Sunday, October 11, 2009

Love - Four Sail

Love – Four Sail
Elektra, 1969
Acquired: Love Garden, Used, 2007
Price: $8

Ok, I lied. Arthur Lee didn't fire the other guys in the band; they all quit. Lee, however, decided to truck on and fulfill Love's obligation to Elektra. Really, this isn't a bad record. It's more guitar heavy, full of sick solos and what not, but it's not really Love. Or it's not the same band responsible for Forever Changes. I mean, just peep the awful guitar wanking on opener “August.” It's awful! It goes on and on and on and sounds terrible! Track 2, “Your Friend and Mine – Neil's Song,” is one of the lamest songs I've ever heard, especially coming from the dude who turned a Manfred Mann song into a goddamned punk rock jam. I mean, is this some sort of effort to become commercially viable? Although the line “You do nothin' and you land in jail” is incredibly prescient, given that Lee spent 7 years in jail for illegal firearm possession (which shows just how forgotten Love was by the 80s and 90s). “Robert Montgomery” is the exception to the guitar-solo rule, as that song is the fuckin' jam. However, that song mostly succeeds because it's a decent length at 3:34. Actually, that's why the whole B-side succeeds: the songs are a reasonable length. Opener “Dream” is forgettable, as is “Nothing.” “Talking in My Sleep” is really good, but mostly because it's under 3 minutes. The true gem here, of course, is “Always See Your Face,” which pretty much comes out of nowhere. On a record full of wanky guitar solos and machismo, the delicately plucked clean electric accented by a sad trombone and subdued lead guitar work makes the record. It's a soul song with blues lyrics. Even the guitar solo in the middle is perfectly placed, where the rest of the solos on this album feel really weird and forced. It's worth the price of admission alone, and was used with precision in Stephen Frears' adaptation of Nick Hornby's High Fidelity as an undercurrent to Rob Gordon's misery.

Now, for your enjoyment:

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