Wednesday, 9 January 2019

America - Homecoming (1972)

  

Released November 1972

This was classic folk rock group America's second album. While still based around their intricate acoustic guitar sounds and beautifully harmonious vocals, this is a lot more rocky than their debut album was, employing a more solid drum sound and some firmer bass lines. There is far more use of electric guitar in places too.

TRACK LISTING

1. Ventura Highway
2. To Each His Own
3. Don't Cross The River
4. Moon Song
5. Only In Your Heart
6. Till The Sun Comes Up Again
7. Cornwall Blank
8. Head And Heart
9. California Revisited
10. Saturn Nights

"Ventura Highway" is just a delicious slice of 1970s freeway Americana. It is melodic, airy, catchy ad breezily beautiful. So very evocative of its era. "Alligator lizards in the air...." says one of the lyrics. America had not forgotten their hippy roots. "To Each His Own" is a subtle, mid-pace piano and drums rock number with an ethereal vocal.  "Don't Cross The River" has a CSNY "Marrakesh Express"-style shuffling rhythm at the beginning before it breaks out into a lively country rocker. "Moon Song" has a nice bass line, together with some sumptuous electric guitar and pounding drums too as the song breaks out. The very folk-rock-ish "Only In Your Heart" reminds me of some of Gilbert O'Sullivan's songs from the same period. There is some nice buzzy electric guitar at the end.

"Till The Sun Comes Up Again" has an infectious rhythm to it and more of that gentle breeze effect in its quiet, peaceful feeling. Although rock drums are used, they are never overpowering. "Cornwall Blank" is a very Neil Young-influenced track, of which there were always one or two on America albums. Some more nice guitar on here, both electric and bass and some captivating percussion as well. "Head And Heart" is a beautifully sung acoustic number.

"California Revisited" is a perfect example of captivating early seventies folk rock. Lovely guitar, bass, drums and vocals and just a general laid-back but gently rocking feel. It really rocks out at the end though too, like many America tracks do, ending on a strong upbeat note. "Saturn Nights" is a beguiling piano, bass and drum backed number to close the album. As with the debut album, you can't possibly listen to this album and not pick up on its relaxing nature.

B-

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