domenica 10 marzo 2013

Blues Image - Blues Image & Red White & Blues Image 1969 - 1970


A minor hit following its release in early 1969, Blues Image's debut album is very much cut in the image of the British blues bands that inspired the group in the first place, without ever nodding slavishly toward their examples. Rather, the two drummer lineup, with its penchant for Latin and other esoteric breaks and rhythms, places Blues Image closer to a swampy Santana than Cream or Fleetwood Mac, with solid rockers like "(Do You Have) Something to Say," "Outside Was Night," and "Yesterday Could Be Today" also adding a healthy dose of psychedelia to the proceedings. Often overlooked in favor of the band's hit-packing second album, Blues Image is nevertheless a punchy, and thoroughly enjoyable set, loaded with a musical promise that would explode into day-glo prominence across the course of their sophomore set. In May of 1970, the Blues Image went Top Five and gold with the exquisite "Ride Captain Ride," besting the Top 25-showing of Grand Funk Railroad's sort-of sequel from September of that same year, the equally divine "Closer to Home." Three Dog Night/Steppenwolf producer Richard Podolor returns with his redoubtable engineer, Bill Cooper, for the third album by the group, Red White & Blues Image. But guitarist Mike Pinera has vanished for Iron Butterfly's Metamorphosis, replaced by Kent Henry -- who would later join Steppenwolf for 1971s For Ladies Only, produced and engineered, of course, by Richard Podolor and Bill Cooper -- the same team who worked on Iron Butterfly, as well as Three Dog Nights mega selling Naturally. Between these comings and goings Red White & Blues Image fell through the cracks. Sought after in collectors' circles, singer Dennis Correll seems to be reaching for that "All Right Now" vocal Free brought to the airwaves in September of 1970. Paul Rodgers he is not. And though the Blues Project and Electric Flag may not have enjoyed the profile a "Ride Captain Ride" gave to the group's previous outing, they did what this band was attempting to do: they made albums that could pull you in. Atlantic Records suggested "Rise Up," "Good Life," "Ain't No Rules in California," and "Behind Every Man" as the radio cuts, and "Rise Up" has its charm, maybe as an unholy marriage between Diana Ross' "Reach Out and Touch (Somebody's Hand)" from May 1970 and Moby Grape. One wants to like this disc, but it feels as much in transition as the guitar players roaming from Iron Butterfly to Steppenwolf. Interesting on the surface, but there's no smash single to propel the project -- leaving it to a small group of record collectors to keep the image more in focus than the 73 men who sailed out. . . Drummer Skip Konte and vocalist Correll try to make "Gass Lamps and Clay" happen with its two-minutes-and-thirty-nine seconds and endless "la la la la" vocals (maybe a dig at percussionist Joe Lala, and giving the disc some variety, but no Grammy. New guitarist Kent Henry does compose a gem with bassist Malcolm Jones, a four-minute-plus cut, "It Happens All the Time," which has a ragged Rolling Stones' feel in a Robbie Robertson form. A pity the rest of the album isn't dressed up in this flavor, because it is a wonderful direction and far and away the best track. allmusic.com

Blues Image 1969
1.Take Me to the Sunrise - 4:14
2.Leaving My Troubles Behind - 3:49
3.Outside Was Night - 3:56
4.In Front Behind You - 3:13
5.Lay Your Sweet Love on Me - 2:14
6.(Do You Have) Somethin' to Say - 3:58
7.Lazy Day Blues - 4:50
8.Yesterday Could Be Today - 2:10
9.Reality Does Not Inspire - 9:09

Red, White and Blues Image 1970
10.Rise Up - 4:16
11.Behind Every Man - 3:17
12.Gas Lamps and Clay - 2:39
13.Take Me Back - 3:33
14.It Happens All the Time - 4:01
15.Good Life - 3:35
16.It's the Truth - 3:42
17.Let's Take a Ride - 2:52
18.Ain't No Rules in California - 7:50

Blues Image :
Mike Pinera - Vocals, Guitar
Frank "Skip" Konte - Vocals, Piano, Organ
Joe Lala - Vocals, Drums, Percussion, Congas
Manuel Bertematti - Drums, Congas, Tumba
Malcom Jones - Bass
Dennis Correll - Vocals
Kent Henry - Guitar

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