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Monday, October 13, 2008


320 KBPS

Kansas debut album was a slice of Americanized progressive rock that would set the stage for a career that would span over 30 years, and is still going strong. The mix of progressive rock, pop, and blues was the perfect combination. Kerry Livgren wrote most of the prog and Steve Walsh wrote the more straightforward rockers. Together they were a potent combination that gave Kansas a sound that was uniquely theirs. To this day there is no other band that sounds like Kansas. They concocted a style that has never really been duplicated. The debut album is divided into two halves. The first half contains more straight ahead rockers, like the single "Can I Tell You", a rousing cover of J.J. Cale's "Bringing Back From Mexico", the beautiful Steve Walsh ballad "Lonely Wind" the Livgren penned "Belexes". The second half of the album is all pure progressive rock; "Journey From Mariabronn", "The Pilgrimage", "Apercu" and the classic finale "Death Of Mother Nature Suite" which was used to close out the band's live shows for years. Any of the critics out there who don't think Kansas could stand up to their British progressive rock counterparts need to take a good listen to these last 4 tracks. They are simply stunning. The debut album is not the band's best, but it is a great one.
1. Can I Tell You
2. Bringing It Back
3. Lonely Wind
4. Belexes
5. Journey from Mariabronn
6. Pilgrimage
7. Apercu
8. Death of Mother Nature Suite
Bonus track
9. Bringing It Back [Live]


Anonymous said...

Dear Moodswing, great blog just like the older one. But I noticed that when I enter it, some strange pop-ups appear. Is possibly the clock service you have installed responsible for this?
Regards from Italy.

Mr Moodswings said...

I think the pop-up is a blogger thingy. I noticed it as well and don't know how to get rid of it.

JSLIII said...

The first Kansas song I ever heard was the single version of 'Carry On Wayward Son' off a K-Tel album I received for my 10th birthday. Wow. To my open, young mind it seemed sooo intense, and I've been a fan ever since. Sure, not every Kansas album rips (truthfully, the albums after Monolith (1979) and up to Somewhere To Elsewhere (2000) really aren't that good), but to this day I consider Kansas to be one of the--if not the--most underrated American bands of all time. Seriously, what American band was making albums as tight and progressive, both musically and lyrically, as Kansas was in the mid 1970s? Sure, ZZ Top was pumping out super-charged heavy blues and Aerosmith was on their way to classic status (aside: they're well-dead after 1982), but Kansas not only sounded smarter, they also sounded fresher. Original. Different. And, as you mention above, no other band has sounded quite like they do, before or since. Hell, they were singing about Earth abuse well-before it was cool (much like old Sabbath, in that sense), but backing it up with excellent, heavy, tricky music. Anyway, I'm with you: Kansas is easily one of the more viable progressive bands of the 1970's, but without the pretension of most.