Hero and Heroine

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Hero and Heroine
Hero and heroine.jpg
Studio album by
Released1974
RecordedNovember 1973, Rosenberg Studios, Copenhagen
GenreProgressive rock[1]
Length39:36
LabelA&M, (UK)
ProducerDave Cousins, Tom Allom
Strawbs chronology
All Our Own Work
(1973)
Hero and Heroine
(1974)
Strawbs by Choice
(1974)
Singles from Hero and Heroine
Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic[2]4.5/5 stars

Hero and Heroine is the 6th studio album by English band Strawbs.

Background[edit]

After the tour supporting the previous album, Bursting at the Seams, there was an acrimonious split leaving only Dave Cousins and Dave Lambert to rebuild the band. John Hawken of The Nashville Teens and Renaissance on keyboards, Chas Cronk on bass and Rod Coombes on drums from Juicy Lucy and Stealers Wheel completed the line-up. The new line-up gelled very quickly and studio sessions were very productive. The album was released first in the US to a warm reception, and then in the UK where reviews were less positive. The album only reached number 35 on the UK Album Charts[3] and the band increasingly began to look to North America for a successful future.

The album, although still recognisably Strawbs, contains tracks with harsh "straight talking" lyrics, in contrast to the more lyrical approach shown on Bursting at the Seams. The music is more Gothic and doom-laden with washes of mellotron and guitar power chords, especially on the longer tracks.

All band members made writing contributions, notably Chas Cronk, with whom Cousins would write many songs on future albums.

Critical reception[edit]

Stephen Lambe, author of Citizens of Hope and Glory: The Story of Progressive Rock, has called it "their most prog album" and has identified John Hawken's Mellotron playing as "a particular highlight".[1] The album ranked number 44 in 50 Greatest Prog Rock Albums of All Time list of Rolling Stone magazine.[4]

Track listing[edit]

Side one
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Autumn"
  • I. "Heroine's Theme"
  • II. "Deep Summer Sleep"
  • III. "The Winter Long""
John Hawken, Dave Cousins8:27
2."Sad Young Man"Rod Coombes4:09
3."Just Love"Dave Lambert3:41
4."Shine on Silver Sun"Cousins2:46
Side two
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
5."Hero and Heroine"Cousins3:29
6."Midnight Sun"Chas Cronk, Cousins3:06
7."Out in the Cold"Cousins3:19
8."Round and Round"Cousins4:44
9."Lay a Little Light On Me"Cousins3:27
10."Hero's Theme"Lambert2:28

The following tracks did not feature on the original vinyl release, but were included as bonus tracks on the A&M reissue.

Bonus tracks
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
11."Still Small Voice"Cousins2:28
12."Lay a Little Light On Me (Early Version)"Cousins2:20

Personnel[edit]

Additional personnel
  • Claire Deniz – cello on "Midnight Sun"

Recording[edit]

  • Dave Cousins, Tom Allom – Producers
  • Tom Allom, Freddy Hansson – Engineers

Recorded at Rosenberg Studios, Copenhagen.[5]

Release history[edit]

Region Date Label Format Catalog Comment
United Kingdom April 1974 (1974-04) A&M stereo LP AMLH 63607
United States February 1974 (1974-02) A&M stereo LP SP 3607
Canada A&M CD VPCD 3607
Worldwide 1998 (1998) A&M CD 540 935-2 Remastered with bonus tracks
Japan 2002 (2002) A&M CD UICY-9216

Sources[edit]

  • Hero and Heroine at strawbsweb.co.uk
  • Hero and Heroine: CD 540 935-2 - sleeve notes

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Lambe, Stephen (2013). Citizens of Hope and Glory: The Story of Progressive Rock (Second ed.). The Hill, Stroud: Amberley Publishing. p. 58. ISBN 9781445607375. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
  2. ^ Hero and Heroine at AllMusic. Retrieved 2011-06-20.
  3. ^ UK Top 40 database Archived 2007-07-18 at WebCite. everyHit.com. retrieved December 16, 2008
  4. ^ "50 Greatest Prog Rock Albums of All Time". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 27 November 2016.
  5. ^ "Strawbs 73 to 75: JohnHawken.com". johnhawken.com. Retrieved 7 November 2016.