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Kansas - Leftoverture CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.22 | 1016 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars An excellent classic rock album that morphs into a definite keeper prog record. I have to say that I don't find this to be the peak of Kansas' career--I would refer those interested to their first couple of albums. But although the highs aren't quite as high as in albums past, they are much more consistent and coherent here, and in my mind the music is diverse and creative enough to warrant inclusion to masterpiece, must-own status.

Carry On Wayward Son, The Wall, What's On My Mind. Here are the classic rockers, one of which would become a radio anthem staple and included in hundreds of generic classic rock compilations. The other two are quite good as well, and the highlight for both is hearing Walsh at his absolute vocal pea, at least in my opinion. Catchy and fun, Wayward Son is the only one that's a bit progressive.

Miracles Out of Nowhere. Let us commence with the prog! Slightly shifting time signatures, a great melody, a Gentle Giant-ish groove in the middle, and a killer upbeat finale: that's a great combination, which makes for a very memorable song. Just another case of Kansas not getting the respect they deserve.

Opus Insert, Questions of My Childhood. Two shorter tracks as a warm-up for the closing songs. The former has a circus-like middle (a mild ELP influence?) section that doesn't quite work, and the latter is a simplistic, bouncy tune that's enjoyable every time. Not too much substance here, but I never feel especially compelled to skip them.

Cheyenne Anthem. Native American history and ruins being an interest of mine, I am very happy that a band like Kansas is willing to give respectful attention to these issues. Moving and captivating, this is a good progressive tune, though not on par with Song for America.

Magnum Opus. Too bad their true magnum opus (opi?) had already been laid down on earlier albums, but this is no slouch either. Original all the way through, Livgren saves the best for last with a creepy keyboard build to an explosive keyboard/guitar volley for the finale. Again, Kansas show they know how to end an album with energy and style!

Great prog album, with some fine classic rock to boot. Just don't form your opinion of Kansas based solely on this album, because I think they have more to offer than we get here.

Flucktrot | 5/5 |


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