Lyrics | Reissue Liner Notes | Artist Comments | Fan Reviews

September, 1973

Sweet Freedom cover

Overview - As the studio followup to Heep's two Magnum Opuses, Demons & Wizards and The Magician's Birthday, this album couldn't help but be overshadowed. It is an outstanding album in its own right, although it does not quite have the same feel as its two predecessors, probably due both to recording the album away from home for the first time in a lousy setting and to the lack of acoustic instruments used. Grade: A

1. Dreamer - Starts out promising enough with a great intro by Mick but once the verse begins, something about this song loses it for me. David's vocals at the end, however, are amazing as with each "Dreamer" he takes the second syllable up an additional half-step. Has to be heard to be believed. Grade: A-

2. Stealin' - On US FM radio, this is one of the two Heep songs they still play regularly (along with Easy Livin'). A definite classic. Grade: A+
note: There is a single edit version on the remastered album. It's better than most of the single edits, but I never listen to it.

3. One Day - Opens with some of Heep's best harmonies ever. David is in top form on this song, a Gypsy-type stomper with more subtlety. Grade: A

4. Sweet Freedom - This may be the most soulful song ever done with David. Gospel organ and harmonies throughout make this one of the best songs in Heep's vast catalog. The dynamics by both the band and David are done with great effect. Grade: A+

5. If I Had The Time - The one song that retains the feel of the previous two albums, this piece also contains some of Ken's finest lyrics. Soft, thoughtful verses contrast with classic Heep dramaticism on the choruses and bridge. Grade: A+

6. Seven Stars - Excellent rocker with a psychedelic twist. The lyrics get a little silly at times but the band plays loose and David's having a great time. Grade: A
note: The extended version on the remastered CD is definitely superior. I'd give the original album version an A- and in fact never play it anymore. The extended version is basically an added wild intro and an extended ending.

7. Circus - A song unique to Heep's catalog, this is one of the prettiest songs they ever did. An soft acoustic piece with a folksy arrangement, it shows off the wide range of styles that Heep successfully experimented with. How many bands have ever put songs as diverse as this, the hard rock of Stealin', and the gospel of Sweet Freedom all on one album and get it all to work?? Not many! Grade: A+

8. Pilgrim - This song is the "lost" Heep classic, a song that should be right up there with July Morning or Circle of Hands as an example of Heep at their very best. Very dramatic arrangement, with a powerful organ and harmony vocals. In fact, if there is such a thing as Heavy Metal Harmonies, this is it! Grade: A+

Sunshine - (Bonus track - 'B' side of Stealin') Great heavy opening with Mick's guitar and those wonderful swirling Leslie speakers of Ken's B-3. Although it was relegated to a 'B' side, it fits in quite nicely with the other tracks. Grade: A-

Lyrics | Reissue Liner Notes | Artist Comments | Fan Reviews

Previous album Next album

Content Copyright © 1997 Jay Pearson

LinkExchange Member Free Home Pages at GeoCities