Chris Farlowe

The Art of Chris Farlowe

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Chris Farlowe's second Immediate Records LP (and his second album of 1966) was probably generated more by Andrew Oldham's need for ready cash than any real need for a second long-player -- he'd had a number one hit with Mick Jagger and Keith Richards' "Out of Time" and an accompanying LP was the way to go; luckily, he had the pipes and the inspiration to pull it off. He roars out of the starting gate with a sizzling rendition of "What Becomes of the Broken-Hearted" and "We're Doing Fine," but then Oldham had him look in-house for a song, "Life Is but Nothing" by Skinner and Rose (aka Twice as Much) (which isn't nearly as strong as their "You're so Good to Me," also here), and threw on two too many additional Jagger/Richards songs, in the violin-laden "Paint It Black" and the lightweight "Yesterday's Papers" ("I'm Free," by contrast, does work), interspersed with the harder "Open the Door to Your Heart," "It Was Easier to Hurt Her," "I've Been Loving You Too Long," and "Reach Out I'll Be There," and even the Farlowe co-authored "Cuttin' In." Except for the two weaker Jagger/Richards covers (we'll forgive "Out of Time," as it sort of had to be here) and the one Skinner/Rose miscalculation, this is as strong a soul album as Farlowe's debut, and only somewhat diluted from that perfection, at the weak points.

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