Eggs Over Easy

Good 'n' Cheap

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In some quarters, Eggs Over Easy and their lone album, Good 'n' Cheap, are legendary. They are the band that kick-started the entire pub rock movement of the early '70s -- not just by sketching out the initial circuit of pubs throughout England, but by developing the signature blend of laid-back country-rock and straight-ahead, driving rock & roll that served as the template for the entire movement, heard most strongly in the work of Eggs Over Easy's biggest fans, Brinsley Schwarz. Unfortunately for them, they had worse luck than the Brinsleys, recording only a fraction of their reported 100 songs (which included covers), and that record was cut a short after they left the U.K. for their native America. They broke up not much later, and their lone album was never easy to find -- in fact, it didn't appear on CD until the summer of 2002, and that was in a Japan-only release. Prior to that, their only song in print was "The Factory," a hard-rocking number anthologized on the classic Naughty Rhythms collection. That tune, combined with the presence of Link Wray as a co-producer, suggests that Good 'n' Cheap would be an entirely hard-rocking affair, but it's much more laid-back, capturing the genial, rootsy flavor that was heard so effectively on such records as the Brinsleys' Silver Pistol, and this record is just as good, a definition of a lost classic. It's a relaxed affair, even when it rocks, but that's the appeal -- this is the sound of a great neighborhood roots band that can sing sweetly but also adds some real grit to their late-night laments or weekend party anthems. True, this is not the kind of record that will take anybody by surprise, but it's a quiet triumph all the same, and for those pub rock fanatics who have waited many years to hear this full album, it's everything they wanted it to be: a record that not only sounds like the foundation for the music (whose influences become immediately apparent when heard in whole), but an album that's a hell of a lot of fun, that immediately sounds like an old favorite. [The Hux label reissued Good 'n' Cheap with bonus tracks in 2006.]

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