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Triumph - 1979 Just A Game
ALBUM: Just A Game
CD REISSUE: 1993, MCA, MCAD31118
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:
LINEUP: Rik Emmett - vocals, guitars * Gil Moore - vocals, drums * Mike Levine - bass, keyboards
Guests: Laurie Delgrande, Mike Danna - keyboards * Beau David, Elaine Overholt, Gord Waszek, Colina Phillips, Rosie Levine - background vocals
TRACK LISTING: 01 Movin On * 02 Lay It On The Line * 03 Young Enough To Cry * 04 American Girls * 05 Just A Game * 06 Fantasy Serenade * 07 Hold On * 08 Suitcase Blues
The mid to late seventies saw the development of Canadian power trio Triumph. Having landed a couple of LP's a few years earlier, the band's third studio album in 1979 called 'Just A Game' was a move away from the initial progressive rock roots, to something a little more banal, blues based, hard rock and an experimentation between the worlds of contemporaries Led Zeppelin
. Not quite sure where to fit in, the band were still finding their feet during this phase, but it didn't stop them from bashing out some tunes just for the sake of it. There's only eight tracks here (seven if you discount the 1 minute 40 'Fantasy Serenade'), and at 35 minutes in total, it would go down as being one of their least interesting albums. If you ever owned the original LP, the foldout was a snakes and ladders type game, revolving around the fortunes of getting your band to the top of the rock n roll heap!
All games aside, the album opens with a whole load of crowd noise for 'Movin' On', a rocker that has more in keeping with the Styx
style, given the pumping bass lines, big choruses and Shaw/Young lead guitar work. Rik Emmett handles the lead vocal for the mid-tempo 'Lay It On The Line', probably one of the better tunes here, and reminiscent of their future work. The band rip into a blues outing called 'Young Enough To Cry' which is not particularly interesting. 'American Girls' is a sassy rocker with typical daft lyrics. You'd have to be living in Canada to understand what these guys are on about.. lol! Could the title track 'Just A Game' be the 'Ordinary Man' of this album? Nearly, but not quite as classy. Skipping though the acoustic interlude 'Fantasy Serenade', the band deliver the totally acoustic track 'Hold On'. This was one surprisingly ventured into the lower reaches of the US charts. The album finishes up with the Emmett jazz flavored 'Suitcase Blues', another track which doesn't do a lot of me, unless of course I was listening to a Michael Buble
or George Benson
The track listing for all three versions (LP, cassette, CD) were all shuffled around for some reason. Moving on beyond this album, the band released the ham-fisted 'Progressions Of Power' during 1980, an album that many fans aren't that fond of either, though I enjoy it, before breaking into the big leagues with 1981's 'Allied Forces'. A band with a colorful history, and a varied discography, and who in 2008/2009, are still a going concern, though we have yet to see the arrival of the comeback CD! Hopefully soon..
Related ArticlesTriumph - 1979 Just A GameTriumph - 1980 Progressions Of PowerTriumph - 1981 Allied ForcesTriumph - 1983 Never SurrenderTriumph - 1984 Thunder SevenTriumph - 1986 The Sport Of KingsTriumph - 1987 SurveillanceTriumph - 1992 Edge Of ExcessTriumph - 2004 A Night Of Triumph
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