Sweet OK Supersister
Recorded at Paradiso Amsterdam, December 3rd 2000.
It was a very pleasant surprise when Supersister got together for a reunion tour. This was initiated by the organizers of Progfest who asked Supersister to play on the year 2000 edition of the festival. And so they played together for the first time since 1974. After Progfest they did a few more show in The Netherlands, like in Groningen (which I saw) and in Amsterdam (at Paradiso) where the show was recorded. In 2001 this was released on a double CD (Supersisterious) and now it is finally released as a DVD. So everyone who didn't have the chance to attend one of the reunion concerts can experience this. The first disc contains the concert, the second disc contains a documentary and archive material.
With the first track, Present From Nancy, it is magic. This is why I love the music of Supersister so much. It is great Canterbury music with it's jazzy and psychedelic leanings. They play great melodies with an ever changing rhythm. The fuzzy organ and the typical voice of Stips are of course very essential to the music, as is the beautiful flute playing by Van Geest. The great thing about this performance is that the band has so much fun in performing. And when you think of it, a part from Robert Stips who has been playing after the break up of Supersister, the other three musicians haven't been playing live since that moment, the performance is excellent. The songs you can both hear and see are from the first three albums. Included in the set is also the live favourite Wow, the single She Was Naked and the odd 6 Blauwe dwergen. In between the songs Stips explains the meaning of the songs like in the long introduction to WOW where he tells they wanted to write an intelligent song.
The second dvd contains a documentary of how they got together to perform at progfest. It contains footage of the first try out in Delft and the Progfest performance. There are lots of interviews with the band members, with the organisers of the festival an with the fans. Unfortunately there is not much archive material from Supersister. On this dvd they included an item from 1971 which was aired on Dutch television. It is a portrait of Supersister during rehearsal and travelling. Then there is a slide show of pictures from the band from 1965 to 1974. It ends with a long list of all the names and place that were involved with Supersister. And for those who don't speak Dutch, there a English subtitles.
This is a marvelous dvd. A great performance by one of the best canterbury styled bands. And it is still sad that Sacha van Geest died not long after the reunion.
(Dutch Progressive Rock of the Nineteen Seventies)
Last night I saw the Nits (I don't recall how
often I saw them) with Robert-Jan Stips. The merchandise-stand
had this new dvd from Supersister. Of course I had it signed by
Robert- Jan after the show. My favorite dutch band of all time
for the first time on dvd. After coming home I immediately
played it and saw what I missed late 2000 (I was hospitalized on
the day of the 013-show and had to stay in hospital for a few
days, so I also missed the Paradiso-gig).
Robert-Jan told me there were some technical problems in making the dvd, that's why it took some time before it could be released. The result is a must have for all fans. A great show from a band clearly having a good time playing together after all that time. Some of the best tracks from the ultimate Supersister line-up.
The bonus dvd has a VPRO-featurette which must be familiar for dutch fans, it has been on TV several times in the past. The progfest documentary is the key-feature of this dvd, because it was this festival that made the band reunite.
Sadly there will never be an encore, as it is said in the liner-notes: 3 will never feel as 4. Thanks Sacha for having been here (and for your kind words when I was in hospital)
This long awaited DVD release of Supersister's " Supersisterious" live concert release from a few years back should drive fans to seek out a "region free" DVD player in quick haste to enjoy this one over and over. After the first 20 minutes of this stunning live retrospective of the band's first 3 LPs, you feel you've eaten an aural feast - and there's more than an hour and a half of excellent sounds yet to experience. Supersister were a specimen unto itself, crafting wry, popish snippets of songs within a juicy, trippy, sonic landscape that included; wildly fluctuating time signatures, itchy sci-fi passages, deep soul-jazz grooves, bossanova,proto speed-metal ( without guitar!!!),catchy interwoven riffs and savory elements of total discord. It's hard to believe any band could tie all these elements seamlessly... and a group of Dutch teens at that!!!! I first heard about the band because my aunt in Holland had been sending me Dutch music mags thru the late 60s and early 70s although I didn't know the language. And she would send over records I'd ask for. I remember seeing a 4 star review of "Present From Nancy" in Muziek Expres. I was fascinated and so a copy was sent to along me.It gotta be one of the most "out of left field" revelations in 70's prog - and sounds just as great today... Supersister came about in the second wave of highly inventive Dutch rock. the first, with bands breaking the R&B (Pretty Things...) mode of things such as;Ro-d-ys,Sandy Coast, and Groep 1850 (whom Supersister owe at least a passing nod...).By 69/70, bands with instrumental muscle and inventiveness found alot of success. Among those , Solution, Earth & Fire, Focus gained fans in the States and around the world. Supersister though, have had a fervent, loyal, if scattered following even through the years passed their break-up in 1974. Progfest wooed them out of retirement and to LA at the turn of the Millenium. They then had a series of concert triumphs (in Holland...) and sadly their charismatic flute player, Sacha, died suddenly and it was all over. This DVD set is a testiment to the power of their music and fanbase. One DVD has a touching documentary on their re-union gig at Progfest peppered with adoring fans and excellent rehearsals. A triumph... It too, has a Dutch 11 minute documentary when the band has just released "Present From Nancy" and a lengthy photo retrospective set to music. The jewel of course is the DVD of the Amsterdam re-union gig from 2000. The band sails through their complex body of work like assassins - with all the wit, musicianship, dexterity that floored listeners upon hearing their debut LP in 1970.
(David Byers, Progarchives)