On the Beach (Reprise)
Jeff Abarta: What a record. It’s incredible to me, to think that this record, which was originally released in 1974, did not get issued on CD until 2003. The CD was my first exposure to this incredible album.
The lead track “Walk On” does a great job of kicking things off, although its mood might be a little misleading. It’s a bit more jaunty than anything else on the record, but it fits nicely. The mood quickly becomes more somber, with the reflective and plaintive “See The Sky About To Rain.” The beautiful Wurlitzer (played by Neil) is what really makes this track, along with Ben Keith’s steel guitar. “Revolution Blues” is where shit gets real, with angry lyrics, and some killer bass playing by Rick Danko.
“For The Turnstiles” is stripped down to the barest essentials: voice, banjo & guitar, and the guitar solo on “Vampire Blues” is an amazing one-note gem that only Neil can pull off. That would end Side 1. Side 2 is all about the mood. “On The Beach, Motion Pictures (For Carrie)” and “Ambulance Blues” are just an incredible way of finishing out the record. I think the album just gets better as it moves toward the end. AND it gets better every time I hear this record. What an absolute masterpiece.
Feeling Young with Total Massacre: Total Massacre’s “Pick Yer Poison” single is out now.