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Customer Review

on 18 March 2003
What can we really say about BOSTON (1976) that has not already been said before--That it's a great rock 'n' roll album; in fact, one of the greatest of all time? That it transformed the music forever by totally revolutionizing electric guitar technology? That both sides of the vinyl version ARE 'perfect album sides'? That it sounds even greater on CD? That it all sounds even more incredible on the 24k Gold Remastered Edition? That, at 15 million units sold & counting, it is still the biggest-selling debut rock release of all time? That Boston, as a band, could never really live up to it afterwards, despite some quality recordings over the years? It is all this, and much, much more. :)
Boston the band, and BOSTON the album, was Tom Scholz's brainchild. The story is all told in the CD liner notes (just as it was on the vinyl album backcover), so there's nothing more to add to this, except that his real genius was forming his Hard Rock/Heavy Metal band with such talented members: Lead singer Brad Delp, whose six-octave vocal range has rarely been matched since (even by himself) and fellow lead & rhythm guitarist Barry Goudreau, whose style worked so well in tandem with Scholz. Also, bassist Fran Sheehan (any relation to Billy Sheehan of Talas & Mr. Big?) and drummer Sib Hashian provided one tight rhythm section. This band was never better than on this one, glorious album.
Yes, I'm still kind of sick of "More Than A Feeling" which was a great tune that became way overplayed in the years that followed--but there's no denying that it is still a great song. "Peace Of Mind" is also such a 1976 classic, but it is the album's centerpiece, "Foreplay/Long Time" that remains the single most compelling track on the entire album. From the heavy bassed-up 'Foreplay' intro to the smooth, high-pitched Brad Delp vocals that follow (not to mention the incredible Scholz/Goudreau guitar solos), this song still gets my blood pumping and is still one of my 100 favorites of all time.
'Rock & Roll Band' still rocks, while very nicely summarizing Boston's rise to stardom. 'Smokin'' does just that; one of the greatest driving songs of all time, it features the most killer opening riff, and the best Hammond organ solo this side of Deep Purple. 'Hitch A Ride' is another classic; starting out with soft, acoustic guitars, it suddenly whips itself up into a magnetic frenzy of swirling electric guitars and keyboards at about the minute-and-a-half point, and then only gradually calms itself down to end with a masterful guitar solo. 'Something About You' is that 'Gotta have ya, have ya' song that we all remember as one of the FM staples after 'More Than A Feeling' had worn itself out of airplay. And, of course, the unforgettable album closer 'Let Me Take You Home Tonight' which, sadly, still does not do itself justice to this day; the sped-up final minute and a half always sounded out of place to me in contrast to the song's first three minutes. But the first three minutes are a magical acoustic/electric mix that shows off Boston's soft side.
This entire album is still one of the greatest 37 musical minutes you're likely to spend. BOSTON is simply one of the greatest rock'n'roll albums ever; it's one of those coveted 'desert island discs'. Buy it on CD--and just remember to turn it *up*!!!! MOST RECOMMENDED
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