Sunday, 30 September 2018

Paul Simon - Still Crazy After All These Years (1975)


  

Released October 1975

Recorded in New York City

Whereas 1973's "There Goes Rhymin' Simon" experimented with various musical styles, this album, two years later, was pretty much played in the same laid-back, immaculately-played and easy late night jazz style. It is a very relaxing album.

The title track is a reflective piece, well-known to everyone by now. "My Little Town" sees Simon reunited with Art Garfunkel for some delicious harmonies and a "Kodachrome"-style rhythm.  "I'd Do It For Your Love" is another entrancing slow number, while "50 Ways To Leave Your Lover" is an addictively rhythmic and catchy song that became one of his biggest hits. "Night Game" is a rather odd song about a participant in a baseball game dying, it would seem. It is a rather chilling song.

"Gone At Last" is a vibrant, lively slice of infectious gospel and "Have A Good Time" has a punchy bit of jazzy brass in it, over an insistent female backing vocal. "Some Folks' Lives Roll Easy" is a soulful, slow number that Simon would re-record on 2018's "In The Blue Light". "You're Kind" has an appealing, bassy and percussion-driven refrain and a mellifluous Simon vocal. The tempo ups a bit on this, but not much, just in its stronger rhythm. "Silent Eyes" is a plaintive piano and bass-driven ballad to end what is a pretty low-key and short album. "Slip Slidin' Away", recorded during this album's sessions surely should have been included.

It was a huge seller, but for me, there are better Simon albums out there. It is perfectly pleasant, of course, as all his albums are. It seemed a bit of a "treading water" album to me. Despite that, there was not another album to come for another five years. Actually, maybe I'm being a bit unfair, it does have hidden depths and appeal, requiring many listens.

C+

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