Two for the Show

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Trooper's second album finds the band getting into the gist of developing radio-tailored rock & roll, thanks to the production help of Randy Bachman. Three of the album's tracks, "Two for the Show" (the obligatory ballad), the lighthearted "Santa Maria," and the roistering guitar-built "Boys in the Bright White Sports Car" all made the Canadian Top 40, verifying the fact that the bandmembers were advancing in their songwriting and in their ability to create marketable music. Even on the non-singles like "Ready" and "Whatcha Gonna Do About Me," it's evident that Bachman's focus was aimed at the merits of a strong hook and a gripping chorus, which in turn escalated Trooper into the same category as country mates like April Wine, Loverboy, and Prism. What's even more noticeable is the added energy coming from vocalist Ramon Maguire, especially on "Sports Car," and from the significant contributions of Frank Ludwig's keyboards, which help to give the band a more confident and professional sound, particularly in comparison to Trooper's self-titled debut album released a year prior. It was with Two for the Show that Trooper won Canadian fans over, even though they wouldn't win a Juno award (Canada's equivalent of a Grammy) for another four years.

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