The Edgar Winter Group with Rick Derringer
Blue Sky PZ 33798
Released: November 1975
Chart Peak: #124
Weeks Charted: 8
If the Edgar Winter Group has not scaled their ultimate heights, it's not due to any poor efforts -- I have yet to hear a truly bad Winter cut -- but rather their lack of a major, landmark recording. This is not that milestone but it does continue a standard of excellence that few bands reach and even fewer sustain.
The four adapt various rock styles iwth remarkable ease. "Cool Dance" is a rocking soul number with plenty of Winter's wailing saxophone, a rare treat since he usually sticks to keyboads. "Infinite Peace in Rhythm" is an instantly catchy pastiche of reggae and early Byrds 12-string guitar. Dobro and stand-up bass define "Can't Tell One from the Other," an unlikely yet workable path for this hard rock combine. To be sure, Winter and company follow trends but they plagiarize only themselves: "Chainsaw" is a variation on their well-known "Frankenstein," and they lift the soloing segment on "People Music" from "Free Ride."
Above all, the Edgar Winter Group demonstrates that quality need not include originality. Winter, Derringer, Hartman and Ruff can indeed be criticized for never taking risks -- but when they make it work, why complain? Not many rockers can play it this safe and make it sound so good.
- Charley Walters, Rolling Stone, 12/4/75.
With his preceding two albums respectively platinum and gold, one of glitter rock's kings is sure to find another eager welcome in the marketplace. This is a beautifully produced album, technically gemlike. With three of the group's foursome now contributing effective songs, the range of material on this LP is wider and more pleasing than previously. Winter is taking more of the lead vocals as well as writing more, and his contributions seem to make the difference between a set of all-out rock and the more musically ambitious package we find here. Best cuts: "Diamond Eyes," "Chainsaw," "Let's Do It Together Again," "Infinite Peace In Rhythm."
- Billboard, 1975.
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