Wheels Of Fire
Label: Polydor Records
On Cream's first two studio albums, Fresh Cream and Disraeli Gears, the trio was all about studio-bred brevity. It wasn't until 1968's Wheels of Fire, a double LP, that the group began to stretch out. Now mind you, it isn't a perfect album. The more flowery offerings, such as "Passing the Time" and "As You Said," haven't aged all that well. It's the live material found on the second disc that really stands out. "Toad" and "Spoonful," both of which break the 15-minute mark, are powerful jams that prove why Cream exerted such a massive influence on the development of hard rock and heavy metal.