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Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations) - Jesus Christ Superstar CD (album) cover

JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR

Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)

 

Various Genres

4.24 | 129 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

GruvanDahlman
Prog Reviewer
5 stars Musicals. Now there's a genre. Pompous and overblown. Doesn't that sound alot like progressive rock? In the case of ye olde Jesus Christ Superstar it couldn't be a more fitting description than that. I would not say, however, that it is a musical. For me, musicals are stories told through the musical medium, just like any concept album in the world of prog. I am not stating that prog and musicals are equals, simply that there are similarities. Jesus Christ is not, I say, a musical. Rather it is a supreme rock opera of huge proportions.

The birth of rock operas is debatable but this one, being released in the year of 1970, do belong to the first ones. Maybe Kinks was first. Or The Who. That is not the point. The point being that this opera is a seminal and awesome piece of progressive rock, bound together by the most cohesive pieces of music ever written. The theme, the last days of Christ, is also fantastic. No matter your religious beliefs it is a great story ande makes for a wide range of variety in moods, structures and psychological evaluations of all the concerned parties.

Each song is impressive in itself but the great thing is the way themes and songs are revisited and used again to great effect. For instance, "I don't know how to love him" is great sung by Mary Magdalene but dramatic and heart wrenching when Judas sings the same song. The angst portrayed vocally are moving, really.

The cast makes for great performances. Gillan makes a perfect Jesus, torn by his fate and destiny on the cross. Murray Head is fantastic as Judas and his vocals are really extraordinary acting through singing. The way he portrays Judas as torn between his destiny and beliefs, doubts and fears is truly wonderful to hear. I feel moved everytime he sings.

This edition, the first recording of many, is by far the best in my opinion. It is vibrant, alive and really raw, rough and hard rocking. A true masterpiece of early progressive concept rock. Easily five shining stars.

GruvanDahlman | 5/5 |

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