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Supertramp - Supertramp CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.47 | 316 ratings

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4 stars Whenever I look at the artwork of this Supertramp's debut album, it reminds me one act of Peter Gabriel in performing Supper's Ready live after he sings: "A flower?". This artwork by Supertramp appeared in July 1970 while Genesis Foxtrot was sometime in 1972 ? was it because of this artwork then Peter Gabriel acted like a flower? Maybe it's just a coincidence.

By the late 1970s, the Supertramp's blend of keyboard-heavy progressive rock and pop flavor had yielded several hit singles and a few platinum LPs. In the late 1960s Dutch millionaire Stanley August Miesegaes heard Rick Davies in a band called the Joint. When that band broke up, Miesegaes offered to bankroll a band if Davies would handle the music. Davies placed classified ads in London newspapers for a band. The first response was from Roger Hodgson, who was to split songwriting and singing with Davies in Supertramp, the name they took from W.H. Davies' 1938 book, The Autobiography of a Supertramp. Supertramp is the self-titled debut album released in July 1970. It has sometimes been published under the title Now and Then. The album explored a more of progressive rock than their later works, and was their only album recorded without a saxophonist. It was not released in the US until late 1977. No wonder if people at the US did not recognize this as the debut album.

The music is progressive in texture and it's the only one on which drummer Bob Miller and guitarist Richard Palmer appeared, replaced by Kevin Currie and Frank Farrell for the Indelibly Stamped release which surfaced a year later. It has greater emphasis and attention granted to the keyboards and guitars than to the writing and to the overall effluence of the music. There are some excellent segments, such as the mixture of melody and subtlety that arises in "Words Unspoken," "Surely," and "Nothing to Show". There is also fusion that consumes throughout the 12 minutes of "Try Again" . Hodgson uses of cello, flageolet, and acoustic guitar and while both he and Davies had just recently formed solid collaboration, it was evident that their songwriting was going to be one of the band's strengths.

There's quality music hidden beneath the picture on this fine debut album. What a difference a couple of years makes! Rick Davies and Roger Hodgson would remain the only hold overs from the first album on later Supertramp classics. Hodgson handles the bulk of the lead vocals on the debut and he does so quite well. The bluesy style that distinguish the Davies sung pieces hasn't quite emerged yet with the sound firmly planted in the "classic" prog sound of the early 70's.

Peace on earth and mercy mild ? GW

Gatot | 4/5 |


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