10cc: The Original Soundtrack (1975)

One hour with 10cc is like a day with any other band. So many different avenues are taken on The Original Soundtrack: languid ballads, crank rock and loopy stories. The result is indigestion of the senses. “Une Nuit A Paris” and “Brand New Day” are the sort of wanky stuff that made Godley and Creme a real bore sometimes, while the three Gouldman and Stewart tracks (or two of them anyway) offer welcome relief. The wondrous “I’m Not In Love” and the clever “Flying Junk” are highlights here, since I look to 10cc for left-of-center pop with unforgettable hooks. When the art and pop camps come together (“The Second Sitting For The Last Supper,” “Life Is A Minestrone”), the songs are agitated, slightly sugarcoated nonsense. Listening to this record, I can hear where a critical backlash was inevitable. Starting the record with the three-part “Une Nuit A Paris” is just so pretentious that you’ll either love the move or hate it. Closing the album with the loungey “The Film of My Love” is almost a bittersweet reminder of what could have been: clever pop music that twists stereotypes into humorous parodies. Some have suggested that “Une Nuit A Paris” is a parody of French music, but it ends up maligning the French in the process (I know, you’ll say, they’re used to it). It underscores a problem with 10cc’s parodies: they’re more mean-spirited than they need to be. “The Second Sitting For The Last Supper” is almost offensive; that their humor was never misinterpreted like Randy Newman represents a dodged rubber bullet indeed. As with How Dare You!, this is a difficult album; difficult in the way that a moody three-year-old can be difficult. I’d hold that all of albums from the original quartet are worth owning, but among them I might give The Original Soundtrack the lowest score.

Original LP Version
A1. Une Nuit A Paris (Kevin Godley/Lol Creme) (8:39)
I. One Night In Paris
II. The Same Night In Paris
III. Later The Same Night In Paris
A2. I’m Not In Love (Eric Stewart/Graham Gouldman) (6:04)
A3. Blackmail (Graham Gouldman/Eric Stewart) (4:55)
B1. The Second Sitting For The Last Supper (Eric Stewart/Lol Creme/Graham Gouldman/Kevin Godley) (4:23)
B2. Brand New Day (Kevin Godley/Lol Creme) (4:03)
B3. Flying Junk (Graham Gouldman/Eric Stewart) (4:10)
B4. Life Is A Minestrone (Lol Creme/Eric Stewart) (4:30)
B5. The Film of My Love (Kevin Godley/Lol Creme) (5:03)

CD reissue bonus tracks
9. Channel Swimmer (2:50)
10. Good News (3:48)

Japanese CD reissue bonus tracks (2011)
9. Life Is A Minestrone
10. Channel Swimmer
11. I’m Not In Love
12. Good News

The Players
Lol Creme (vocals, piano, vibes, percussion, backup vocals, organ, guitar, gizmo, violins, Moog, acoustic guitar, autoharp, lead vocal, mandolin), Kevin Godley (vocals, drums, timpani, percussion, Moog, backup vocals, lead vocal, marimba, bass drum, cellos, timbali, bongos), Graham Gouldman (vocals, bass, guitar, percussion, backup vocals, double bass, acoustic guitar, six string bass, autoharp, lead vocal, mandolin), Eric Stewart (lead vocals, vocals, guitar, steel guitar, electric piano, piano, organ, backup vocals, lead guitar, percussion). Produced by 10cc; engineered and mixed by Eric Stewart.

The Pictures
Sleeve design and photograph by Hipgnosis. Pencil drawings by Humphrey Ocean.

The Plastic
Released on elpee, cassette and 8-track on March 11, 1975 in the UK and South Africa (Mercury, 9102 500), the US (Mercury, SRM/MCR-4/MC-8-1-1029), Australia and New Zealand (Mercury, 6310 500) and Japan (Mercury, RJ-7001) with gatefold cover and lyrics insert; reached #4 on the UK charts and #15 on the US charts.

  1. Re-issued on elpee in 1978 in Japan (Mercury, BT-5180) with gatefold cover and lyrics insert.
  2. Re-packaged with Deceptive Bends on 2-for-1 compact disc in 1987 in Japan (Mercury, 33PD-351).
  3. Re-issued on compact disc in the US and Germany (Mercury, 830 776-2).
  4. Re-issued on compact disc in 1989 in Japan (Mercury, 23PD-113).
  5. Re-released on expanded, remastered compact disc in 1997 in the UK and Germany (Mercury, 532 964) with 2 bonus tracks.
  6. Re-issued on compact disc on September 26, 1997 in Japan (Mercury, PHCR-12516).
  7. Re-released on expanded, remastered compact disc on February 18, 1998 in Japan (Mercury, PHCR-4417) with 2 bonus tracks.
  8. Re-released on remastered compact disc in 1998 in the US (Mobile Fidelity, UDCD-729).
  9. Re-issued on 24k gold remastered compact disc in the US (DCC, GZS-1083).
  10. Re-issued on compact disc in 2001 in Japan (Mercury, UICY-9173).
  11. Re-issued on compact disc on July 21, 2005 in Japan (Imperial, TECI-21223).
  12. Re-issued on 200g vinyl elpee on October 10, 2007 in Japan (Universal, UIJY-9041).
  13. Re-issued on expanded super high material compact disc on January 23, 2008 (Universal, UICY-90778) with 2 bonus tracks.
  14. Re-issued on super audio compact disc on August 25, 2010 in Japan (Mercury, UIGY-9033).
  15. Re-released on expanded SHMCD on November 9, 2011 in Japan (Mercury, UICY-25051).
  16. Re-issued on remastered compact disc and SHMCD on October 30, 2013 in Japan (Mercury, UICY-40017/UICY-75892).
  17. Re-issued on SACD on November 26, 2014 in Japan (Mercury, UIGY-9611).

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