The Fabulous Rhinestones: Freewheelin’

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This is an odd pop/rock album from 1973. The title track would not be out-of-place on the cult classic Z rated movie, The Van  to be used only when Bobby’s customized Dodge van is cruising down one of the many (or same?) roads. Not at all a bad track, and plus it would’ve made The Van more watchable, instead of experiencing the full on pain and misery of making it to the end of the movie.

Track two, “Down To The City”, has a nice 70’s kind of downer vibe with a memorable chorus. Arp synthesizer was programmed by Joe Walsh. Drums, guitar, and sax create a full sounding song that I’d definitely put on a mix tape that is solely dedicated for night driving.

“Go With Change”, features a horn section that at times, sound like it could have been partially inspired  by Van Morrison’s “Domino”. It works and makes for a fine composition.

“What Becomes of Your Life”, starts out reminiscent of a Pink Floyd alternate track with the wobbly minor guitar lines, then crossed with The Little River Band’s song, “Reminiscing”.

Who wouldn’t like that?

Add in a harmonica solo by Toots Thielemans, and that’s the song. Hopefully the song received some radio play back in the day.

“Vicious Circle” the side’s last track is a funky-chugging sounding song that wouldn’t be out-of-place in an episode of the television show, WKRP in Cincinnati where Johnn Fever is in the booth jamming to some din. The sound is part Chicago, part Tower of Power complete with choice wah.

“Do It Like Ya’ Mean It” is another high energy horn laden track, whereas “Roots With You Girl”, slows the tempo down sans horns, and could have been a minor hit on the radio. Add in the nice bridge with strings, piano and synth for a nice distraction. The fade out is what makes the song shine, the jazzy piano block chords, flute, bubbly bass lines drifting in and out, swirling violin strings, and percussion. Perfect breeziness.

The next song, “Hurt Somebody”, is a medium tempo blues romp complete with a passionate and exremely competently played guitar solo.

The last song, an instrumental, “Whitecaps”, features some fierce echoey alto sax playing from David Sanborn  and or Marty Grebb. Electric piano while not up front in the mix, can be heard adding another dimension to the composition. Add in at times some heavily strung guitar jazz chords, which add to the lively overall color of the tune. All in all, the band chose the perfect way to end this album.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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