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King, Carole - 1983 Speeding Time

ARTIST: King, Carole
ALBUM: Speeding Time
LABEL: Atlantic
SERIAL: 7567-80118-2
YEAR: 1983
CD REISSUE: 2004, Wounded Bird, WOU 118


LINEUP: Carole King - lead & background vocals * Lee Ritenour, Danny Kortchmar - guitar * Russ Kunkel - drums * Robbie Kondor - synthesizers * Bob Glaub - bass * Bobbye Hall - percussion * Plas Johnson - sax

TRACK LISTING: 01 Computer Eyes * 02 One Small Voice * 03 Crying In The Rain * 04 Sacred Heart Of Stone * 05 Speeding Time * 06 Standin' On The Borderline * 07 So Ready For Love * 08 Chalice Borealis * 09 Dancing * 10 Alabaster Lady


This woman wrote some serious hits but is she worthy of inclusion here at Glory Daze? Let's take a look. From her Brill Building days and songwriting partnership with Gerry Goffin which produced the classic 'Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow' (anyone remember Dave Mason's 1978 version?) to the early '70s soft pop, multi-platinum monster 'Tapestry' and the string of hits that followed; Carole King has contributed enormously to American pop music. For this reviewer songs like 'It's Too Late' and 'Jazzman' feature prominently in my early musical upbringing but her records like that of cohorts James Taylor and Paul Simon who seemed to be cut from the same cloth, never really interested me enough to spend my hard-earned lawn cutting money. After all, there was way too much hard rock and prog to be devoured and I hardly needed to bother with an earth shoe wearing chick like King. I wanted to rock.

The Songs
That was until sometime in the late '90s when I picked up a cheaper than cheap cut-out of her 1983 album 'Speeding Time' although I don't remember what my motivation was. The 49 cent price tag perhaps? Maybe, but a look at its history reveals 'Speeding Time' didn't chart anytime, anywhere. A big Goose egg sales-wise and if you recall the 1980's were a notoriously difficult time for children of the '60s with the new synthesizer technologies and MTV not exactly meshing with their pie in the sky, hippy-dippy idealism. Record buyers had evolved, now had kids and families, turned into narcissistic 'yuppies' or just didn't care which is probably too bad considering there are some worthy songs on display. Nothing close to her prolific output ten years prior mind you, but engaging nonetheless. lead-off track 'Computer Eyes' brings King into the new digital age with a pleasant chorus and airy synth layering although she saves her best stuff for the second side with the wonderful 'So Ready For Love' which harks back to her early '70s heyday and 'Alabaster Lady' which follows a similar melodic line with an Asian feel in a progressive-styled framework.

In Summary
Despite the production and dated trappings of the era, 'Speeding Time' is still a soft rock album with a capital 'S'. It's nice, safe and a bit 'o nostalgia for an aging generation that still appreciates the art of songwriting as well as die-hard west coast fanatics who seem to lap up anything with the names Ritenour or Kortchmar printed on an inner sleeve.

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#1 | gdazegod on February 24 2013 13:49:53
Well if it's any consolation, Louise Goffin made it to this site a few years back, so I guess that counts as a sort of Carole King contribution.

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