Harvey Mandel

The Snake

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    6
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Mandel's fifth album, like Jeff Beck's best '70s efforts, add bluesy, jazzy shadings to a rock base. But The Snake is more firmly entrenched in blues-rock than, say, Blow by Blow. Harvey's playing (occasionally augmented by violinist Don "Sugarcane" Harris) is always impressive, but the compositions (all but one instrumental) aren't gripping, and meander too much. It's not as good as Mandel's late-'60s recordings for Philips, but it's still one of the better early rock-based fusion recordings.

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