Mr. Big


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Seppuku Review

by Richie Unterberger

Mr. Big (the British version, not to be confused with the American band of the same name) had already issued two albums and a bunch of singles before hooking up with producer Ian Hunter to record Seppuku in 1978. This was projected as the band's third album, but although two songs from the sessions ("Senora," which Hunter co-wrote, and "Death Boy," both included here) were released as a single, EMI did not release it. In 2001, it made its belated appearance on this CD. Hunter was quoted in Melody Maker in 1979 as follows about lead singer Dicken: "Dicken is England's Bruce Springsteen, if he can only get himself together." But not only was Dicken not remotely in the same league as Springsteen artistically, he (unlike, say, John Cafferty) did not sound remotely like him either. And nor does Mr. Big sound much like Mott the Hoople or Ian Hunter. To be blunt, this sounds far more like a minor-league, somewhat earthier Styx, and Dicken's high-pitched voice also bears some resemblance to Jon Anderson of Yes at times. The failure of this undistinguished mainstream arena prog-tinged '70s rock effort to reach the racks should not be bemoaned. Yet as usual, Angel Air does its best to puff up the music's importance, with an elaborate 20-page booklet containing lengthy liner notes by Dicken and a full discography.

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