Blue Ash Still Smokin’

7 Nov

blue-ash-no-more-no-less1

We received a review copy of this CD yesterday from our friends at Conqueroo. I has never heard of the band before, which is surprising because I’m a pretty big fan of the Power Pop movement. Blue Ash is kind of a cross between Badfinger and Buffalo Springfield, complete with plenty of 1970’s arena rock bombast. Dig the groovy threads and the white patent leather zip up boots. They even perform a crunchy version of the Beatles’ “Any Time at All.” Seek it out if you can. This is not a bad addition to your Power Pop catalog alongside other better-known practicioners of the underappreciated genre. If nothing else it’s an interesting timepiece worthy of a fresh listen.

When England’s esteemed ‘Guardian’ newspaper assembled their list of 1000 Albums to Hear Before You Die, the 1973 debut album from Blue Ash made the grade amongst all the established classics—pretty remarkable for an obscure record that was out-of-print for over 30 years! Well, we at ‘Collectors’ Choice’ have rectified that injustice, so this critically acclaimed LP can take its rightful place in the power pop pantheon. Signed to Mercury by legendary rock critic/publicist Paul Nelson, this four-piece from Youngstown, OH was among the first power pop bands alongside Badfinger, Big Star and Raspberries to revive the virtues of mid-‘Sixties rock against the then prevailing tides of prog excess and singer-songwriter self-absorption. ‘No More, No Less’ showcases the band’s knack for melodic three-minute pop tunes delivered via a breathless attack that melded the Byrds’ jangle with the Who’s rhythm section and the Fab Four’s harmonies, as heard on the first cut and best-known track ‘Abracadabra (Have You Seen Her?)’. Also includes their rave-up of the Dylan rarity ‘Dusty Old Fairgrounds’ and such proto-power pop gems as ‘I Remember a Time’ and ‘All I Want’.This first-ever CD release features brand-new liner notes, courtesy of the band’s bassist and co-songwriter Frank Secich, along with rare photos from the band’s archives. A ‘Collectors’ Choice Music’ exclusive!

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