YEAR RELEASED: 1972
CHART ACTION: #51
SINGLES: Don’t Want to Say Goodbye (#86), Go All the Way (#5)
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: Maybe Come Around and See Me or I Saw the Light
LINEUP: Eric Carmen, Wally Bryson, Dave Smalley, Jim Bonfanti
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Cleveland-area band releases the quintessential power-pop single, and an album that’s unfortunately spotty.
SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: The opening notes of “Go All the Way” gives you a thrill few songs do; a rush of energy through your body that signals this is a special song. The move from hard rockin’ intro to gentler verses is genius and the harmonies in back of Carmen are, as some critics said at the time, definitely Beatle-esque.
If only the rest of the album were that thrilling. The two tracks after “Go All the Way” are decent enough and give you hope that it’ll be a fine album, especially “I Saw the Light”. The rest of the rockers seem tossed off or half-hearted, and Carmen’s ballads are goopier than sorghum syrup.
One of the problems is that the band was democratic, and let others carry the weight of the songwriting and singing. That was great for the Beatles, but here Carmen’s stuff is superior, so maybe one track each for Bryson and Smalley? Plus, there’s only nine tracks (and one of those is an eight minute excursion by Carmen). I exiled a few.
NOTES & MINUTIAE: The original album came with a scratch-and-sniff cover.
IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: No
GRADE: B-: I love the Raspberries. Or I should say, I love the songs that are on the compilations. Slogging through this album, at least, was tough.