The pairing of Compass Point and I've Got Something to Say is the oddest of the two-fers issued by Bear Family as volume five in their David Allan Coe Columbia retrospective. On his ninth and tenth albums for Columbia, Coe was still looking for respect from radio program directors in Nash Vegas and nationwide -- and wasn't getting it, despite the ace production team of Billy Sherrill and Ron Bledsoe. Compass Point is the most reflective of Coe's albums in the sense that it seemingly constantly looks back to the previous, and most of that isn't pretty; in fact, it's full of regret and remorse, but the determination to transcend as well. The percussion tracks are straight out of Jimmy Buffett's classic records and the atmospherics are pure Sherrill -- phased guitars and accordions and fiddles shimmering in and out of the mix. Two of the finest songs on the album are "Gone (Like)" and "Loving Her (Will Make You Lose Your Mind)." I've Got Something to Say is Coe's star-guest album -- a blatant attempt for radio airplay (it says so in the liner notes) that doesn't work at all. From the re-recording of "This Bottle (In My Hand)," with George Jones (given that this was recorded in 1980, when Jones was a recently recovering alcoholic, it's tasteless) to the re-recording of "Take This Job and Shove It," done as a reaction to the film of the same name, the songs are more boisterous than inspired. "Take It Easy Rider," with Guy Clark, sounds more confused and lost than anything else, and "Hank Williams Junior-Junior" with the Allman Brothers' Dickey Betts and Kris Kristofferson is a bad -- no, make that terrible -- novelty song. This is the only case in which it is too bad that a very decent outing like Compass Point was paired with such a poor one.
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AllMusic Review by Thom Jurek