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Articles Home » 1978 Articles » Ouray - 1978 Chrome On The Range
Ouray - 1978 Chrome On The Range

ALBUM: Chrome On The Range
LABEL: Taxi Records
YEAR: 1978


LINEUP: Frank Pirruccello - lead vocals, guitar, piano * Bo Pirruccello - vocals, pedal steel, leslie steel, guitar * 'Too Tall' Tom Peters - lead & background vocals, bass * Hap Harriman - vocals, lead guitar * Ted Rawlings - vocals, drums, percussion

TRACK LISTING: 01 Feeling Quite Alive * 02 Tricks That Are Traded * 03 Stronghold * 04 Star * 05 One Horse Town * 06 100 Years * 07 Too Tall To Boogie * 08 Leave For The Night

With a logo looking like an old Wyoming license plate and silver foil title, I found two definitions for Ouray. One is a soft cheese found in upstate New York, the second is an historic town in Southwest Colorado. You decide where this Chicago based Southern rock band got their name, but I'm not going with the cheese! The band existed for quite a few years playing around the Midwest and East Coast while releasing a second album 'Motor Dream' in 1981. I've yet to find a copy of that one, but from my experience when it comes to Southern rock, the genre's indie releases are oft times more interesting than their major label peers with Blackhorse and Cooder Browne as prime examples and Ouray's 'Chrome on the Range' right up there with the best of 'em.

The Songs
Like many Southern influenced bands, country rock is never but a chord away and Ouray is no exception to the rule. Pure Prairie League and Marshall Tucker Band come to mind on the spirited opener 'Feeling Quite Alive'. While the band knew a good tune, they weren't afraid to stretch out and that's the case here. Frank Pirruccello has a sweet voice close to Kenny Loggins at times which is refreshing and not a 'yee-hah' to be found anywhere. Some nice jazz influenced piano work shows up on 'Tricks That Are Traded' which I did not expect although 'Stronghold' and 'Star' are pretty much standard Southern fare. 'One Horse Town reminds me a lot of The Outlaws and '100 Years' comes close to the long forgotten American Flyer with an outstanding slice of homegrown country rock. Bassist 'Two Tall' Tom Peters gets a shot at 'Too Tall To Boogie'. Autobiographical maybe, but its nothing more than bar band rock and far from the strongest cut here. Much better is the closing 'Leave for the Night' with stylish guitar and again very much in the Marshall Tucker Band school which is a smart move in my book.

In Summary
Two in Ouray's membership have long since retired although Bo Pirruccello is still active in and around the Chicago area with his own guitar business while brother Frank has an entertainment law practice. 'Chrome On The Range' is a nice record and worth seeking out for fans of this style that seems to be resurging in popularity once again, especially in of all places - France, which seems to be flying the Confederate flag high these days. Will wonders never cease?

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