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The Confidence Trick

by Hats Off Gentlemen It's Adequate

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krudz thumbnail
krudz This is an excellent album. I love the mix of styles and the underlying theme of it as a whole. Highly recommended. Favorite track: All Empires Fall.
Nickie Harte Kelly
Nickie Harte Kelly thumbnail
Nickie Harte Kelly This concept album explores variations on the theme of cognitive errors and the glorification of confidence mistaken for competence. Malcolm presents the music as a sort of hard sci-fi social observation and commentary. There are just three personnel here, utilizing guitars, synths/keys, bass and Chapman Stick, and flutes. this is a progressive thought-provoking musical treatise on why we should all be willing to admit that we might just be wrong about our preconceived notions Favorite track: Another Plague.
JC thumbnail
JC Si ‘Refuge’ tient le haut du panier, The Confidence Trick recèle d’autres pépites et se révèle un bel album dans son ensemble. Favorite track: Refuge.
Malcolm Galloway
Malcolm Galloway thumbnail
Malcolm Galloway Many thanks for all the support with this album :-) we are very grateful.
  • Streaming + Download

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    Plus - a selection of art related to the album, detailed album notes, PDF of the 24 page booklet, and a free download code for a bonus album of Malcolm Galloway's classical/minimalist music.
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    All the 1s and 0s of Hats Off Gentlemen It's Adequate The Confidence Trick lovingly crafted into CD format, including a 24 page booklet. Physical CD also includes access to streaming via Bandcamp and high quality downloads (WAV, FLAC, MP3, MP320).

    Artwork by Malcolm Galloway and Mark Gatland

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  • Full Digital Discography

    Get all 10 Hats Off Gentlemen It's Adequate releases available on Bandcamp and save 20%.

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality downloads of Burn The World, The Confidence Trick, Feeling Great, Nostalgia For Infinity, Ark, Out Of Mind, Stand Up b/w When I Was A Ship, Broken But Still Standing, and 2 more. , and , .

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When we say nothing - we speak When we say nothing - silence is a statement Nothing isn’t neutral Quiet is compliance When convenience prioritised Silence is a statement Silence isn’t neutral When silence covers violence Bitten tongues condemn us And silence is a statement Quiet isn’t neutral Quiet is compliance Silence is a statement We could stand together We could speak to each other Or we could keep quiet But silence is a statement
And when I find myself I find myself back where I started I let the same mistakes make me again Come from another place Another chance to write the story And every redrawn path leads back to the start Such misplaced confidence In my ability to learn from experience Such humility Against all the evidence of 50,000 years The technology changed But the principle’s the same The past as the draft for today I get the narrative What could possibly go wrong? I thought as I strapped myself in But the machine was so seductive I’ve been round, I’ve been round I’ve lost count I’m cycling time, changing lanes in my spiral Each fix in the past, trips me up The changes I make don’t work out the way I’d intended New problems to solve, dig me out from new holes And I’m, and I’m getting nowhere slowly
There were rumours there was an end of the line Somewhere where the single row of homes and shops and workspaces stop An end suggests an outside Something better left unspoken We don’t ask anymore A loop or a line? There’s only one way to know To walk to the end There's only one way to go Just keep walking till I find, find out if I’ll cross my path again I’d never met anyone who’s travelled What’s the point when the all blocks repeat? We used to burn the loopers or the liners but now we are more discreet I walked and walked and I saw Someone’s name scratched on the side of a door I didn’t recognise the name But I’ve been walking such a long time. I can’t quite remember what I used to be called
Perky Pat 06:03
I don’t remember World War Terminus When it started, who won? Who caused the dust that brought the birds down? Was it accident or design? World War Terminus The gap in history The gaping wasting never ending scar The forgotten reminder of How far we can go when we go too far World War Terminus Another war to end all war World War Terminus Nothing left to fight for Aggressive defence left a planet betrayed With a sickness It’s just the last world war again A blank screen in history World War Terminus Tabula rasa Wiper of slates Nullify states The elite escape The left behind wait I imagine we all suspect The other side started the war Whatever side of the planet we’re on When no-one knows who’s to blame, where does forgiveness lie? In a radioactive grave I can feel what it’s doing to me Where my mind used to be sharp Now thinking through fuzz I can almost feel the words in my head But they won’t come out My mind’s stuck, my mind’s stuck it’s not personal But World War Terminus Look what you’ve done to me Trapped on a dying world You and I The people who made it could afford to escape it People like us are stuck
The first faceless body The tidemark on the shore An anonymous hand clutches a toy Another faceless body Under the cold flat light The chalk cliff reflector, unveils the night Another plague, another threat dividing Unrecognised, unmade Another plague, invasion of the faceless The influx of the nameless Landing at the shore Another plague Vectors cross the border The panic spreads, on a plague siege island Another plague, another quarantine collapses Another plague, rear-guard fight at breaching borders Another plague, another face that’s disassembled All the pieces there, but the patterns gone, it spreads I dissect, I stain, the tissue’s secrets prove One of many, hidden away Searching for the parasite, but there’s nothing there... there’s nothing there First those with the least, the ones we’d hate to be Then it spread, stealing faces of those who look different It’s now so widespread, we’ve given up containment I can’t recognise my friends, they don’t recognise their children I’m scared of the mirror, I’m hiding from the image The blind spot in the picture, as my face disappears There was nothing to see in the skin and the bone No problem with the fragments, the problem with the whole The combined isn’t born in the world, it’s made inside I turn my attention to the underside The fusiform gyrus, yellowed and shrunken The distorted spindle of cortical ribbon The infection that summons The killers and eaters In the grey matter structures of facial recognition The pathology not in the face of the victims But deeply embedded in those who bear witness
Refuge 10:23
Interlude 04:04
Deep inside there’s a flaw That draws us towards the worst in us The worst of us It amplifies the certain The confident and cruel While the quiet and the grown up are ignored We’re quick to fall for The confidence trick To fool ourselves To let ourselves be used We’ve fallen once again For the confidence trick And we never learn We never learn We’re so quick, to lose ourselves to the confidence trick We want to believe We’re happy to be deceived We sell ourselves for nothing To the oldest trick The confident incompetent Narcissistic slaughter-men rise We fool ourselves that this can go on forever Keep trying to believe all the way to the slaughterhouse door The fool ourselves, the willing mark, for the confidence trick And we never seem to learn, we never learn We rush to throw ourselves under the boot of the confidence trick And we never seem to learn, we never learn, we never learn
Lava Lamprey 03:16
You can take, but you can’t keep Can’t hold forever under pressure stopping cracks spread Watch the shell break Watch the walls shake Watch the slaves bail As the empire fails Everyone born dies And everything made is left behind outside In the end Every state fails Every head falls Everything fades No one’s keeping time No one ends up alive You rise, and you’ll fall All empires fall Ascent is a temporary state It won’t last The peak will crumble The now will be passed Entropy wins Energy pales Every state fails Nothing is promised to be fair Entropy wins but it doesn’t care In the end Every state fails Every head falls Everything fades No one’s keeping time No one ends up alive You rise, and you’ll fall All empires fall
Cygnus 01:13
No-one could have guessed, except they did Wargame Cygnus brought to life, the gaps between the shrinking systems No-one listened when you tried to speak Preparations overpriced when death confined to abstract numbers We stripped the armour from our heroes, the stockpile cost too much We sent them to fight Armed with applause And it wasn’t enough


Prog Magazine Limelight featured artists Hats Off Gentlemen It's Adequate's 6th album, The Confidence Trick.

This album is a collection of songs around an overall theme of cognitive errors, particularly overconfidence, and our repeated failure to learn from history. One of the longest tracks on the album is an instrumental inspired by Malcolm’s great-grandmother's experiences of being hunted by the Nazis, and protected by some of the kindest people that our species is capable of producing. The language that was used to dehumanise populations before the Second World War is still used to dehumanise people today. We keep saying never again, and we keep making the same mistakes.

The album is broadly within the genre of progressive rock, but includes elements of alt-rock, contemporary classical music, minimalism, and electronic music.

Cover art copyright Malcolm Galloway. Booklet art copyright Malcolm Galloway and Mark Gatland.
Music copyright Glass Castle Recordings / Malcolm Galloway / Hats Off Gentlemen It's Adequate 2022.

Featured in the 2022 albums of the year selections of -
A Saucer-full of Prog
Emergent Unsigned Radio Show
Live From Progzilla Towers
Prog Explorations Plus
The Prog Mill
The Prog Doctor
Progressive Rock Central
Steve Beastie's Heavenly Homes
Velvet Thunder
Program.COM top 20
Prog Magazine (Russell Fairbrother)

"... an album of perfection... This is an amazing album. It is not fair to compare this to music of the past, but I have to compare this to a Genesis, Lamb Lies Down on Broadway moment, for this band. Between their last album, Nostalgia for Infinity and now, The Confidence Trick; this band is setting themselves apart from their peers in the UK. This music really is full of intelligent stories and songs that challenge you to think and hopefully change your ways. Like Genesis, which made my generation consider many deep concepts while we were at the same time fully entertained.

Please get this next chapter in the history of Hats Off Gentlemen. It is quite an adventure for the mind and ears" - Progressive Rock Central

"Absolutely superb - they’ve done it again. Absolutely phenomenal." The Lost Art - MMH Radio


released July 15, 2022

Written and performed by Malcolm Galloway and Mark Gatland (tracks 1, 4-7, 9-11), Malcolm Galloway, Mark Gatland and Kathryn Thomas (tracks 2, 3, 12), and Malcolm Galloway (track 13). Track 8 written by Malcolm Galloway and performed by Malcolm Galloway, Mark Gatland and Kathryn Thomas. (c) Glass Castle Recordings 2022, Malcolm Galloway, Mark Gatland, Kathryn Thomas
Album produced by Malcolm Galloway, co-produced by Mark Gatland and (track 12) Kathryn Thomas

Lyrics by Malcolm Galloway

Malcolm Galloway - vocals, lead guitar, keyboards/synths, programming.
Mark Gatland - bass guitar, additional and slide guitars, keyboards/synths, Chapman Stick, backing vocals
Kathryn Thomas - flute, backing vocals

Cover art by Malcolm Galloway, using Nightcafe AI assisted art creation software

Booklet art by Malcolm Galloway and Mark Gatland

Music copyright Glass Castle Recordings / Malcolm Galloway / Hats Off Gentlemen It's Adequate 2022


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Hats Off Gentlemen It's Adequate London, UK

Hats Off Gentlemen It's Adequate are Malcolm Galloway and Mark Gatland on their own or with Kathryn Thomas (flute).

They combine prog/alt-rock, funk, metal, ambient, contemporary classical, minimalist, and electronica elements, and often explore scientific themes.

Hard Rock Hell magazine -unlikely stars who stole the show’

Recommended by Steve Hackett

Beasties Rock Show's Album Of The Year
... more


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