April 1, 1972: Canned Heat, Edgar Winter’s White Trash, The J. Geils Band, Alice Cooper, Elvis Presley

CANNED HEAT: Rockin’ With The King (UA UP 35348).
Surprisingly ancient-sounding slab of Rock ‘n’ Roll … and if you don’t already know who’s on piano and lead vocals, where have YOU been? (It’s Dickie Penniman, actually). Jazzy instrumental flip.

EDGAR WINTER’S WHITE TRASH: Keep Playin’ That Rock ‘n’ Roll (Epic EPC 7550).
Right on! Johnny’s brother keeps on rockin’, but in a more modern manner.

THE J. GEILS BAND: Looking For A Love (Atlantic K 10099).
Frantic teenage Punk Rock, slightly lacking in dynamics but quite good. Chicago-style harmonica flip.

ALICE COOPER: Be My Lover; You Drive Me Nervous (Warner Bros. K 16154).
The Krazy Gang strut their adolescent training-bra groupie stuff (the words are good). Noisier flip gets it on more.

ELVIS PRESLEY: Until It’s Time For You To Go (RCA 2188).
El seems to be relaxing like Perry Como, with sloppy slushy effect on Buffy Sainte-Marie’s now wishy-washy slowie. Tighten it up, El!

EARL SCRUGGS: Foggy Mountain Breakdown (CBS 7877).
While it doesn’t equal the original by Earl and his erstwhile partner Lester Flatt, this less nerve-jangling treatment of that famous banjo-pickin’ “Bonnie & Clyde” tune is still mighty fine.

JAN HOWARD with BILL ANDERSON: Someday We’ll Be Together (MCA MMU 1152).
So, it’s this weekend’s Country bonanza at Wembley which prompted last issue’s bumper C&W release review. Here, Motown (the Supremes oldie) goes Country, with interesting results, including typical recitation by Bill. Flipside, Jan solos on the familiar “Love Is Like A Spinning Wheel” and the doomy “Dallas You’ve Won“.

CONWAY TWITTY with LORETTA LYNN: After The Fire Is Gone (MCA MMU 1150).
Heartstrings-tugging weepy Country duetted slowie, with the keening Loretta coming out on top. Flipside, Harold solos on the love-lorn self-pitying “I Can’t See Me Without You” and the nastily gloating “I Wonder What She’ll Think About Me Leaving“. Undeniable value, these big hit-crammed MCA Country maxis.

JOAN BAEZ: Song Of Bangladesh; Prison Trilogy (Billy Rose) (A&M AMS 897).
Without other people’s troubles for subject matter, whatever would Joanie do? She gives her tonsils their usual airing on this disturbingly-worded slowie/bouncy coupling, the titles of which provide a general umbrella for a variety of ungroovy topics.

CARLY SIMON: Legend In Your Own Time; Julie Through The Glass (Elektra K 12043).
The beauteous thrush on her own Carole King-ish light slow throbber, which Britain’s Penny Lane has covered rather well too. Good sounds, and a very pretty quiet flip.

J. P. ROBINSON: George Jackson (Atlantic K 10149).
Slow Soul version of Bobby Zimmerman’s recently unsuccessful new “protest” song. It’s better than Bob’s and doesn’t contain that controversial use of the word “shit”, but do enough people over here care about U.S. political prisoners in the first place? Funky flip.

ROBERT JOHN: The Lion Sleeps Tonight (Atlantic K 10136).
Despite his updating (well, recreation) of the Tokens oldie being the best. I fear Robert will lose out to the British “Opportunity Knocks” cover version unless he gets an almighty plugging push.

BREAD: Everything I Own (Elektra K 12041).
Comes & goes slow Pop.

SAN REMO STRINGS: Reach Out I’ll Be There; Hungry For Love (Tamla Motown TMG 807).
Backing-track-type stomping instrumentals from the latter ’60s, with many fans. A depressing thought, but this is the most likely hit out of all this week’s fine releases.

DETROIT EMERALDS: You Want It, You Got It (Janus 6146007).
The fellas at Philips are doing sterling work for us R&B freaks (watch this space!), and this U.S. hit by the great “Do Me Right” group might hopefully hit for them. The rapidly plopping bongo rhythm is filled out by a surprisingly Reggae-ish stop/go bass and a regular as clockwork stomping backbeat, while the boys’ perfect timing and light harmonies give it double appeal to Soul Group Freaks and dancers both.

LUNAR FUNK: Mr. Penguin, Parts 1 & 2 (Bell 1225).
Sad to report the death of the great Linda Jones, really sad. Anyway, to cheer us up, this totally unrelated recent U.S. R&B hit instrumental (with friendly vocal interjections) is a fast, organ-based, hand-clappin’, hit-worthy gas.

THE DELFONICS: Tryin’ To Make A Fool Of Me (Bell 1215).
Another old and out of sequence U.S. hit, this sweet slowie is of course lovely but may have too much gently percussive arrangement for the general public.

WAR: Slippin’ Into Darkness; Nappy Head (UA UP 35327).
Snipped from War’s superb “All Day Music” LP (do check it out – its banded but continuous music makes it good late-nite material for dee-jays), this slinkily slow beater is somewhat overshadowed by the edited Latin-Rock flip about which our good “doctor” so rightly raved. But get the LP.

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