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It's A Beautiful Day - Choice Quality Stuff / Anytime CD (album) cover


It's A Beautiful Day



3.28 | 19 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars A lot of people said that IT'S A BEAUTIFUL DAY deterioated bad after two or three albums. I even found "Marrying Maiden" a bit of a letdown compared to their first (although there's good stuff on it), so I was expecting "Choice Quality Stuff" to suck bad. I was actually quite surprised by this album. The album apparently has two different titles, as if they were two EPs, one title fitting each side of the LP. Side one is "Choice Quality Stuff" and side two is "Anytime". I was in shock just how much of this album rocks, especially on side one. Like on "Lady Love", never had I heard the band rock like these, not even "Wasted Union Blues" off their classic debut. "Words" bears an uncanny resemblance to SANTANA, even less surprising when you bear in mind that two of SANTANA's percussionists guest here. "No Words For Love" has more of that hippie vibe, and for the first time on an IABD album, flute!

Side two consists of somewhat more mellower stuff, probably to go back to the sound fo their first two. There are a couple songs I can live without, one of them the instrumental "Oranges and Apples", trying so bad to rehash "Bombay Calling" off their debut, and falling flat (much more cheesy and lacking the excitement), and "Anytime" which is pretty lame, with lame lyrics. "Bitter Wine" is one of the better cuts here, and not only does David LaFlamme play violin, but Sid Page (of Dan Hicks & His Hot Licks fame) as well (it's interesting to note that LaFlamme was an early member of DH&HHL, before they started recording). The band was under some serious lineup changes, in fact, two different lineups play on this album, which get real confusing here. Original members Mitchell Hollman, Val Fuentes, and Patti Santos are all here, but they also have Tom Fowler play bass on some cuts, and this is the same Tom Fowler who would later play with Frank ZAPPA on some of his albums (including his notorious "Over-Nite Sensation"), as well as different guitarists. Fred Webb, keyboardist since "Marrying Maiden" is still here, handling the piano, organ, and harpsichord. This album is better than you might think, and is different from their previous two, and it's actually worth having.

Proghead | 4/5 |


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