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Climax Blues Band – A Lot Of Bottle (1970)

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Climax Blues Band – A Lot Of Bottle (1970)

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01. Country Hat - 1:56
02. Everyday - 2:23
03. Reap What I've Sowed - 4:35
04. Brief Case - 4:01
05. Alright Blue? - 2:56
06. Country Hat (reprise) - 1:15
07. Seventh Son - 6:49
08. Please Don't Help Me - 2:55
09. Morning Noon And Night - 2:33					play
10. Long Lovin' Man - 3:34
11. Louisiana Blues (McKinley Morganfield) - 5:18
12. Cut You Loose - 5:17
13. Lovin' Machine - 2:23						play

- Colin Cooper - vocals, saxes and harmonica
- Peter Haycock - vocals and guitars
- Derek Holt - vocals and bass
- Arthur Wood - keyboards
- Anton Farmer - keyboards
- George Newsome – drums


Produced by Chris Thomas, 1970's "A Lot of Bottle" wasn't a major change in direction from The Climax Blues Band's earlier releases. Seemingly like every other early-1970s English band, these guys appeared determined to underscore their credentials as authentic blues-rockers. That said, the thing that's always intrigued me about this outfit is their occasional willingness to embrace more conventional and rock conventions (check out the screaming rocker 'Reap What I've Sown' with one of the funniest lyrics I've ever heard - "drinking in bar my friends all around ; it's the smell of my money the way they found me"). Yeah, competitors like Fleetwood Mac, Keef Hartley, John Mayall, Savoy Brown, etc. also occasionally went commercial, but that tended to be later in their recording careers, Elsewhere keyboardist Anton 'Humpty' Farmer was brought in to supplement Arthur Wood, but at least to my ears, with the exception of some barrelhouse piano on 'Long Lovin' Man' and some Hammond on the closer 'Cut You Loose' most of his contributions were simply lost in the mix. --- rateyourmusic.com


This album starts out promisingly (and interestingly, and misleadingly) with a cool acoustic number, "Country Hat," before the amplification gets cranked up and a lot of subtlety goes out the window. Still, this is generally an exciting album, if not always an interesting one. The band plays hard enough on grinding, crunchy shouters like "Reap What I've Sowed" (which features a wondering, soaring solo by Peter Haycock, and a spellbinding performance by Derek Holt on bass), which also parallels Mountain's contemporary release "Mississippi Queen"; and they bring back in that oft-overlooked instrument, the saxophone (played by Colin Cooper), on "Brief Case." Much of the rest is on the bland side, " "Alright Blue?" being a tedious workout for the harmonica as lead instrument. A couple of Willie Dixon and Muddy Waters covers are more engaging than most of the originals that follow, until the pleasantly loose-limbed closer, "Cut You Loose." --- Bruce Eder

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Last Updated (Friday, 01 March 2013 22:15)


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