Ben Harper – Welcome To The Cruel World (1994/2016) [HDTracks FLAC 24bit/192kHz]

Ben Harper – Welcome To The Cruel World (1994/2016)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/192 kHz | Time – 50:41 minutes | 2 GB | Genre: Blues, Folk, Rock
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: HDTracks | Front Cover | © Virgin

“Welcome To The Cruel World” introduced Ben Harper, his voice, his songs and his trademark Weissenborn guitar, kicking off a long, acclaimed and multifaceted career. The songs are mainly acoustic and folk-tinged, a sound Harper would return to over the years. An impressive, thoroughly enjoyable first effort.

The full range of Ben Harper’s influences would not come to bear until later albums, but his debut, Welcome to the Cruel World, lays a strong foundation. ‘Like a King’ and ‘Take That Attitude to Your Grave’ burn with a political conviction rarely heard during the 1990s. ‘Forever’ has a tenderness which demonstrates Harper’s emotional range. Lackluster hippie jams that cultivated his early following may have served a purpose but feel fluffy by comparison when compared to the meatier tracks. Ben closes the album with a song that frequently closes his concerts, ‘I’ll Rise.’ This song, built around Maya Angelou’s 1979 poem ‘And Still I Rise,’ reminds one of art’s ability to pierce through society, self, and the soul.

01 – The Three Of Us
02 – Whipping Boy
03 – Breakin’ Down
04 – Don’t Take That Attitude To Your Grave
05 – Waiting On An Angel
06 – Mama’s Got A Girlfriend Now
07 – Forever
08 – Like A King
09 – Pleasure And Pain
10 – Walk Away
11 – How Many Miles Must We March
12 – Welcome To The Cruel World
13 – I’ll Rise

Produced by Ben Harper & J.P. Plunier. Engineered by Mikal Reid.
Recorded in 1994 at The Convent, London, U.K.