I bet you’ve never listened Supertramp’s oft-overlooked and severely underrated 1974 record Crime of the Century. OK, I’m sure you’ve heard “Bloody Well Right” and “Dreamer” countless times. But when’s the last time you really sat down and listened to them?
I bet you’ve never listened Supertramp’s oft-overlooked and severely underrated 1974 record Crime of the Century. OK, I’m sure you’ve heard “Bloody Well Right” and “Dreamer” countless times. To be fair, many of the tracks from this LP have been mainstays in the daily rotation of terrestrial rock radio stations since its release. But when’s the last time you reallylistened to it? I’m talking about sitting down, focusing your attention and giving this seminal album the attention it deserves?
Over the past few months I can say – without hyperbole – that I’ve done just that at least two dozen times. Ever since we purchased the 180g vinyl reissue (remastered by Ray Staff at Air Studios in London), Crime of the Century quickly became the reference album of choice at Audio Den.
Side bar: The 2014 Ray Staff reissue doesn’t suffer from the maximalist, overly-aggressive mastering of which previous releases of Crime did. To the contrary, this latest incarnation was deftly assembled – its presentation is dynamic, spacious, delicate and downright shocking at times.
With every turntable set-up, new cartridge installation or phono preamplifier demonstration, you will invariably hear the intricately produced layers that crescendo over the first three minutes of “School” pour out from our first floor music room…
Soon to follow is the sound of footfalls as people race in to enjoy what remains of the first track. By the time the opening crack of “Bloody Well Right” strikes, the music room is filled with eager listeners, jockeying for a piece of the sweet spot.
This ritual is reimagined no matter the nature of the demonstration. Be it for an EAT C-Sharp or a Dr. Feickert Woodpecker turntable, an Ortofon Cadenza Black cartridge or a Primare R32 phono preamplifier. Pretty soon we’ll have to purchase a second copy of Crime. It will be worthwhile investment – seems like every time we cue it up, another piece of hardware walks out the front door.