1972 Case File #94.

The Flying Burrito Brothers, Last of the Red Hot Burritos

File Between: The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and Poco

Comments: The Flying Burrito Brothers put out one great album and one okay album, and then Gram Parsons left and there was really no point in going on, but Chris Hillman did, and this is the last gasp of that band, a live album with plentiful studio overdubs that sometimes make it feel like the crowd noise, not the crystal-clear instrumentation, is what’s being dropped in after the fact. Neither Hillman nor Ricky Roberts is a strong singer — certainly not on Parsons’ level — and while the playing is proficient the songs are formless and the banter excruciating. From being the first, foundational country-rock band to being a barely-competent country-rock band in just four short years must have taken a lot of drugs and self-delusion; but the band really only comes to life in instrumental passages, where they get to display the chops that listening to thousands of Bill Monroe, Buck Owens, and Allman Brothers records had given them. The bluegrass sequence at the end of the first side is probably the record’s highlight.

A Keeper? I think I’ve complained before about live albums. This one is no better or worse than the average, and all the moments of brilliance sound studio-overdubbed.

Vinyl Rip: High Fashion Queen

One Thought on “1972 Case File #94.

  1. OK but so this just happened to be the top post and my response has got nothing to do with the Burrito Brothers because, well, who cares so much?, but I wanted to say that whoever you are, you’ve got ears after my own heart. Or something like that.

    Thanks for reminding me of some things, introducing me to some things, pissing me off for being wrong about some things and for putting the Art Ensemble of Chicago and Dolly in the same list.

    But no Alice Stuart anywhere? Saw her around ’72 and learned there was such a thing as a guitar heroine. http://www.wolfgangsvault.com/alice-stuart-and-snake/video/golden-rocket_-777329698.html/watch?v=-8xQN3b6Cy8

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