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Poco - 1973 Crazy Eyes

ALBUM: Crazy Eyes
SERIAL: KE 32354 (USA), EPC-65631 (UK)
YEAR: 1973


LINEUP: Rusty Young - guitars, vocals * Paul Cotton - guitars, vocals * Timothy B. Schmit - bass, vocals * George Grantham - drums, vocals
Guests: Chris Hillman - mandolin * Bill Graham - fiddle * Paul Harris - piano * Joe Lala - percussion

TRACK LISTING: 01 Blue Water * 02 Fools Gold * 03 Here We Go Again * 04 Brass Buttons * 05 A Right Along * 06 Crazy Eyes * 07 Magnolia * 08 Let's Dance Tonight


While The Eagles were boozin', snortin' and hobnobbing with Hollywood's beautiful people, Poco for the most part stayed out of the vice and fray of the 70's Southern California scene consistently releasing high quality country rock albums. 'Crazy Eyes' is one of their finest efforts which sadly would be the last featuring Richie Furay who was frustrated by Poco's inability to sell more records. He would move on to join ex- The Byrds Chris Hillman and J.D Souther in The Souther Hillman Furay Band, releasing two albums that ironically sold even less than Poco. Life is never fair.

The Songs
This is such a solid record that very few albums from the country rock genre can hold up to it. This is Americana at its very best conjuring up images of slow floating rivers, purple sunsets, and the Western spirit. No, there is nothing 'hokey' about the record and make no mistake this is a rock band, and clearly one that was not afraid to take chances. The title track is heavily orchestrated, featuring dobro and banjo and is one of the few attempts I can recall mixing country rock with progressive influences. A magical piece of music everyone interested in the genre should hear this at least once. Timothy B. Schmit gives us 'Here We Go Again', a fine ballad similar to some of his later work with The Eagles. The covers of Gram Parsons' 'Brass Buttons' and the stunningly beautiful J.J Cale original 'Magnolia' are worth the price of the disc by themselves, the later featuring superb pedal steel work from Rusty Young who after Furay's departure would lead the band to greater success, in particular 1978's 'Legend' album.

In Summary
Poco have long been a favourite here at Glory Daze and while many of their releases are less consistent than 'Crazy Eyes', they all are worth a listen. You won't find screaming guitars and over blown keyboard solos here, but you will find top notch songs and performances by one of America's finest bands.

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#1 | jefflynnefan on February 21 2010 08:58:32
I pulled this out today and gave it a few listens. 'Magnolia' still sounds as great as the first time I ever heard it! 'Heart of the Night', 'Spellbound' and 'Crazy Love' are great Poco songs but I still go back the this album.

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