid Row) or more thrash-influenced (Armored Saint).

Galactic Cowboys falls in a similar category for mine with their Anthrax-like riffs (more on the fun side of thrash/crossover) and combining them with the vocal harmonies of King's X. And although they didn't really have a stellar and highly versatile frontman like the groups mentioned above, or FNM, or even Whitfield Crane with UKJ, those harmonies really helped them stand out.

Let us also not forget that Metallica were dropping their biggest commercial success at the same time, and it is totally devoid of any of the humour that Galactic Cowboys were known for. Grunge's ultra-seriousness (or at least perceived ultra-seriousness, though many of those musicians did tend to look with contempt upon anything they considered 'slick' in rock) was just the final nail.

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Mon Dec 25, 2017 1:42 pm
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