Classic Rock Bottom

This week is a bit interesting since it's technically the fifth album in a series that has nothing to do with the other series, but it could also be the second in a series that has not need defined as a series until now but it's still really not a series since it hasn't been made official that it is a series. So, just stick with this being the fifth in that ongoing series.

What's even more interesting is that this week's selection, Golden Earring by Golden Earring, is not the original album picked for this week. However, after a couple of spins I moved the original album to a later date since this album (released in 1970, for those interested) is epic.  

This is the first album from Golden Earring which follows Eight Miles High from The Golden Earring which was also released in 1970. That album featured a killer 19 minute version of title track which was originally recorded by The Byrds. On that album you can see that the band was veering closer to hard rock.

Remember the post a few weeks back from Golden Earrings and how you didn't like it because you have no taste? Well, listen to how much the band changed in three years as you listen to this. You can also tell they mean business because they have long hair and suspenders. 

Picking the red track was pretty darn hard since they're all fine. One of the tracks sound like something from The Guess Who, take a guess which one and win absolutely nothing. review:

Golden Earring found the titular Dutch quartet forging the unique style that would later pay off in successful albums like Moontan and Cut. At this point, the group's sound is best described as post-psychedelic FM rock with a pronounced hard rock element (strong, gutsy guitar riffs about on this record -- just check out "The Loner" or "Back Home"). A lot of the songs have the atmosphere and elaborate arrangements associated with prog rock, but the group keeps the arrangements and the running times tight (the album's lengthiest song is just a little over six minutes). The most overtly artsy track on the album is "Big Tree, Blue Sea," an energetic and complex rock tune that includes Jethro Tull-style flute and packs a dizzying array of tempo and stylistic changes into a tune only half as long as the average prog tune. Other highlights on Golden Earring include "This Is the Time of the Year," a song whose effect arrangement juxtaposes quiet verses with spare instrumentation with dramatic chorus powered by a powerful guitar riff and "Back Home," a solid example of the kind of good-time rocker that would dominate Golden Earring's late-'70s albums. The big problem for the group at this juncture is the lyrics: "I'm Gonna Send My Pigeons to the Sky" is an earnest but muddled stab at protest music whose lyrics fail to say much of anything and the powerful riffing of "The Loner" is undone by cartoonish, melodramatic lyrics. However, the strong music and the band's tight musicianship make up for this problem and Golden Earring remains a tight, tuneful effort that is well worth a listen for Golden Earring's fans.

Golden Earring

1. Yellow And Blue
2. The Loner
3. This Is The Time Of The Year
4. Big Tree, Blue Sea
5. The Wall Of Dolls
6. Back Home
7. See See
8. I'm Going To Send My Pigeons To The Sky
9. As Long As The Wind Blows

Availability: Around $12 new or used.


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Yes, their hair did grow a lot. Wish the same could be said for their songwriting.

Just kidding. This is indeed better than the first impression they left on me, few weeks back.

The only problem with this post is that allamusing review. I wonder what mushroom did that guy smoke listening to this album. He called the lyrics of 'The Loner' cartoonish... Have he heard 'You Break My Heart'? Not that it's a great lyric, but let's give the credit where credit is due. Just because there is a flute on the album, it doesn't automatically mean it's in Jethro Tull style. It's like saying my Mazda has an engine and it looks exactly like the one in the Ferrari. And would someone please show this guy where the 33 1⁄3 switch is. Obviously he left the setting at 45 rpm, calling the playing tight, when it's so spacious in fact, you can drive a tractor between the strokes on the guitar. Completely unreliable.

As for my opinion; the red track is correct. Also liked the Loner and I didn't dislike the other songs either, so it's an overall improvement.

Allmusic knows Moontan and Cut are their best efforts, ever!

The opener definitely has a 60's hangover, with that flute, but that guitar distortion bridges the band into the 70's quite nicely.  Its like Jethro Tull meets, oh I don't know, who else was pumping out crunchy guitar licks in 1970?  Then thats who it sounds like....  But thankfully less like Tull, or I would have nodded off.  Now comes The Loner and more Tull-like songwrit zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz...

sorry about that.

The album diverges with track 3, a heavier mid-tempo'd rocker.  This is I like.  The production game is clearly stepped up and progressive, but then again of the few albums I've heard from these guys (at least the s-less version of the band) its a hallmark. Queue the flute!  The RED track is on...  And you may be onto something, another cool tune with a bit of prog going for it.

Actually got lost in listening to this, I quite like it!  See, See sends me out of that trance and back into Tull-mode.  I kinda wish they'd stayed way from the folk a bit and stayed on the straight ahead rock with prog-elements track and this woudl be near perfect!

Cherry picked track of the day has to be THIS IS THE TIME OF THE YEAR because of the crunchy guitars and its the track that made me pay attention.  Fine post sir!!

Just wait until next week when all your love will disappear. Tee hee!

Wow, I like the acoustic work on that opening track.  It's not a hard rocking opener, and there's something about that that I like. As soon as the second track starts I get a Uriah Heep vibe.  Very nice.  Cool riff.  

Basically, I'm liking this.  A ton more than the other one you posted.  It's a totally different sound, and I still think they sound like Uriah Heep.  Should've changed their name to Golden Heap.  But there's also a taste of Jethro Tull.  So Golden Heap of Jethro.

I'm Gonna Send My Pigeons To The Sky is a totally cool track.  Maybe my favorite here.  Yes, I like a great lyrical experience, and maybe this isn't that, but it's still a cool song.

This was a terrific post.  Best album you've posted lately.  More like this please. 


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