Eric Clapton had a long history on guitar before he released his first, eponymous solo album in 1970. Until this point he had played with all sorts of blues-rock based groups such as The Yardbirds, All-Stars, The Bluesbreakers, The Powerhouse, and, most notably — with Cream and the supergroup Blind Faith.
In this album, however, Eric shifts his focus towards pop, and sadly so. This album does feature a couple of nice songs like After Midnight and, of course, Let it Rain, but the rest of the songs are pretty much tasteless, and fail to excite the mind of those who are more deeply accustomed with music. Eric‘s tremendous potential as a blues guitarist stays unrealised.
Why 4 stars out of five then? For one, the pop songs, in spite of lacking colour, are performed with quality and precision. But the main reason lies in the amazing outtakes, that were probably contrasting with the overall pop sound! Blues in “A” is a 10-minute jam that surpasses the level of all the other songs on the album, and Clapton comes to present his talent in an environment where he can do it the best way. Teasin’, which was made in collaboration with King Curtis, lasts only for 2 minutes, but is just as enjoyable, whereas the original version of Let it Rain, called She Rides, gives new perspective to the well known hit.
Eric Clapton — Blues in “A”
Eric Clapton — She Rides
Queen sure are a difficult band. For every part on their debut album that I loved, there was a part that I hated. A ratio of one poor song to one great piece is not a bad one, you might think, but I would have been relieved if that were the case, since the instances of enjoyment and disgust occurred multiple times within each of the songs. How am I supposed to deal with that? Doing All Right and Liar are both examples of pieces that start off the wrong foot, but correct their stance as they move on. Also, it is easy to understand how Queen got their attention and fame; their sound is unique and the musical skills of the band’s members are unquestionable, even though those two traits combined do not necessarily add up to good music.
This is the third album by Iron Butterfly, in which they continue to practice their art as the pioneers of heavy psych. In spite of the trademark distorted guitar and organs, the sound on this album is warm and gentle, yet might appear somewhat monotonous to some, since the songs are lacking hooks to be remembered by. Still, this is a more than fitting chill-out album suitable for a lazy mood, one that soothes your mind on the background while not asking for any unnecessary attention.