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Captain Beefheart - Strictly Personal CD (album) cover


Captain Beefheart



3.42 | 105 ratings

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5 stars 4.5

The mere fact that this is a progression from the amazing Safe As Milk debut is enough for it to be a masterpiece. Indeed it is an amazing album. Don Van Vliet said that it was sabotaged, thanks to Bob Krasnow adding his beloved effects to (usually) the instrumental parts of the album. I could see how Don would see this is limited freedom as an artist, but you have to look past this here. The songs are more personal (hence the name) and sound much more like Beefheart finding his very own sound. His sound was definitely laid out here, as this marks the bluesy to the experimental phase of his career, which ends up being the best of both worlds. It's an easier listen than Trout Mask, and it's more adventurous than Safe As Milk. Don is in top form in this album with his harmonica playing, his writing, and of course his exceptional vocals. The rest of the band gets a lot of more freedom to play their hearts out in this album, the lengths of each song averages to about 6 minutes, which means there's a lot of that signature Magic Band playing (especially the incredible John French). The songs are put together extremely well, and are very powerful instrumentally and emotionally. This album can rival just about anything from this time period in any way, it's incredibly solid. It's amazing how much this album is overlooked, it's a real winner.

| 5/5 |


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