what Frank is listening to #11 – ATLANTA RHYTHM SECTION – Underdog – (Polydor) – 1979
Of course we all know the Atlanta Rhythm Section ("ARS") from op shop bins.
They are session musos who made good and they mined the same field as Lynyrd Skynyrd, Blackfoot, The Allman Brothers, The Marshall Tucker Band, Black Oak Arkansas and many other southern country blues boogie type bands though ARS are more laid back. Their earlier stuff was slightly more in the southern rock vein, but by the mid to late 1970s mainstream music tastes had changed – disco, ballads and general slickness was popular (in the mainstream) – and this album reflects that. There are a lot of ballads and country harmonies (much like "Firefall" and the "Pure Prairie League") and a lot of slickness. There is very little blues or boogies … here, they are a sort of like a southern country version of "The Eagles".
A lot of people like this album, but it doesn't do it for me … very few of the songs have hooks or melodies that are memorable, and none of them lift me up to where I belong, though there is a country laid back "groove" going on through the whole album which would be accentuated, no doubt, with pot.
Here's a review from a guy who is weird, he obviously has too much time on his hands (says me) … but good on him:
There are some better than the rest tracks:
- "Do it or Die" – a nice low key ballad …. an odd way to start an album.
- "While Time is Left" .. the last half of the song goes off into a crazy "baroque" harpsichord played on guitar thing.
- "Spooky" – the old Classics IV song.
The album was produced by Buddy Buie who produced (I think) just about all the ARS albums, and he put them together. He has also worked with ORoy rbison, Classics IV and has written about 300 songs and he co-wrote most of the songs on this album.
Oh .. I think the drummer Robert Nix is Don Nix's brother, and Don Nix is a legend … especially if you like your rock southern "fried" ( and I do …I have a couple of Don Nix LPs)
I aint keepin this one
(originally posted: 20/04/2009)