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Steely Dan - Two Against Nature CD (album) cover


Steely Dan


Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.32 | 97 ratings

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Chris S
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars After a long rest or three studio albums later Steely Dan returned with a bang. This album won numerous awards too so this was not a quick reason to make a buck, I think more like Donald Fagen and Walter Becker wanted to get together again for the passion of making good music. Donald Fagen made two high quality albums ' Nightfly' and the futuristic ' Kamakiriad', whilst Becker made the album '11 Tracks of Whack!'. Fagen's album in many respects sounded like SD albums ( coincidentally produced by Walter Becker) but the true vintage sound returned on Two Against Nature. Musically more jazz associations, more intricate and complex sounds, the usual intelligent lyrics and even more horn arrangements, for the most part competently looked after by Michael Leonhart. Carolyn Leonhart, Cynthia Calhoun and Michael Harvey are also brilliant assisting on the backing vocals. Another strength to this studio album. There are some classics, almost controversial lyrics at times too, like the clever ' Cousin Dupree' where Fagen sings about his infatuation for his Aunts daughter ( don't worry he gets his come uppance), the funny ' Gaslighting Abbie'. Commercially I would have to say ' Jack Of Speed' comes closest, but what a funky groove!!. Funnily enough the least standout tracks are the most appealing IMO on Two Against Nature. The excellent ' Almost Gothic', my personal favourite ' Negative Girl', listen to the phenomenal guitar sounds fading out this track by either Dean Parks or Paul Jackson Jnr. and last and not least the final opus ' West Of Hollywood' which ends with some phrenetic horns and sax to confirm the more jazzy side of Steely Dan. There is no mistaking more jazz is evident, a bit like Supertramp's last two albums and this is far from being a negative. An excellent addition to any progressive music collection.
Chris S | 4/5 |


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