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Titanic - Titanic CD (album) cover




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4.01 | 32 ratings

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3 stars Thanks to the catchy, Santana-styled hit single 'Sultana', history has cast the heavy Anglo-Norwegian outfit Titanic - vocalist Roy Robinson, guitarist Janne Loseth, organist Kenny Aas, bassist Kjell Asperud and drummer John Lorck - as something of a one-hit-wonder; a quick glance at the group's career suggests otherwise. Formed in 1969, Titanic have actually enjoyed a pretty solid career, personified by an initial nine-year run of writing, recording and touring that produced six studio albums. Whilst many will remember Titanic for 'Sultana's jangly rhythms(which, incredibly, reached no.5 on the UK singles chart) Titanic also managed to issue a series of albums that mixed heavy rock power, psychedelic arrangements and bluesy organ riffs, a run initiated by 1970's powerful debut and eventually ended with the 1979 album 'Eye Of The Hurricane'. Though true commercial success always seemed to elude them, Titanic have always enjoyed a small-but-loyal international fanbase which has since seen them re-form twice, initially with 1991's cunningly-titled 'Lower The Atlantic', and then once again with 2008's 'Diamonds & Ashes'. However, for the true Titanic experience, it is this eponymous debut from 1970 that one must seek out. Originally issued by CBS before finally receiving a proper remastering for Repertoire Records excellent 2002 CD reissue, 'Titanic' ties bruisingly heavy guitar-and- organ interplay, pounding percussion, and yearning melodies into a hard 'n' bluesy acid-rock concoction brushed with a slight pop-sike hue. The chugging, seven-minute opener 'Searchin', the percussion-heavy assault of the album highlight 'Something On My Mind' and 'I See No Reason's imperious riffing are exactly what Titanic are about; powerful drums backing crushingly-heavy blues-based riffs and juicy organ runs. Add the gruff vocals of Englishman Roy Robinson and you have Titanic at their youthful best. Elsewhere, though, you will find surprises. The pretty, piano-led semi-ballad 'Mary Jane' with its orchestral backing and sentimental tone proves a real departure, making for a slightly awkward stylistic shift, whilst the Fab Four homage 'Cry For A Beatle' exhibits a light and hazy psychedelic-pop vibe. Most bizarre of all, however, is the big band-and-jazz fashioned bop-rock of 'Firewater', a brassy, two-and-a-half-minute sub-'Sultana' cut that sports a slight Chicago shade and a very abrupt ending. STEFAN TURNER, STOKE NEWINGTON, 2013

stefro | 3/5 |


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