Shapeshifter (Gong album) - Wikipedia

Shapeshifter (Gong album)

Shapeshifter is the ninth studio album released under the name Gong and the sixth album by the Daevid Allen version of the group. It was released in 1992. It is the first proper album from Daevid Allen's Gong since You from 1974. It is the first album from the original group without founding member Gilli Smyth. Didier Malherbe and Allen are the only two returning performers from the previous album. Pip Pyle, who performed on Continental Circus and Camembert Electrique also returns.

Gong Shapeshifter fr.l.jpg
Studio album by
RecordedSep 1991 - Jul 1992
GenrePsychedelic rock, progressive rock, folk music, space rock[1]
LabelCelluloid, Lightyear
ProducerDino Watkyn, Nigel Gilroy
Daevid Allen's Gong chronology
Zero to Infinity
Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic3/5 stars[1]

With main character Zero the hero, the album continues the Gong mythology, the central part of which was formed with the Radio Gnome Trilogy of albums,[2] comprising Flying Teapot in 1973, followed by Angel's Egg, 1973, and You in 1974.

In episode four in the album Shapeshifter (1992), Zero meets an urban shaman who agrees to take Zero to the next level of awareness on the proviso that Zero spends nine months on an airplane, travelling where he wants but not using money or eating anything other than airline food. Zero eventually dies in Australia under mysterious circumstances.[3][4]

— Gong, Facebook


Over the years since 1992, there have been different releases of the album with different numbers of tracks. On "the original as it was planned",[2] the Gong website lists #12: "Là Bas Là Bas" and #13: "I Gotta Donkey" - these are not found on the 1997 Lightyear release. That release[1] has a closing bonus track titled "Goddess Invocation Om Riff", recorded live at Ynys Witren at summer solstice 1992.[5]


  • Daevid Allen: Acoustic, glissando and lewd guitarplay, vocals, midwifery
  • Graham Clark: Violins, voices
  • Shyamal Maitra: Tablas, ghatam, djembé, darbuka, techno percs, programming. Drums on 13
  • Keith Bailey: Bass guitar, vocals: 2, 9
  • Didier Malherbe: Bass, tenor, alto and soprano saxophones. WX7, keyboards, dogs, piccolo, flutes
  • Pip Pyle: Drums, ten green bottles and scream

Guest personnelEdit

  • Charlelie Couture: Vocals: 12
  • Tom the Poet: Instant radio poetry during US tour with Daevid: 13
  • Loy Ehrlich: Keyboards: 8, Kora: 5
  • Mark Robson: Keyboards and sportin' vocals: 22

Additional personnel on bonus trackEdit

In the Allmusic review[1] of the 1997 release and in its Discogs entry,[5] additional personnel is listed:

  • Mike Howlett: Bass
  • Peter Kimberley: Vocals
  • Steffi Sharpstrings: Guitar
  • Gilli Smyth: Space Whisper, Vocals, Whistle (Human)
  • Twink: Synthesizer

Track listingEdit

  1. "Gnomerique" (Allen) − 0:07
  2. "Shapeshifter" (Allen, Malherbe) − 4:53
  3. "Hymnalayas" (Allen, Bailey) − 7:38
  4. "Dog-o-matic" (Maitra) − 3:00
  5. "Spirit With Me" (Allen, Ehrlich) − 2:27
  6. "Mr Albert Parkin" (Clark) − 0:17
  7. "Raindrop Tablas" (Maitra) − 0:21
  8. "Give My Mother a Soul Call" (Yogananda) − 4:30
  9. "Heaven's Gate" (Allen, Bailey) − 4:49
  10. "Snake Tablas" (Maitra) − 0:34
  11. "Loli" (Allen, Clark) − 5:09
  12. "Là Bas Là Bas" (Couture, Allen) − 4:06
  13. "I Gotta Donkey" (Allen) − 2:12
  14. "Can: You Can" (Malherbe) − 9:09
  15. "Confiture de Rhubarbier" (Pyle) − 1:18
  16. "Parkin Triumphant" (Clark) − 0:06
  17. "Longhaired Tablas" (Maitra) − 0:14
  18. "Éléphant la Tête" (Malherbe, Maitra) - 4:41
  19. "Mother's Gone" (Allen) − 1:12
  20. "Éléphant la Cuisse" (Malherbe, Clark) − 3:26
  21. "White Doves" (Viraj, Sunsinger) − 5:24
  22. "Gnomoutro" (Allen) − 0:27

Bonus trackEdit

"Goddess Invocation Om Riff" (Allen, Blake, Hillage, Howlett, Smyth)[1] − 12:58


  1. ^ a b c d e Nickson, Chris (2011). "Shapeshifter - Gong | AllMusic". Retrieved 24 June 2011.
  2. ^ a b Shapeshifter at the Gong website Retrieved 2010-11-28.
  3. ^ Gong on Facebook
  4. ^ Daevid Allen: Shapeshifter, product information on the companion book to Gong's album of the same name. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
  5. ^ a b Shapeshifter (Lightyear Entertainment 54200-2, 1997) at Discogs

External linksEdit