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Supertramp - Crime of the Century CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

4.30 | 1715 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars Consistently brilliant, this album is the best example of catchy yet sophisticated pop-rock out there. And its prog leanings are more prominent then those groovy choruses will have you believe...

Supertramp is a band that most music enthusiasts will encounter at some point, and those that don't fall in love with the tunes at least regard them with the respect they deserve. Everything is so well written, the lyrics are intellegent but accessible, the compositions are unconventional but memorable, and the chops are nothing ground- breaking, but above average. 'Crime of the Century' epitomises all of these skills in the form of a breath-taking concept album.

'School', 'Dreamer', and especially 'Rudy' are my favourite tracks (they're probably the more prog-orientated ones too) but there isn't really a weak moment on the album, hence my rating. 'Asylum' and 'If Everyone was Listening' are perhaps not quite up to the standard of the other tracks, the former being a little too cheesey and soul- influenced, the latter just a mediocre composition. But even these add much to the flow of the record, and contribute to its principle themes. What's really attractive about 'Crime...' is the blend of consistency (in the lyrics and instruments) with diversity (the mood of each song, and the varying sections of epic, groovy, sad, rocking or theatrical qualities). Another almost unique bonus is the contrasting singers; we get two of them, and a big difference in range. Alternating between each song (and sometimes sharing parts) Hodgson and Davies perfectly compliment their own and each other's compositions. Perhaps the fact that both are extremely talented writers is why Supertramp had a 5 year period of almost continuous high-quality, with other pop bands peaking out or delivering hit and miss albums.

Personally, I view the concept of this much-discussed album to be based around the huge flaws and cons that exist in race and society, which are the result of humanity's own problems and weaknesses. Supertramp observe the imperfect world we live in, and quite rightly blame each and every one of us for it (hence, "crime of the century"...). The songs on this album reflect different aspects of this idea, culminating in the epic finale that is the title track. I think it can be viewed both as a linear story and as a collection of different angles on a theme. In any case, the music is exceptionally listenable.

'Crime of the Century' is essential to ANY music collection, not just a pop or prog one. It fulfils so many tastes, like a layered movie. Read all about their schemes and adventuring, it's well worth the fee...

thehallway | 5/5 |


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