Wishbone Ash

Locked In

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Either the mid-'70s or the addition of Ted Turner's replacement, Laurie Wisefield, brought about a severe identity crisis for Wishbone Ash. No longer were they the self-conscious band that evolved from their blues-based debut to their prog precursor Pilgrimage to their progressive tour de force Argus. While Wishbone Ash was still a guitar-oriented band, Locked In provided no originality and, save for a guitar refrain in "Rest in Peace," no memorable passages whatsoever. While his credentials are impressive, producer Tom Dowd was not the man for the job. He was much better suited as a producer of Southern rock, jazz, and R&B acts. Again, Wishbone Ash suffered from inadequate lead vocals, but that wasn't as serious a problem as their atrocious songwriting. Locked In is the album that clearly signified the downfall of this immensely talented and promise-filled band. They never seemed to recover, both from a creative and popularity standpoint, from the abyss they fell into upon the release of Locked In.

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