Blod Sweat and Tears still moves my mojo!
S. Chandler | Sonoma, CA United States | 01/27/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"These are excellent musicians and with orchestrations, I could
listen to David Clayton Thomas all day every day. A great collection."
The Best BS&T Compliation by far...
Bruce D. Davis | Yorktown, VA | 11/02/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This 2-CD compilation of the music of Blood Sweat & Tears is far superior to their Greatest Hits. If you want a full retrospective of this influential Jazz Rock group (or just want a healthy dose of their best music), this is the 2 CD package for you.
The tracks follow the chronological order of the albums from which they were taken. The first CD leads off with an early unreleased instrumental track, "Refugee From Yuhupitz". This is followed by three tracks from the first album, "Child is Father to the Man". The influence of Al Kooper is present on: "I Can't Quit Her", "House In The Country", and "I Love You More Than You'll Ever Know".
The second album, the multi-platinum "Blood Sweat & Tears" is included almost in it's entirety (except for "Blues Part 2" and "Variations on a Theme by Eric Satie"). My one complaint here is that the tracks were not ordered as they appeared on the album. This section is followed by the unreleased track "Children of the Wind", not quite on a par with the material in the second album.
The first disk concludes with tracks from BS&T3. The Carole King penned "Hi-De-Ho" leads off this section followed by Lucretia MacEvil (including Lucretia's Reprise and the fantastic Lew Soloff trumpet solo which finishes during the fade with a high note you can't hear on the original album.) Another highlight is the 3-track set (from side 2) of "He's A Runner", "Something Coming On" and "40,000 Headmen". This is my favorite section of BS&T 3 - easily on a par with the previous album.
The second disk begins with BS&T 4 and the biggest hit from that album, "Go Down Gamblin'". Again the tracks do not follow the album order, but with BS&T 4 this doesn't seem to matter as much. There is "Lisa, Listen To Me", "Valentine's Day", "John the Baptist (Holy John)" and a true highlight, the Dixieland/Rock cut "Mama Gets High". However, one of the best tracks from BS&T4, "Redemption", was left off the compilation.
With the departure of David Clayton Thomas and other personnel changes, next up are 4 tracks from "New Blood", including the masterpiece "Snow Queen/Maiden Voyage". Another unreleased track "Time Remembered" occurs here.
The single track from "No Sweat" (an underrated album) is "Roller Coaster". I would have like to have seen at least the Lou Marini cut "Hip Pickles" here as well.
"Tell Me That I'm Wrong" is the sole representative of "Mirror Image" which was in fact the best cut on that album.
The return of David Clayton Thomas brought us the album "New City" which is represented here by the cover of the Beatles "Got to Get You Into My Life" - one of the best cuts. However, "Ride Captain Ride", "Naked Man" and the instrumental "No Show" should have been considered since "New City" was one of the better efforts of the later BS&T incarnation.
The album "More than Ever" is represented by the cut "You're the One". The CD finishes with "Mean Ole World" from a live album recorded in 1975 about the time "New City" was issued with a lineup that included David Clayton Thomas, Bobby Columby and Dave Bergeron.
More than matching the music in completeness are the liner notes contained in the accompanying booklet. Here is a multipage history of BS&T by Al Quaglieri going over in fine detail the origin, the rise, the personnel changes, the problems and the eventual fading of Blood Sweat & Tears. (He even mentions that little heard fact that BS&T performed in the rain at Day 2 of Woodstock.) Included is a complete discography and the personnel line-ups for each BS&T album to guide you through their various incartations. This booklet alone is worth the price of admission.
While it doesn't inlcude all the tracks I would have chosen, this CD set gives you an excellent retrospective of Blood Sweat & Tears; perhaps the most influential group in Jazz/Rock.