by Nicholas James
After Bee Gees 1st,
the Bee Gees went straight into their next
album. Horizontal has a much bigger sound
than 1st and, with more use of electric
guitars, it has a much harder edge. There is
also less reliance on strong melodies and
more on abstract lyrics. This is perhaps
best illustrated by the hit single 'World',
which mixes swooping guitars with haunting
organs and lyrics that make the listener
think just a little. Songs such as 'Lemons
Never Forget', 'Harry Braff' and 'The
Earnest of Being George' are good examples
of 1960s rock, but are more forgettable than
much of the Bee Gees later work.
The album has two haunting Robin solo works,
'And the Sun Will Shine' (an album track
which would remain on the Bee Gees' tour
itinerary until the 1990s!) and 'Really and
Sincerely' (reportedly written after the
Hither Green train crash of earlier in the
year, in which Robin was involved). And, of
course, the album features the first ever
Bee Gees number one single, the
anti-flower-power tour de force
'Massachusetts'. It is worth buying for this
Overall, this album is less enjoyable then
the previous album, and in some ways less
polished, but it is certainly never boring.
It showcases the group moving forward and
experimenting with new ideas, with
ultimately mixed results.
The 'Expanded and Remastered' version,
released January 2007, includes a bonus CD
with previously unreleased tracks and demos.
Why Buy Horizontal?
Buy it for the main hit singles and for the
fun of trying to work out the meaning of
several of the songs!
Click here to buy 'Expanded and Remastered' version (released January 2007)
Click here to buy original CD version (released 1990)
Click here to buy as part of three-album box set (released 2000)
available as part of the box set The Studio