index page for Delicado Album Details
Poet, Fool or Bum/Back on the Street Again  - Lee Hazlewood - 1973-1977
Label: EMI 7243 5 98980 2 5 (UK)
Format: CD
From: USA
My rating: 5/10

Entered: 04/05/2004
Last updated: 04/22/2004

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After the rash of superb reissues back in 1999 on the Smells Like Records label, things had gone quiet in terms of Lee Hazlewood reissues. Then last year came the 2CD compilation of Lee's 1960s MGM work. And now EMI in the UK have reissued two more LPs. I had heard a few tracks from 'Poet...' on a bootleg, but it's nice to have the proper album.

That said, these recordings aren't as immediate as the other reissues I mentioned. The instrumentation is similar to classic Lee - guitars with a slightly country feel, jerky basslines, strings, and occasional backing vocals. But somehow it's not all that magical this time. I think perhaps the compositions aren't quite as good as his earlier work. There are also cover versions of songs by both Leonard Cohen and Tom Waits. The latter makes him sound very much like mid-90s Nick Cave.

Back on the Street Again has a slightly different production. The vocals sound icy and cool, but the backings are pretty wacky. 'Your thunder and your lightning' is mildly disco influenced and bit cheesy. Synthesizers and Lee just don't go together in my head. The rest of the album has a country feel most of the time.

I'm glad to have these albums, and they might grow on me, but right now they're not really up there with Cowboy in Sweden, The NSVIPs and his MGM albums. Apologies for this rather simplistic review, which I will revisit later.
Lee Hazlewood recommendations at Musical Taste
   Wait and See
   For one moment
   The Nights
   Bye Babe
Links for Lee Hazlewood
   Still the best and most authoritative Lee Hazlewood site, even now, after the rest of the world has 'discovered' Lee's unique brand of genius. The site provides hitherto unavailable information on the story of Lee's life, and a great archive of links, discographies and album art.
   Lee now has his own official site. Very cool; has sound clips, and reveals details of Lee's forthcoming new album ('For Every Solution there's a problem') and book ('The Pope’s Daughter'). Lee even provides music recommendations!

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