Theme Switcher
Switch to:

Notes about GDM Themes
Click to learn more about GDM themes


Not a member yet?
Click here to register.

Forgotten your password?
Request a new one here.
Site Stats
Album Reviews: 6860
Comments: 16620
Ratings: 4879
Forum Posts: 22005
Articles Hierarchy
Articles Home » 1977 Articles » Kansas - 1977 Point Of Know Return
Kansas - 1977 Point Of Know Return

ARTIST: Kansas
ALBUM: Point Of Know Return
LABEL: Kirshner
SERIAL: JZ 34929
YEAR: 1977
CD REISSUE: 1990, Kirshner, ZK 34929 * 2002, Legacy, EK 85387 (bonus, remastered)


LINEUP: Steve Walsh - vocals, keyboards * Kerry Livgren - guitars, keyboards * Robby Steinhardt - violins, vocals * Rich Williams - guitars * Dave Hope - bass * Phil Ehart - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Point Of Know Return * 02 Paradox * 03 The Spider * 04 Portrait (He Knew) * 05 Closet Chronicles * 06 Lightning's Hand * 07 Dust In The Wind * 08 Sparks Of The Tempest * 09 Nobody's Home * 10 Hopelessly Human


I've had this album in my collection since as far back as I can remember. It must've been the cover art of the boat falling off the end of the world that caught my eye. Apart from only hearing 'Carry On Wayward Son' on the radio (from 1976's 'Leftoverture' opus), and their (at the time) new ballad 'Dust In The Wind', I thought it was about time to invest in my first Kansas record, and this was it. I was all of 14 at the time! Certainly the violin induced symphonic rock was a far cry from what I was used to at the time, but perseverance paid off and my love affair with this band continues to this day. The early albums by this band were very progressive affairs, and it wasn't until the aforementioned 'Leftoverture' album that Kansas found themselves on the radio, whether by chance or by design. 'Carry On Wayward Son' did wonders for their profile, the album from whence it came went double platinum. 'Point Of Know Return' would become a critical album for them. The symphonic connection was still there, but the Epic/Kirshner label now wondered whether the band could turn up the heat a second time. They needn't have worried because for many (myself included), this album is perhaps their signature symphonic piece of work.

The Songs
'Point Of Know Return' leads off, the pleasant if unspectacular entry an entree for what is to come. Of more interest is the dramatic instrumentation of 'Paradox'. Some unusual and complex arrangements happening here, but nothing these boys can't handle. 'The Spider' is a well-named track, an instrumental which crawls its way along the symphonic tendrils left in its wake. It segues into one of the highlights on the album, the magnificent 'Portrait (He Knew)', the tale of an incredibly gifted man living in the wrong era. Perhaps part Nostradamus or Leonardo Da Vinci, they too will be impressed by the symphonic tribute. 'Closet Chronicles' is the epic track onboard. A slow intro, the band gradually work into it, the bass lines of Dave Hope stand out here, as he holds the song together brilliantly. Kansas literally gallop across the soundscape with 'Lightnings Hand', which is less interesting for me than the other tracks here. The best known track without doubt is the hit 'Dust In The Wind', the gentle acoustic/violin ballad a band staple for years to come. Notwithstanding, the other highlight for me is the cosmic tale of 'Nobodys Home', a galactic visitor returning to find they have all but disappeared (sound familiar?). 'Hopelessly Human' weaves many undulating threads throughout its course, some thoroughly absorbing passages and guitar/keyboard interplay. The song ends in a flurry of bells not unlike the ending of a Rush album!

In Summary
Admittedly you'll have to have an ear for this type of prog/symphonic rock. Not everyone 'gets it'. The album has been re-released several times throughout its history, the latest version has been given the remastering treatment too. I do admit to having owned this album for near on thirty years, and it astonishes me even more listening to it in a hi-fidelity environment, where I feel it comes into its own. As a consequence, 'Point Of Know Return' is an album which has become a very good friend of mine over the years.

All written content on this website is copyrighted.
Copying of material without permission is not permitted.

#1 | richardb on June 13 2008 09:16:18
I like this album a lot but it just 'Float my boat' like 'Masque' which is my favourite Kansas album. Perhaps it's just a little too whimsical in places..

Richard B
#2 | Nick C on August 31 2008 10:15:20
This was the first Kansas album I ever bought (and currently also the last as I've had to replace my Leftoverture/POKR double CD post haste as the Leftoverture CD of the set has become lodged in my car CD player...i fear the worst!).
Anyway Paradox was the first Kansas track I ever heard (apart from the ubiquitous Wayward Son) and I legged it out to get the album. Still love the band and as my purchasing habits prove it's an essential album that no collection can go without for any period of time Smile
#3 | trillion1999 on October 08 2011 21:28:30
I love Dust In The Wind and Closet Chronicles.Fantastic cover just as love
#4 | swazi on November 22 2011 22:59:24
One of the Prog Rock albums ever made that I consider to be a 'classic'!
#5 | super80boy on January 06 2014 03:26:09
This would be the second Kansas album I own now and from what I've researched, this was probably their definitive album where they seem to be hitting on all cylinders. Sure it has two massive cuts that are still in heavy rotation on classic rock radio stations, but there are a lot of satisfying progressive moves on this one. The urgent 'Lightning's Hand' has great arrangements as well as 'Sparks Of The Tempest'. I also really liked the melancholic 'Nobody's Home'. The album jacket artwork is of course very tasteful with the progressive fantasy themes.
#6 | dude24 on March 02 2016 18:21:54
Back when Steve Walsh was one of the best rock vocalists on the planet. Kansas is working on a new album; hopefully they get Kerry involved.
Post Comment
Please Login to Post a Comment.
Rating is available to Members only.

Please login or register to vote.

100% 100% 0% [No Votes]
95% 95% 0% [No Votes]
90% 90% 50% [1 Vote]
85% 85% 0% [No Votes]
80% 80% 50% [1 Vote]
75% 75% 0% [No Votes]
70% 70% 0% [No Votes]
65% 65% 0% [No Votes]
60% 60% 0% [No Votes]
55% 55% 0% [No Votes]
50% 50% 0% [No Votes]
45% 45% 0% [No Votes]
40% 40% 0% [No Votes]
35% 35% 0% [No Votes]
30% 30% 0% [No Votes]
25% 25% 0% [No Votes]
20% 20% 0% [No Votes]
15% 15% 0% [No Votes]
10% 10% 0% [No Votes]
Search DDG