“GROUP’S LATEST ALBUM ECHOES EARLY PROMISE”
BY MICHAEL JENSEN
APRIL 22, 1977
When Supertramp released “Crime of the Century” two-and-a-half years ago the group was earmarked for stardom. It’s unique sound, careful instrumentation, arrangements and production established it as a band that cared about its product.
The group has just completed its latest album, “Even in the Quietest Moments” and, the band is playing the Los Angeles Forum next Thursday night.
Although the material on ‘Quietest Moments’ lacks the originality and drive that “Crime of the Century” and “Crisis, What Crisis?” displayed, it is perhaps the band’s most cohesive work to date. Several songs on the LP show that the band is building on musical concepts.
It is using certain identifiable hooks from previous albums and modifying them into newer material. In a way the latest platter begins where “Crisis . . .” left off …but, there are a few twists.
In an interview with Rick Davies, John Helliwell and Bob Benberg at the A&M recording lot in Hollywood, the three men talked about the new project and what they hoped to accomplish with the album and their music, “You know we are not rich”, John Helliwell said “Everyone thinks that when you are a rock group . . . that everyone in the band is loaded with bucks. That isn’t so … at least in our case.” “We spend so much money on production of the album that we have to sell an incredible amount of albums to get any royalties.” He added, “Unfortunately, I personally feel like the days of work keep getting longer and longer.” Bob Benberg, the only American in the group and a native of Glendale, blurted in. “We like what we are doing. The band is getting along better than it has ever in the past.”
Supertramp’s new album makes it evident that the band is injecting personal experience into their material. Rick Davies wrote the potential single “Lover Boy?” and noted — “I wrote the song because I was inspired by advertisements in men’s magazines telling you how to pick up women. You know, you send away for it and it’s guaranteed not to fail. If you haven’t slept with at least five women in two weeks, you can get your money back. You just can’t stop the lover boy, he’s guaranteed.”
A slight sense of humor exists throughout the album, but it is immersed in the billowing symphonic structures. “I think the band is taking things as they come”, Benberg said. “Nobody is really planning anything definite. We all have our dreams. But it’s a bit difficult to turn your dreams into something material overnight.” “If I had to tell the public one thing”, Helliwell added, “It would be to buy the album. Also, that we would like to see Dale Robertson (of the Carpeteria commercials) do a commercial for us. Imagine him on the tube with that gruff voice of his . . . buy Supertramp.”
Supertramp is destined for great things. It’s unfortunate that this album isn’t as dynamic as previous efforts. Their show, so we hear, is better than ever and should prove to be an exciting evening next Thursday.
1971 Indelibly Stamped
1974 Crime of the Century
1975 Crisis? What Crisis?
1977 Even in the Quietest Moments
1979 Breakfast in America
1980 Paris (Live)
1982 Famous Last Words
1985 Brother Where you Bound
1987 free as a Bird
1988 Live 1988
1997 Some things Never Change
1999 It Was the Best of Times (Live)
2001 Is Everybody Listening? (Live)
2002 Slow Motion
2013 Live in Paris (DVD)