Polydor (Germany), Maze (Canada)SERIAL:
2374 166, ML 8003YEAR:
1994, Polydor, 821 934-2COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: LINEUP:
Michael Sadler - vocals, keyboards, bass * Jim Gilmour - keyboards * Ian Crichton - guitars * Jim Crichton - keyboards, bass * Steve Negus - drumsTRACK LISTING:
01 Don't Be Late (Chapter Two) * 02 What's It Gonna Be? * 03 Time To Go * 04 Compromise * 05 Too Much To Lose (Chapter Seven) * 06 Help Me Out * 07 Someone Should * 08 Careful Where You StepWEBLINKS: www.saga-world.com
An institution in Canadian rock music, and funnily enough, a band more appreciated in Europe than they are in their homeland. In their early days, Saga's style of light pomp rock, veering on symphonic at times, found a home among proggie fans and melodic rockers alike, but it was difficult to pigeon hole them into any particular category due to their diversity. Very technical in approach, coupled with their science fiction and olde worlde themes made this a band which appealed to the technically minded (a.k.a geek).
For me personally, out of all their catalogue of discography, I much preferred their albums up to about 1985. This one in particular, their third installment 'Silent Knight' is a sweeping testament to keyboard based rock with clever time changes, atmospheric arrangements, neat keyboard arpeggios and solos, together with a crisp tight rhythm section. The album contains some of Saga's signature songs, such as the effortless and timeless quality of 'Don't Be Late' together with the precision accuracy of 'Careful Where You Step' and 'Too Much To Lose'. Awesome songs to listen to on a high quality stereo system. Along with the bouncy keyboard runs on 'Someone Should', the quirky eccentricity of 'Help Me Out' and the urgent drive of 'Whats It Gonna Be?', there is not too much to complain about with only eight songs of the highest quality. The others like 'Time To Go' and 'Compromise' add to the rich tapestry already laid down. Suffice to say this album is easily in my top 20 albums of the eighties decade.
I'm not quite sure what Paul Gross the producer had in mind when he got these boys into the studio, but I'm sure a few dozen cans of Molsons probably helped get the best out of them, as the end result is a wonderful album, very much ahead of its time and sounding as good today as it did back in 1980. Track this particular Saga album down at all costs.
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