I know I'm gonna get a lot of crap for reviewing this album, but seriously, this is one of the best rock and roll album ever made! They played every song on the radio so often that most young people now don't see the genius in their music. But the fact is that even today, every song on Boston's debut album remains in heavy rotation on rock and roll stations, which suggest that these recordings may be timeless.
I was in third grade when I started paying attention to music, and one of the first songs that magically caught my ear was 'More Than A Feeling', the opening track on the album. It has great dynamics, starting very simply and softly with nothing more than an acoustic guitar and vocals before soaring into a heavily-layered canvas of rock glory. There's no other way to put it: Gorgeous! I was instantly hooked on their sound.
Once I got a copy of the record, I was equally impressed with the rest of it. 'Rock And Roll Band' is a Cinderella-like story with amazing solos. 'Hitch A Ride' has some of the most beautiful guitars that play out for the last couple minutes. 'Smokin' is definitely a favorite lyrically.
The secret ingredient of the music was the chemistry between the lead singer, Brad Delp, and the guitarist, Tom Scholz. Tom was an MIT engineering graduate who built a lot of his own equipment, which gave him a unique sound. Brad's angel-like voice was a fantastic compliment to a perfectionist like Tom. Almost all of the music on this first record was recorded by Tom Scholz ALONE (including drums, keys and bass), with Brad doing the layered vocals. This kind of multitrack recording (solo) wasn't very commonplace in 1976.
If you think you've heard Boston and aren't sure about my review, maybe give it another listen on a good stereo system. I think it stands the test of time and needs to be re-examined once in a while; I listen to it many times a year. A great song is still a great song no matter how many times it's been played.
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