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Wishbone Ash - Locked In CD (album) cover


Wishbone Ash


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2.09 | 132 ratings

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Easy Livin
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
1 stars They should have been locked up

Ever come across a "Talk box"*? Unfortunately Wishbone Ash did, and used it on this album. The device is used to take the sound of an instrument, in this case guitar, and put it into the mouth of the vocalist via a tube. Peter Frampton used on to great effect on his "Frampton comes alive" album. Unfortunately, the sound it creates has a novelty value which lasts for about five minutes. After that, it rapidly becomes tedious and dull.

"Locked in" was already in trouble before the Talk Box came along. Wishbone Ash had all but run out of inspiration, and were making music which was at best average. "Argus" guitarist Ted Turner had moved on, being replaced by Laurie Weisfield. Weisfield certainly came with a decent pedigree, having been the main driving force behind HOME's wonderful prog classic "The alchemist". To be fair, the responsibility for this turkey should not be placed at his door, the band collectively fall here. Indeed, producer Tom Dowd should probably shoulder much of the blame. He didn't write the awful lyrics of course, or come up with the poorly composed songs, but his swamp rock/jazz background meant that he led the band in a direction which was completely unsuitable.

Things start off reasonably well, with " Rest In Peace", a decent attempt at a typical Wishbone Ash song. Yes that dang Talk Box is there, but there is a good lengthy guitar play-out too. Unfortunately, that's really it. "No water in the well" is an all too accurate description of the next song, which features some astonishingly bad singing, and funky keyboards. "Moonshine" has a predictable country rock style, while "She was my best friend" has you crying for all the wrong reasons. If side one had not been bad enough, the band manage to plunge even lower on side two. "Half past lovin'" must surely be the worst Wishbone Ash song ever, being a directionless, tuneless funky blues number.

By now I'm sure you get the picture, this was Wishbone Ash's nadir. There really is nothing positive I can say about this album, even the cover is lifeless and uninspiring. This album really does deserve to be locked in.

* Many thanks to fellow member Joolz for correcting my original assertion that the device was a "vocoder". It seems there is often confusion between the two.

Easy Livin | 1/5 |


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