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Supertramp - Land Ho / Summer Romance  CD (album) cover

LAND HO / SUMMER ROMANCE

Supertramp

 

Crossover Prog

2.84 | 10 ratings

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patrickq
2 stars In 1974 Supertramp was poised to emerge as a top art-rock group, with Roger Hodgson providing the art and Rick Davies providing the rock in roughly equal parts. This non-album single, released ahead of Crime of the Century, is a prototype of the then- new Supertramp.

"Land Ho" is a bouncy Hodgson piece la "Dreamer." Compared to later Hodgson songs, the lyrics are two-dimensional, and the music is missing some of the oddness that will mark his future work. In particular, the bridge strikes me as out of place. It seems like the band and/or the producer recognized that something needed to be done to prevent the song from becoming monotonous, and a bridge was duly inserted. Anyway, Supertramp's songwriting was improving, as its following albums would demonstrate.

Davies contributes "Summer Romance." It's nice enough, but clearly b-side material. It's vintage Davies, kind of a less-funky Dr. John production, complete with backing singers and multi tracked sax. It, too, is a sign of Supertramp to come, presaging "Ain't Nobody But Me" and even (to my ears) "My Kind of Lady." And like "Land Ho," "Summer Romance" is a rough draft of the Supertramp to come.

For thirty years the "Land Ho"/"Summer Romance" vinyl single was the only release of either song, making it essential for Supertramp fans. It's now more of a curio, as both sides were released in 2005 on the double-CD Retrospectacle: the Supertramp Anthology, which is still in print and reasonably priced (as of 2019).

patrickq | 2/5 |

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