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Kansas - Audio-Visions CD (album) cover

AUDIO-VISIONS

Kansas

 

Symphonic Prog

3.03 | 287 ratings

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Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
1 stars 1.5 stars really!!

After the all-too-even Monolith with no stand ?out tracks, Kansas approached the 80's with a very modern artwork that could only spell trouble to the classic-era fan, even if the classic logo is still used. Little did they (fans) know that this would be the last album with Walsh for quite a while too. The drive towards radio-friendly FM/AOR is definitely on with Audio-Visions as there are 10 tracks with 5 of them under the four minutes mark and two more just over it. Returning to the artwork, you get the feeling that they used the Journey sleeve-artiste, but also used the same studio and producer, because this AOR stuff is as insufferable, minis the awful Perry vocals.

The first few tracks are made from nervous/edgy hard-rocking rock, but there is no finesse and convey such bland messages in the lyrics that you're quite surprised that Livgren mentions "the City Of Gold" in Curtain Of Iron, the longest and closing track of the A-side. It is easily the best track of the album, but most likely one wouldn't sacrifice a 70's track in a trade for this one. The flipside fares no better with four atrocious Journey meets REO or Foreigner-type of FM rock tracks, and the better longer No One Together, the only track with a bit of finesse and instrumental interplay (but once again not really tradable with anything in classic albums). Nothing worth saving on this album, unless a completist.

I told you the fall from greatness was long and we have not touched bottom yet (for a few albums yet). but this was to be a nail into their coffin (artistically anyway), This is their first I would warn you against. I think it is no wonder Walsh left after this one, and trouble was at hand, when he would get replaced by that atrocious Elefante character, that would simply ruin the band's credibility soon after.

Sean Trane | 1/5 |

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