Triumph studio albums ranked
Canadian power trio Triumph often took a backseat to the other Canadian power trio, but the group carved out a commercially successful career thanks to their business savvy and work ethic.
From day one, Triumph concerts were visual spectacles filled with flashpots and state of the art lights and lasers. each tour featured a bigger and better Triumph sign, and each tour was bigger than the previous one until the original lineup's split in 1988.
In 1989 the band released "Classics" a compilation album that was a career retrospective and satisfied thier recording contract with MCA records. "Classics" is getting a makeover in conjunction with the release of a documentary about the band. The album will be released on colored vinyl and include a couple of bonus tracks.
This creates an opportune time to examine Triumph's catalog, minus the post Rik Emmett album "Edge of Excess."
You can click on any of the album's artwork to order your own copy on Amazon.
A list by Thom Jennings
9. progressions of power
There has to be an album at the bottom of the list, and this was a tough one to put there because it was the first Triumph album I owned. "Progressions" was the band's fourth studio album and there are some great Gil Moore classics like "Tear the Roof Off," "I Can Survive" and "I Live For the Weekend," Rik's contributions had dominated the previous album, and this is one of Gil's best in terms of drumming and vocals.
This was the original trio's last studio album and even though it contains some great material, at times it sound a little too polished to be a Triumph album. When the band reunited for two shows they didn't perform any material from "Surveillance" but "Carry on the Flame" was a highlight of Rik Emmett's early solo shows
Re-released as "In the Beginning," this album was a Canadian only release when it first dropped. For a first effort, "Triumph" is outstanding and captures the enthusiasm one would expect from a young band's first album. "Blinding Light Show" is a Triumph classic, and was a highlight of Triumph shows for years afterward.
6. rock & roll machine
Triumph's second studio album found the band growing as songwriters and finds Emmett emerging as a young guitar God with a ton of versatility. Even though some of the songs are long, they are all accessible and it became clear Triumph was on a great trajectory.
5.The Sport of kings
This is the album that marked the beginning of the end for Triumph, but that only became clear in retrospect. "Somebody's Out There" became the band's highest charting single, and both Gil and Rik have tons of strong material on the album, but it marked a shift away from the raw rock band towards a more polished sound.
4. never surrender
Tasked with following up their magnum opus "Allied Forces," this album lives up to the quality of " Allied Forces" without being a rehash of old songs. The band was still cranking out the tunes with vigor on this release, and the title cut and "When the Lights Go Down" were concert highlights.
This is a special album, and while it was not Triumph's most commercially successful it may have been their best in terms of musicianship. While some albums feel like they are driven by either Emmett or Moore, "Thunder Seven" is a cohesive sounding album that feels like a total band effort.
2.just a game
This was Triumph's breakthrough thanks to Emmett's contributions of "Lay it On the Line," "Hold On" and "Suitcase Blues." Gil Moore's vocals are outstanding on his contributions, "American Girls" and the great opening cut "Movin' On." This album was a crucial turning point for Triumph, as they began to make serious inroads on American rock radio.
It's a classic, plain and simple. Few bands are lucky enough to have all the pieces come together as well as Triumph did on "Allied Forces." there is not a bad note on this album and it was truly a "triumph" for Triumph. "Magic Power" went on to become the major concert highlight for both Triumph and later during Rik Emmett's solo career. If you only want one Triumph album you could easily forego the compilations and pick this one up.