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Supersister - To The Highest Bidder CD (album) cover




Canterbury Scene

4.24 | 224 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars Supersister - To the Highest Bidder (1971)

Among the earliest progressive rock groups we find the Zappa and Soft Machine influenced Dutch band Supersister, often listed under Canterbury because of its stylistic simularities. The band is however a conservatory band from The Hague. The young band, which recorded their debut in their teens (just look at the cover of 'Present from Nancy' 1970), led by keyboardist Robert Jan Stips has released three albums which I really like, this being the second and perhaps most advanced.

Supersister has a unique style you'll come to recognise instantly, without it being particularly consistent. Their finest compositions have the fast jazzy drums of Marco Vrolijk (often in odd time signatures), who always finds a way to get an exciting feel in the music. The keyboards and distorted organs often take the lead with fierce fast themes in which both darker and lighter atmospheres appear, yet whatever the emotional effect of the music is - it still sounds highly optimistic. Supersister is about joy. The Flute of Sacha van Geest takes another leading role during melodic pessages. Ron van Eck, on bassguitar, keeps up the pace and gets involved melodicly quite often. The dopey vocals of Robert Jan Stips add to the loose atmospheres and playfulness of the music.

'A Girl Named You' is classic up-tempo supersister; heavy, jazzy, rockin' and silly at times. 'No Tree will Grow' is symphonic ballad type track, quite unique in the Supersister discography. 'Energy (Out of the Future)' is a long track with all Supersister elements, perhaps a bit more avant-prog then most of their work. 'Higher' is a sympathetic, yet silly song. Just how a Supersister album should end.

Conclusion. This is among the best progressive rock records from seventies Netherlands and it should be listened to by everyone interested in Canterbury, eclectic prog and jazz-rock. Most of my favorite prog records are dead serious, but Supersister really managed to get the fun into prog. Four and a halve stars!

friso | 4/5 |


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