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Sutherland Brothers - 1977 Down To Earth
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on June 18 2007, In 1977 Articles , 0 Comments , 2350 Reads , Print

ARTIST: Sutherland Brothers, The
ALBUM: Down To Earth
YEAR: 1977


LINEUP: Iain Sutherland - vocals, guitars * Gavin Sutherland - vocals, guitars * Ray Flacke, Mick Grabham, Tim Renwick - guitars * Andy Pile, Rick Wills - bass * John 'Rabbit' Bundrick - keyboards * Willie Wilson - drums; Brian Bennett, John Shearer - percussion

TRACK LISTING: 01 One More Night With You * 02 Ice In The Fire * 03 Sunbird * 04 Harbour Light * 05 Dark Ship * 06 Situations * 07 Somebody's Fool * 08 Every Tear I Cry * 09 Fun On The Farm * 10 When I Say I Love You (The Pie

Hot on the heels of an American tour supporting the likes of Blue Oyster Cult, Styx, The Kinks and Starcastle, the Sutherland Brothers delivered, in my opinion one of the best albums of 1977 with 'Down To Earth'. Who are the Sutherland Brothers and why was this album so good? Some background, Iain and Gavin Sutherland joined forces in the late 60's and were a prominent fixtures on the English folk scene. Meeting up with another folk band - Quiver, they became the Sutherland Brothers & Quiver and signed to Island Records in 1970. Fame came quick when Rod Stewart covered 'Sailing', a Sutherland Brothers composition and million selling single for Stewart. As the 70's moved forward the Sutherland Brothers sound took more of a rock direction leaving their folk roots behind. By the time 'Down To Earth' was released, the group had dropped Quiver from their line-up and moniker, yet musical tastes were changing in their native UK and gigs came few and far between. Their final album; 1979's 'When The Night Comes Down' disappeared without a whimper and the group folded a short time later.

The Songs
A shame because with 'Down To Earth', the group finally hit a groove and the album as a whole still sounds fresh and original. Musical parallels can be drawn to Firefall and Orleans, but this is a British band comparable to Lindisfarne's later work and the excellent and equally underrated 'Deadlines' album by The Strawbs. 'One More Night with You' opens the album with a guitar riff reminiscent of Heart's 'Crazy for You', although the song is entirely different with dynamic keys and infectious chorus. 'Sunbird' is a gorgeous tune resembling Bread and Firefall, while 'Harbour Light' steals just a little bit from The Beatles and it works as one of the best songs on an album that has more high's than lows.

In Summary
Never released on CD, although a couple tracks from 'Down To Earth' appear as bonuses on the reissue of 'When The Night Comes Down' leaving me to believe that a proper reissue of the record is not in the cards anytime soon. Best to grab hold of a vinyl copy which is relatively easy to find. Again, one of the best records this vintage year had to offer and highly recommended!

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