Monday, May 25, 2009

Album of the Day #152: BLIND FAITH

Artist: Blind Faith

Title: Blind Faith
Label: Atco, Polydor
Year: 1969
Songs: Had To Cry Today*/Can't Find My Way Home*/Well All Right**/Presence Of The Lord***/Sea Of Joy*/Do What You Like^
Written by: *Steve Winwood, **Norman Petty, Buddy Holly, Jerry Allison & Joe Mauldin, ***Eric Clapton and ^Ginger Baker
Produced by: Jimmy Miller
Thoughts: For 42 minutes, these guys have a total shot to blow your mind, and while they take that shot, they end up serving a glass half-empty or half-full, depending on the way you look at it. If you look at the album as half-empty, you start by complaining about the useless Buddy Holly cover and you move onto the fact that the second side has just two songs: Winwood's worst of his bunch and Baker's rediculously indulgent "Do What You Like" which is hardly strong enough to sustain 15 minutes of playing time. There's also the fact that Rick Grech really isn't that great of a bass player and aside from his solo in "Do What You Like" (probably the best part of it), he really doesn't do much.
For the half-full people, all they need to say is that "Can't Find My Way Home" and "Presence of the Lord" are on this. These two songs are fantastic, particularly Winwood's "Can't Find My Way Home". His opener "Had To Cry Today" is pretty good, with Clapton's guitar making the announcement that you're gonna hear one hell of a record.
The problem is that it's not true. As I said before, the second side leaves much to be desired. True the album does reach the 42 minute mark and it is spectacularly produced by Jimmy Miller, but you can't help but feel that these guys tried to do the bare minimum....and the record company went along with it. They only complained about the album cover, but why not complain to them about the lack of material on the record? Sure, they knew it would sell like hotcakes (which it did), so they didn't complain and in the decade of excess, I suppose they were just allowing the trend of less-than-11-songs-per-album go by. Then, there's the insane belief that the group could actually tour on just 42 minutes of music. There are some things about the sixties that I'll never understand...and the logic behind Blind Faith is one of them.

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