Kansas - Masque

Year of Release: 2001
Label: Legacy/Epic
Catalog Number: 85654
Format: CD
Total Time: 48:32:00

You can't even imagine the joy that I felt when, a few months ago, I took notice of the news that Kansas were going to re-release Masque, their almost "impossible to find" third album. For years I had hoped in this re-issue, but it seemed that the miracle always eluded me. But now the dream is reality, and with the CD jealously under my arm I can finally say that the joy has grown even bigger, because Masque turns out to be one of the many masterpieces that the band from Topeka has unleashed in its glorious career. Well, to be honest with you, the album doesn't start in the best way, 'cause the first track, "It Takes A Woman's Love," is clearly not on the same page with the beautiful songs full of strong vocal arrangements that Kansas are always able to create. However, we learn from the rich booklet that this was a radio single "amicably dictated" to the band by their manager of the time, Don Kirschner, and it shows, as it is a remote chapter of the album. In fact, from the hypnoticly slow "Two Cents Worth" on, the music lifts off, reaching the pinnacle with "Icarus," an incredible song that strengthens the position of Kansas amongst the leaders of seventies prog rock. After that, the vibrant ballad "All The World" shows to modern acts such as Transatlantic that they still have to learn a thing or two about progressive imagery, before the double attack of "Mysteries And Mayhem", with its baroque opening that transforms itself into a hard rock guitar riff, and "The Pinnacle" (here we go again!), an epic where the mighty Steve Walsh gives an outstanding interpretation that closes the album with fireworks (metaphorically) exploding everywhere. The icing on the cake is represented by two demo-versions of "Child Of Innocence" and "It's You", but even without those two I would have been satisfied to have the CD finally here ... well, make it satisfied and happy!

Originally released in 1975 on Kirshner/CBS (PZT-33806), recently reissued in 2008 by Sbme Special MKTS (7612074)

It Takes A Woman's Love (To Make A Man) / Two Cents Worth / Icarus-Borne On The Wings Of Steel / All the World / Child Of Innocence / It's You / Mysteries And Mayhem / The Pinnacle / Child Of Innocence (Rehearsal Recording, Previously Unreleased) / It's You (Demo Recording, Previously Unreleased)

Kerry Livgren - guitar, piano, synths
Steve Walsh - vocals, keys, synths
Rich Williams - guitar
Phil Ehart - drums
Robby Steinhardt - violin
Dave Hope - bass

Kansas (1974)
Song For America (1975)
Masque (1975/2001)
Leftoverture (1976/2001)
Point of Know Return (1977/1984/2002)
Two For The Show (1978)
Monolith (1979)
Audio Visions (1980)
Vinyl Confessions (1982)
Drastic Measures (1983)
The Best Of Kansas (1984)
Power (1986)
In The Spirit Of Things (1988)
Carry On (1990)
Live At The Whisky (1992)
Box Set (1994)
Freaks of Nature (1995)
Always Never The Same (1998)
King Biscuit Flower Hour Presents Kansas (1998)
Definitive Collection (1999)
Best Of Kansas (altered re-release) (1999)
Somewhere To Elsewhere (2000)
Live! Extended Versions (2000)
The Ultimate Kansas (2002)
Device-Voice-Drum (2002)
In Concert (2003)
Sail On: The 30th Anniversary Collection 1974-2004 (2004)
On The Other Side (2005)
Kansas: Extended Versions (2005)
Works In Progress (2006)
Super Hits (2007)
Discover Kansas (2007)
There's Know Place Like Home (2010)

Best Of Kansas Live (VHS) (1982)
Live At The Whisky (VHS) (1995)
Device Voice Drum (DVD) (2002)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin US

Added: August 31st 2001
Reviewer: Igor Italiani

Artist website: www.kansasband.com
Hits: 1157
Language: english


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