JXS 7039 Phantom of the Night
Produced and Arranged by Dennis Mackay and Kayak
Released on 1978
Find it at GEMM
JXS 7039 cover
[high resolution photo]

T his is the first Kayak record I’ve ever listened to, and it won’t be the last. Going into this blindly as I did, my heart sank when I saw the band photo; they looked like Abba’s extended family (must be a palindromic problem). But I see with my ears when it comes to music, and the dutiful organ came back with a different report. It told me of a progressive pop band that could hold its own with the masters of that sometimes maligned genre: Supertramp, 10cc, ELO, Alan Parsons Project and the softer late ‘70s entries from Gentle Giant and Camel. [I’m listening to “Journey Through Time” right now (my favorite track on the album) and there’s almost a Hackettsian mad glee about the whole thing.] It’s strictly second-tier stuff, but if you’re already buying works by Tony Banks or Anthony Phillips, by all means venture into the world of Kayak. The elegiac “Phantom of the Night” or the tuneful “The Poet And The One Man Band” (trust me, it’s better than it sounds) are highlights, but Phantom of the Night is rarely less than engaging. The melodies from Ton Scherpenzeel are ingratiating, not brilliant; the guitar work from Johan Slager has a Latimer-like quality to it; Edward (he’s better than he sounds) Reekers has a stout but sympathetic voice. Put it all together and you’ve got a progressive pop band that resides somewhere between Genesis and Supertramp without touching them. I’m happy with this record right now. If I find that Kayak gets deeper, so much the better. If they don’t, they’ve still achieved something here.

JXS 7039 back cover JXS 7039 lyric sleeve
JXS 7039 back cover JXS 7039 lyric sleeve


  1. KEEP THE CHANGE    (Ton Scherpenzeel)    3:38
  2. WINNING WAYS    (words: Irene Linders/Ton Scherpenzeel, music: Ton Scherpenzeel)    3:35
  3. DAPHNE (LAUREL TREE)    (words: Irene Linders, music: Ton Scherpenzeel)    5:06
  4. JOURNEY THROUGH TIME    (words: Irene Linders, music: Ton Scherpenzeel)    3:24
  5. PHANTOM OF THE NIGHT    (words: Irene Linders/Ton Scherpenzeel, music: Ton Scherpenzeel)    5:03
  6. CRIME OF PASSION    (words: Irene Linders, music: Ton Scherpenzeel)    3:30
  7. THE POET AND THE ONE MAN BAND    (Ton Scherpenzeel)    4:10
  8. RUTHLESS QUEEN    (words: Irene Linders, music: Ton Scherpenzeel)    4:47
  9. NO MAN'S LAND    (Ton Scherpenzeel)    4:00
  10. FIRST SIGNS OF SPRING    (Ton Scherpenzeel)    3:39


KATHERINE LAPTHORN -- background vocals
IRENE LINDERS -- background vocals
EDWARD REEKERS -- lead vocals
TON SCHERPENZEEL -- keyboards, additional arrangements for string and brass
JOHAN SLAGER -- guitars
MAX WERNER -- drums, percussion, lead vocal on (9)
Frits Hirschland -- executive producer
John Tilly -- engineer
Jan-Fred Arendsen -- engineer
Elena Gutman, Marla Banks -- art direction/concept
Tom Drennon -- design & handlettering
William Sosin, Paul Natkin -- photography
John Laven/Tom Drennon Design -- logo illustration

return to KAYAK discography

NET 1978 Vertigo LP 6413 507 lyric insert
US 1979 Janus LP/CS JXS/JRCS 7039 lyric sleeve
ARG   Vertigo LP 6058 lyric insert
CAN 1979 Janus LP 9098-7039  


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