Supertramp, Breakfast in America

My best friend had this album on eight-track, and it was a revelation; prior to that time we'd never even heard of them. Who was this band who named themselves after the itinerant homeless, and more to the point, where had they been all our lives? There's not a clinker anywhere, not a bad song to be found. We listened enraptured from start to finish, with "Gone Hollywood"'s incisive commentary on fickle stardom, "Logical Song"'s indictment of conformity and "Breakfast in America" deconstructing the social implications of what's on the menu. And permit me to wax lyrical on "The Long Way Home" — rapturous wistfulness over choices not taken and roads not explored becoming more and more relevant the older I get. No band ever fused pop and prog rock so artfully as this album did, and no collection of songs came off so vibrant, alive and intellectually stimulating. Our later explorations demonstrated that while they'd had some great albums before, they'd never reached this peak. And sadly, they never would again. (Content: no concerns.)