Rory Gallagher:
Rory Gallagher



RORY GALLAGHER, formerly of Taste, is now on his own and happening.'  That's what the ads say, but what do they know?

Well, something about the first part and nothing about the last. Because this is one of the most positively moribund albums to come down the pike since Frank Zappa's Greatest Hits. And that was sheer novacaine. What we have here, though, is a placebo.

The scam is that once there was this fairly jiveass-hotsy Irish bluzroc trio called Taste. Their first album on Atco had a couple of songs with titles like 'Blister On the Moon', but didn't live up to them and when you saw an 8 minute version of 'Catfish' listed on the backside, you knew you didn't wanta fork over your hard earned shoe shekels anyway.

But about a year later they released this album called On the Boards which had some nice bluesy neo-toned-down Led Zep, smidgens of appealing 'jazz' sax and Wes Montgomery-Szabo-isms and really good writing and the whole project sounded pretty good, especially if you got it promo gratis. And Gallagher wrote all the songs and played lead guitar and sax and voice and was fairly impressive on the level of an Isles demi-Creedence without the claustrophobic American Heritage fixations.

Almost concurrent with the album's release, though, you began to see little items in the pop papers about how the band was splitting up and Gallagher was dissatisfied with the 'limitations' of the format and the two other cats were saying things like he picked up the checks and paid them at rigid scale like one-nighter Chuck Berry sidemen or something.

So now a little over a year later we have this album, Rory no longer weighted down by decision and his fat ego flying free and it's one of the more noticeable vacuous releases of the season which is paradoxical enough to signify something I guess, but still no fun to hang around. And even if whatever Rory want Rory gets, he's basically a fuck up because prima donnas always are and we got enough asbestos air conditioner music already. Or, by Michael Ochs, Twelve Years After. Except that just like their recent output it resembles when divested of its Sir Lord Baltimorean amphetamine sizzle, nothing so much as a stale washrag. And Rory and nobody else is on it this time.
lester.jpgby Lester Bangs

This article comes from the January 1, 1972  issue of Phonograph Record
Thanks to Patricia McGarity for leading me to this article
reformatted by roryfan

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added 12/10/06