Idea - Polydor 1968
According to the fine background story told in the booklet, guiarist Melouney was getting increasingly frustrated by the concept of the group, giving him only occasional chances to plat real rock. Melouney would leave the group soon after the recordings of “Idea”.
The big heavily orchestered ballads always were a big part of the groupg, but the simpler band approach of “Horizontal” is also continued here with songs like “Such a Shame”, “Kitty Can”, “Indian Gin and Whisky Dry”, “Idea” and “Kliburn Towers”. Apart from “Such a Shame”, which is pretty ordinary, these songs are among the highlights of the album.
Once again two big hits are featured “I’ve Gotta Get a Message to You” and “I Started a Joke”. Both good songs, but also played very often ( too often - some would say ).
The closing track “Swan Song” is one of their finest ballads, but the album as a whole suffers a little from some weak tracks - especially “I’ve Decided to Join the Airforce” which is outright stupid.
On the bonus-disc there are some real gems. Not least the double A-side single “Jumbo”/”The Singer Sang His Song”. Among the previously unreleased songs “Bridges Crossing Rivers” should have been included on the original album. “Completely Unoriginal” sounds like a fun-thing created in the studio - quite interesting. “Gena’s Theme” is a nice instrumental. The alternate versions of “Idea” and “Kitty Can” are both great - though not radically different.