The Magician's Birthday

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
The Magician's Birthday
Studio album by Uriah Heep
Released November 1972 (1972-11)
Recorded September–October 1972
Studio Lansdowne Studios, London
Length 37:34
Producer Gerry Bron
Uriah Heep chronology
Demons and Wizards
The Magician's Birthday
Sweet Freedom
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3/5 stars[1]
Robert Christgau B−[2]

The Magician's Birthday is the fifth album by British rock band Uriah Heep, released in 1972 by Bronze Records in the UK and Mercury Records in the US. The concept was "based loosely on a short story" written by Ken Hensley in June and July 1972.[3]

The original vinyl release was a gatefold sleeve, the front designed by Roger Dean. The inner fold had pictures of the band, with the album itself housed in a liner on which were printed the lyrics.

Two songs charted in the United States, "Blind Eye" (No. 97) and "Sweet Lorraine" (No. 91). "Spider Woman" reached No. 13 in Germany.

In a retrospective review, Sputnikmusic praised The Magician's Birthday, saying, "Though probably not as cohesive as it could be, it still offers plenty of highlights, earning its place among Heep's finest albums". Reviewer Daniel Dias singled out "Sunrise", noting that it was "a highlight in Heep's catalog and one of the band's finest progressive rock ballads".[4] AllMusic noted the album's prog elements as well, and said, "The Magician's Birthday never quite hits the consistent heights of Look at Yourself or Demons and Wizards but remains a solid listen for Uriah Heep fans".[5]

The Magician's Birthday was certified gold by the RIAA on 22 January 1973.[citation needed]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Ken Hensley except where noted.

Side 1
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Sunrise"   4:04
2. "Spider Woman" Mick Box, David Byron, Lee Kerslake, Gary Thain 2:25
3. "Blind Eye"   3:33
4. "Echoes in the Dark"   4:48
5. "Rain"   4:00
Side 2
No. Title Writer(s) Length
6. "Sweet Lorraine" Box, Byron, Thain 4:13
7. "Tales"   4:09
8. "The Magician's Birthday" Box, Hensley, Kerslake 10:21


The 2004 remastered version by Castle (UK) added nine previously unreleased bonus tracks:

2004 Bonus Tracks
No. Title Writer(s) Length
9. "Crystal Ball" (Out-take) Thain 4:08
10. "Silver White Man" (Vocal Out-take Version) Byron 3:40
11. "Proud Words on a Dusty Shelf" (Alternate Version)   3:24
12. "Echoes in the Dark" (Single Edit)   4:23
13. "Rain" (Single Edit)   3:16
14. "Happy Birthday" (The Magician's Birthday Single Edit)   4:44
15. "Sunrise" (Single Edit)   2:49
16. "Gary's Song" (Crystal Ball Alternate Version) Thain 4:25
17. "Silver White Man" (Instrumental Out-take) Byron 3:43


Credits adapted from album liner notes[3]

Additional personnel


  • Produced by Gerry Bron
  • Engineered by Peter Gallen
  • Assistant engineer – Ashley Howe


The 2004 remastered version by Castle (UK) as CMRCD771, team:

  • Remastering by Robert Corich
  • Remastering by Mike Brown
  • Assistant remastering – Pavel Salgado


Region Certification Certified units/Sales
United States (RIAA)[6] Gold 500,000^
Worldwide sales: 2,500,000

^shipments figures based on certification alone

Chart performance[edit]

Country (1972) Peak
Norway 5
Denmark 5[7]
Australia 10
Finland 1
United States 31
United Kingdom 28


  1. ^ AllMusic review
  2. ^ Robert Christgau review
  3. ^ a b c d The Magician's Birthday LP jacket (US Edition). Mercury Records. 1972. 
  4. ^
  5. ^ Donald A. Guarisco. "Uriah Heep The Magician's Birthday". AllMusic. 
  6. ^ "American album certifications – Uriah Heep – The Magician's Birthday". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH
  7. ^