TITLE: Song for America
YEAR RELEASED: 1975
CHART ACTION: #57
SINGLES: Song for America
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: I really doubt it
LINEUP: Steve Walsh, Kerry Livgren, Robby Steinhardt, Rich Williams, Dave Hope, Phil Ehart
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Another bifurcated album from the band, with half being rockers and half being long prog songs. It doesn’t really work.
SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: Out of the gate, this is the tale of two bands making one album. “Down the Road” is a rocker, with only a proggy violin element (and vocals by Robby Steinhardt, not Steve Walsh), and then the ‘hit’ “Song for America” comes out – all 10 minutes of it.
The rest of the record is split as well. Two more prog songs (eight and twelve minutes), and two rockers (shorter at five minutes). Those songs don’t do anyone any justice, and “Incomudro – Hymn to the Atman” makes about as much sense as the title.
You could hear that something was coming together, as “Song for America” had definite moments, and within 18 months, the band would be well known. Just not for this one, and for good reason.
NOTES & MINUTIAE: The edited version of “Song for America” was three minutes, so yeah, there was proggy bloat.
IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: Yes, live cuts and the 45 version of the title track.
GRADE: C: This one doesn’t click for me. It’s doesn’t sound cohesive at all.