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Babe Ruth

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Babe Ruth Stealin' Home album cover
2.51 | 34 ratings | 7 reviews | 22% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 1975

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. It'll Happen In Time (5:33)
2. Winner Takes All (3:56)
3. Fascination (5:56)
4. 2 Sunsets (3:46)
5. Elusive (6:40)
6. Can You Feel It (4:13)
7. Say No More (2:41)
8. Caught At The Plate (2:54)
9. Tomorrow (Joining Of The Day) (5:02)

Total time 40:41

Line-up / Musicians

- Janita Haan / vocals, bells
- Bernie Marsden / guitar, vocals
- Steve Gurl / keyboards
- Dave Hewitt / bass
- Ed Spevock / drums, percussion

- The Hatfield Symphony Orchestra (4,9)
- Alan Shacklock / orchestral arranger & conductor (4,9)
- Chrisostomos Karanikis / percussion (3,5)

Releases information

LP Capitol Records ‎- ST-11451 (1975, UK)

CD Beat Goes On - BGOCD 491 (2000, UK) Together with "Stealin' Home" on one disc

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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BABE RUTH Stealin' Home ratings distribution

(34 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(22%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(22%)
Good, but non-essential (28%)
Collectors/fans only (25%)
Poor. Only for completionists (3%)

BABE RUTH Stealin' Home reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by ClemofNazareth
2 stars This would probably have been a more appealing album if I had heard it back when it first released. But that didn’t happen, as this was a band that had limited appeal on the coasts of the U.S., but was pretty much unknown in the Midwest. So my introduction was many years later and by then the band were long gone, as was this type of music.

Like the more elaborated self-titled album, this one features Juanita Haan on vocals, and once again she sounds like a melding of the range of Heart’s Annie Wilson and the spitfire bluesy delivery of Janis Joplin. Musically this is a blues rock album with keyboards, and the keyboards are the only reason I can think of that would get the band slapped with a prog label. I think that’s a mistaken label though; this is a very energetic and well-played blues rock album, but there’s absolutely nothing about it that warrants being considered progressive. If anything it was a bit dated when it released, with this kind of American hard rock having been largely supplanted on the airwaves by more ‘artsy’ rock bands like Styx, Journey, and Boston, as well as by a whole slew of pop poets like Boz Skaggs, Eric Carmen, Billy Joel, and the Boss. The time for this brand of American rock was in serious decline by 1975.

There are a handful of pretty decent tunes here despite the mainstream sound, particularly “Fascination” with Ms. Haan’s girl-done-wrong torrid vocal delivery; the ballad-like “2000 Sunsets”; and the awesome rapid-fire electric guitar riffs on “Tomorrow”.

But these are offset by weaker tracks like “Elusive” with its disco beat and confusing lyrics (Ms. Haan sings “I’m as graceful as a swallow” in a tone that sounds like she’s about to kick your ass); and “Caught at the Plate”, a muddy, poorly-mixed instrumental whose title tries too hard to make an association to the band’s clever name and album title.

Like I said, I might have taken to this album a bit if I’d heard it in 1975. But I didn’t, and it hasn’t aged all that well, so I think that two stars (for collectors and fans only) best describes it.


Review by Sean Trane
2 stars Fourth album and a review only because it is present on the 2 on 1 BGO release, to be truthful, this rather pompously-titled Stealin' Home actually made you wish someone broke into your house and stole this album (but that one alone ;-), so you wouldn't see it anymore. With only Haan and bassist Hewitt from the original album left, the group does not have much left but to head home (they can steal it for all I care;-) scoreless. Shacklock (their main composer) having left he was replaced by another Wild Turkey man, Benny Marsden (future Whitesnake and Gillan), but this was not to be any improvement.

Actually, the sad part is that Shacklock's absence is not even that noticeable (since Marsden is a seasoned veteran), the songwriting is very evenly spread out, with one remaining track still from the Shacklock-days, but for the first time, there are no covers. However, the least we can say is that BR is unwilling to shake their heavy riffing blues-rock away. The album is completely uninventive, uninspired and dare I say it: very boring. Only standing out slightly are Fascination and Elusive on the A-side and from the flipside only the piano interlude Caught At The Plate (striked out?) and the closer the dramatic Tomorrow(joining Of the Day) can shake us from our torpor.

Best avoided, this album presents the third and final strike. Not sure the baseball legend would've appreciated. The only two original members will leave the group soon after, but that will not prevent BR's "legend" to sink further with the atrocious Kid's Stuff (I'm serious her!! Check it out if you don't believe me) before finally folding having overstayed their welcome by over 30 months.

Review by Tarcisio Moura
3 stars 3,5 stars really. A good hard rock album with some strong keyboards, and prog overtones here and there. Babe Ruth never really fullfilled their promising start with the classic First Base LP. By the time StealinīHome was released their original guitarist and mastermind member Alan Shacklock had gone. It seems there were no hard feelings, since he is responsible for the orchestral arrangements on two songs. But the band was, as always, unable to keep a stable line up. Vocalist Janita Haan and bassist David Hewitt being the only original members left (and they would soon be out too). But they still manage to release a fine record, maybe their best since First Base, although the sound had changed quite a lot.

Shacklockīs replacement being Bernie Mardsen (ex Wild Turkey and future Whitesnake). Mardsen is a good guitarrist and decent second vocalist, but surely Shacklockīs void is one hard to fill in. The band had lost much of its initial impact by then. Which does not mean they were bad. In fact, they were still an outstanding group, with more than capable musicians and quite versatile songwriters themselves. StealinīHome is an excellent hard rock album, as long as you donīt compare it with their first release. SH has much more direction and personality than both previuous Lps Amar Caballero or Babe Ruth.

The tracklist is varied and the songs well crafted, with some creative arrangements, like the raggae tinged Can You Feel It, the beautiful ballad 2000 Sunsets and the funky Elusive (funky yes, not discotheque as some reviewer wrote) Also interesting is the instrumental Caught At The Plate, one of the few keyboards only songs that really works. And, of course, Janita Haanīs awesome perfomance (she is one of the most underrated great singers of all time).

Try it, if you like the style.

Review by Queen By-Tor
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars But will they make it to the plate?

Babe Ruth's fourth album saw the departure of guitar genius Alan Shacklock, the man who founded and wrote most of the band's good material over the course of their career. This is a huge loss, but as other reviewers have commented - it's not really that noticeable on this, their first album without him. Maybe this is because he even helped write a couple of the songs on the album. This album is really not as bad as it's current rating suggests, and if you like some very blues twinged rock music than you will certainly enjoy it a lot more than others might. If you're looking for a hard rock/prog album like their debut you're likely in the wrong place, but this is probably their most consistent album since they hit it big with their stunning debut album. Keys in some places on the album are what keep this one close to their more proggy roots, but the heavy Mexican flavor that hung around on their first two albums is very long gone. As mentioned before, the band has taken a turn into hard rock town only looking back into prog for moments at a time before moving on.

We start out with the strong It'll Happen In Time which shows the band in almost top form, Haan screaming out her vocals and Marsden (Shacklock's replacement) hammering out the riffs. Good track all around, if nothing too overly inventive. Most of the tracks are like this - they play it safe, but they do it well. Stealin' Home is a strange title in that case indeed, as the band seem to be sticking firmly to what they know. No complaints there of course, as mentioned before, this is likely the band's most consistent outing in a while. Catchy straightforward rock tunes like Winner Takes All and Say No More should keep your interest if you enjoy 70s hard rock, while other tracks closer tracks closer to prog such as the very well done Elusive and the fine closer Tomorrow see more soloing and more complex parts from the band. Tomorrow in particular has some very fine moments and makes for a very fine conclusion to the album.

Other songs on the album prove to be a bit on the softer side. The Haan penned 2000 Sunsets makes for a pleasant ending to the first side and Can You Feel It is a good lo-key rock tune. Caught At The Plate makes for a nice keyboard instrumental which is an easy listen. What's ultimately rewarding about this album when put up against their 2nd and 3rd albums is that this one doesn't have any monstrosities such as Cool Jerk on it, this one is good throughout.

While the album may not have any particularly incredible moments as their debut album was ripe with, or any mini epics like the excellent Amar Caballero, this one still makes for a solid blues rock album that's likely the most consistent album from the band since their start. Things would only get worse from here with the departure of Jenny Haan, but for now this is still a good album that's more for the fans. Fans of the band's first album should check this one out (with their expectations well in check) and fans of 70s hard rock with female vocalists may find this one appealing as well.

Review by ZowieZiggy
2 stars What can happen when the main song writer of a band is on the leave?

You'll know the answer when you will listen to this album. The fourth opus from Babe Ruth isn't really the type of album you would like to listen to. First of all, there is absolutely nothing prog in here (but their previous recordings were not a true example either).

This is just mainstream rock (Winner Takes All) or heavy blues (Fascination). The only magical link is the fantastic vocals from Janita. But this is no wonder. She has already brought her great skills to the disposal of this average band. Without her great vocals, there was hardly anything great coming out from their earlier releases. At least I feel so.

The bottom of the drawer is the totally disgusting (there are virtually no other words, sorry about this) disco oriented Elusive. Actually, it is wonderfully combined with a delectably boring reggae Can You Feel It. I can only feel a lot of boredom and pain while being confronted to such a mess. Press the next key twice to avoid these dreadful tracks.

It is almost a pleasure to listen to the straight-forward rock Say No More. Since the band is asking so nicely; I won't say anything more about this album. Still, this is a pity because the closing track is absolutely magnificent, wild, and poignant. The wonderful Janita is of course not alien to this factor but the huge guitar during Tomorrow is just incredible. How is this possible? To perform such a great track on such a weak album?

This track only is granting this album a two star rating. My advice is that you should press the next key eight times and only listen to this great song.

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars "Stealinī Home" is the 4th full-length studio album by UK hard rock act Babe Ruth. The album was released through Capitol Records in 1975. Main composer and guitarist Alan Shacklock left the band after the third self-titled album and I was really worried how "Stealinī Home" would sound without his contributions.

As it turns out "Stealinī Home" isnīt stylistically that far away from itīs predecessor. "Stealinī Home" is basically a rock/hard rock album and the music style isnīt completely unlike the music style of Wishbone Ash (without the twin guitar attack). A kind of softer hard rock style. The vocals by Jenny Haan sound like a female Geedy Lee (Rush). She is a very skilled singer with a great rock mama attitude. The only element on this album that links the music to the semi-progressive rock of the early releases is the inclusion of keyboards/synths on some tracks which gives the music a slight progressive touch, best examplified on the opening track "Itīll Happen In Time". I can appreciate most of the album but I especially enjoy the tracks that emphasize the harder rock side of the bandīs sound. When they slow things down my fascination drops. A track like "Can You Fell It" with itīs reggae rhythms is where I say stop.

The sound production is enjoyable, warm and pleasant. Overall "Stealinī Home" is a decent release by Babe Ruth even though I would listen to any of the first three studio albums before this one. There are simply parts/tracks on the album that are sub par to the rest of the material and therefore a 2.5 - 3 star (55%) rating is warranted.

Latest members reviews

2 stars BABE RUTH "Stealin' Home" is (in my humble opinion) an album which only figures in P A pages, because make part of band discography, due the music in "Stealin' Home" is far from something in terms of progressive-rock... in fact is only a reasonable hard-rock album. In attempt do not be so ... (read more)

Report this review (#914547) | Posted by maryes | Saturday, February 16, 2013 | Review Permanlink

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