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Roger Hodgson - Rites of Passage CD (album) cover


Roger Hodgson

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Sean Trane
Prog Folk
2 stars Aside from the odd Supertramp live numbers, the real cornerstone is this 9 min. piece with the giant Terry Riley (for those interested in this master listen to A Rainbow in Curved Air or the superb Church Of Anthrax with John Cale) called Time Waits For Noone as it is just as beautiful and alike Even In The Quietest Moment. There is also a beautiful acoustic guitar number but other than that this is not a must.
Report this review (#26014)
Posted Friday, February 27, 2004 | Review Permalink
Easy Livin
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars Looking back

A rather strange album this one, in that it's a mixture of newer solo material by Roger, combined with live versions of tracks from his time with Supertramp which are sub-labelled "Rites of passage".

The Supertramp tracks such as "Take the long way home" are performed faithfully, sounding entirely familiar since Hodgson was the original vocalist on them. Others such as "In Jeopardy" from his first solo album "In the eye of the storm" could easily have been Supertramp numbers.

Of the newer material, the slower songs "Don't you wanna get high" and "Red lake" work best. The more up tempo numbers "Every trick in the book" and "Showdown" have a pop feel to them, they are in truth pretty average affairs which perhaps indicate that Hodgson's sense of adventure is waning.

Roger appears to be something of a recluse in musical terms these days, preferring to keep a low profile with occasional performances in his home town in the USA. With his wealth of quality material from his Supertramp days and early solo career, this album serves to show that by and large we must look to his past for his finest work.

Report this review (#26016)
Posted Thursday, February 10, 2005 | Review Permalink
Prog Folk Researcher
2 stars Roger Hodgson is a pretty melancholy guy, so it is not surprising that this is kind of a sad album. As opposed to some of his more memorable work though, I don't believe he intended these songs to be depressing. The sadness comes from listeners like me who fondly recall the emotional power of his more prolific days penning both giant pop hits and uncomfortably personal introspective tunes as the driving force behind Supertramp. On this live album there is an air of tired resignation, and not a whole lot of the intensity of albums like 'Crime of the Century', 'Even in the Quietest Moments', and the criminally underappreciated 'Famous Last Words'. Hodgson just seems to be going through the motions.

Most of the tracks here are new compositions, and they are all technically well-written, tastefully arranged, and enthusiastically received by the crowd. But aside from the occasional Supertramp hit ("Take the Long Way Home", "The Logical Song", and "Give a Little Bit"), most of them don't make any particular emotional connection, at least when listened to from a cold CD and not live in the auditorium where they were performed. Perhaps the concert setting was a bit more inspiring - let's hope so.

The closest Hodgson comes to recapturing past magic is on the lengthy and expansive "Time Waits for No One". This composition opens with quite a few of the trademarks characteristics of the better Hodgson songs - slow, brooding intro that builds a sense of anticipation with tense keyboards; glum and bleating brass; and languid vocals that are more expressive than they are actually articulate. But it never does really take off, and the net result is a musically intellectual exercise that doesn't have any really substantive message beyond the repetitive phrase "time waits for no one" (which we all already knew).

I will say that the Supertramp tunes are delivered with gusto, and are quite faithful to their original recordings. Hodgson seems to especially come alive for "Give a Little Bit" at the end, and I can imagine the spark in his eyes as he delivers it from the stage while reminiscing in his head about the setting in which this song became his trademark. "The Logical Song" is technically good, but a bit more subdued than I remembered it as a teenager. But maybe that's just me.

This was a worthwhile addition to my collection, but I can't say as I would go out of my way to recommend it to anyone except a hardcore Supertramp or Roger Hodgson fan. And since those fans most likely already have this album, I would have to say that it isn't particularly highly recommended at all. Too bad, because this guy is a shared national treasure who migrated from Britain to California at the height of his popularity, and seems to have never really left. No worries - we'll take care of him while he's here. But I can only hope that he manages to find his creative voice just once more before the time he obsesses about so often, slips by.


Report this review (#117912)
Posted Tuesday, April 10, 2007 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Roger Hodgson live recording from year 1997 is album mostly for Supertramp/Hodgson fans. There are some old great Supertramp songs, played not too far from original (John Helliwell participates on sax/voc as well). And there are some Hodgson solo songs, which usually are not at the same level as Supertramp's works, but often has some similar sounding.

Recording sound is far from great, and musicianship level is often only average. But there are few songs sounding really great. Having no new materials or unusual arrangements, this albums main target group is millions of Supertramp fans, still having the nostalgia to their band. For that listeners it is not band and even attractive album in some moments. For all other listeners it has not a big value, though.

Report this review (#266133)
Posted Sunday, February 14, 2010 | Review Permalink

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