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Supertramp - The Story So Far... CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

2.58 | 21 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars I saw this video in record shops some years ago in the VHS format, but I never bought it until now, available as DVD.

As "The Story of Supertramp So Far" (until 1990, when the video was made), it really is very brief in the information given about the history of the band: about 12 minutes from their period with Roger Hodgson (1969-83), and about 15 minutes from Hodgson`s departure until the split of the band in 1988. It also has some incorrect information: the first two albums of the band were not recorded by the original line-up, as the narrator says. So, in comparison to other "Video Biographie"s of other bands ("Yesyears" from YES and "Genesis- an History" by Genesis, both released in 1991), this video of Supertramp has very little information, but, a very good thing is that they included 11 complete songs from two concerts filmed during their last tour with Hodgson in 1983 (Toronto and Munich), which is the best part of the video (and the YES and Genesis videos, in comparison, only showed fragments of songs!). In general, all songs are played well, with the help of two guest musicians, Fred Mandel (keyboards, guitar) and a young Scott Page (saxophones, flute, guitar, vocals; years later he also played with Pink Floyd between 1987 and 1989). But as the previous reviewer wrote, most of the time the cameras are focused on Hodgson, Davies and Helliwell, and less time on Siebenberg, Thomson, and the guest musicians. But, at last I could see an official and profesionally filmed concert video of the band (I think that some of these songs were available to be seen in some months ago; I remember seeing "Crime of the Century" there). There are some variations to previous live versions of these songs: Helliwell and Page share some sax solos; Page adds flute to one song; there are two guitars playing the solo in "Crime of the Century" (as in the original studio version). "Give a Little Bit" is played a bit faster than the studio version, and at last I could see a live version of "Goodbye Stranger" played with Hodgson. It is also good to see and hear Hodgson singing and playing his own songs in concert with Supertramp, and these live versions are, in my opinion, more "Genuine" than the live versions played by the band without Hodgson.

The DVD also includes five bonus video clips of the next songs:

-"My Kind of Lady": from the "...famous last words..." album, with the members of the band dressed as singers from the fifties. In this video is apparent for me that the split of Hodgson from the band was on the way, as the cameras are focused most of the time in Davies-Helliwell-Siebenberg-Thomson, and in the "backing band" scenes the four of them also appear, with Hodgson only briefly appearing playing the guitar.

-"Cannonball": a video clip of the edited single version of the song, with scenes of "Primitive Man and Woman" mixed with scenes of the band playing in an open air theatre (is it the Hollywood Bowl?).

-"Better Days": an interesting video clip with some political images and futuristic images of the world. Some politicians are also shown in this video.

-And two video clips from songs of the "Free as a Bird" album: "Free as a Bird" and "I`m Beggin` You". It seems that I`m one of the very few persons in this world who like this album, so I also liked both videoclips. The video for "Free as a Bird" shows the band doing a playback of the song with images of birds flying. "I^m Begging You" shows the members of the band filmed on the streets of one city (Los Angeles?) with some images of some women walking on the street too.

In conclusion, this is a good DVD, but maybe the main interest to release it for commercial purposes was to show the band playing in concert during 1983, more than being a long Documentary of the band with more detailed information of their history.So it works better as a concert video, in my opinion.

Guillermo | 3/5 |


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