Thursday, June 9, 2011
Sτarcaѕtlε - S/T (1976/2011)
Got the recent remaster of this American prog. rock classic in the mail today, and damn is it a wonderful listen! Think Yes meets pre-80's America sprinkled with a bit of classic Styx and you'll have a good idea at how sumptuous these buggers sound. Although they were often labeled as a clone of Jon Anderson & co. by Rolling Stone and the like, the insult in retrospect seems rather silly - by the time this American band released their debut, Yes were well on their way to being on hiatus. On top of that, they'd release a certain shitty album known as Tormato before the 80's hit...an album that was easily eclipsed in quality by this "clone" band's entire body of work between '76 and '79. Oh the irony!
In my opinion, fans of catchy prog. rock and the whole "classic' rock thing shouldn't pass on this hot tamale, because its one of the best albums of the late 70's and, like vintage wine, has aged considerably better than some of their contemporaries. Opening 10-minute cruncher 'Lady Of The Lake' in particular is quite the ear catch - the vocal harmonies are some of the best in the history of rock canon.