The Sir Douglas Quintet + 2

Sir Douglas Quintet + 2 = Honkey Blues

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It is hard to believe that this is the first entry in the extensive Sir Douglas Quintet discography, as it seems like the kind of experimental venture an artist might throw out after a handful of successful albums have already been released. The electic nature of bandleader Doug Sahm is undisputed, but this has got to be his album with the most experimental jazz leanings, again not something one would expect. The type of themes that Sahm would return to again and again in his songwriting are here, delivered by a grouping that lacks one of the essential sparkplugs in the Sir Douglas Quintet engine, keyboard man Augie Meyers. There is presumed to be compensation in the form of a total of five horn players, including Bay Area session whiz Mel Martin, but someone decided to record them with enough reverb to submerge a whale. A total of seven songs, none of them really extended enough to account for paucity of titles, get a loping, jamming treatment that gets the message across, although a little vaguely at times. Certainly a promising, original album well above the level of most rock-bands-with-horns experiments of this era, but not as inspiring as this band's music would soon become.

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