The Frost

Through the Eyes of Love

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The most refined of the three albums by the Frost features singer/songwriter Dick Wagner as producer, with Sam Charters, producer of the first two albums -- Frost Music and Rock and Roll Music -- listed as executive producer. The album kicks off with a seven-minute, 38-second "Black As Night," taking this Detroit band further into the domain U.K. rockers dominated. Excellent low-key Sabbath riff, progressive rock melody, and "Hey Jude" chorus conclusion. If the first two Frost discs are some hybrid of Brit and Detroit rock, the line gets further erased on "Through the Eyes of Love," the title track. The flavor is more like Marmalade's "Reflections of My Life" than Grand Funk's "Closer to Home," but the tune veers off into a direction explored by neither of the above with a relentless chorus of "God help us please" -- the subtitle of this song. Vanguard certainly showed faith by releasing three albums by the Frost, but one wonders listening to this if a Terry Knight or Jeff Wald had gotten behind these fellows how music history might have changed. "Maybe Tomorrow" has a riff taken from the Beatle's "She Said." The two minute and 31 seconds would have been fun on radio across America. Don Hartman's "Fifteen Hundred Miles (Through the Eye of a Beatle)" seems to reiterate the Detroit/London feel the music conveys. Garris Gordy's one songwriting contribution, "It's So Hard," further explores Frost's musical path, that fuzzy bassline holding up the chorus vocals and Wagner's impeccable guitar. The riff pulled out of the Humble Pie textbook, and the influence of Steve Marriott from both Small Faces and Humble Pie evident here. "A Long Way From Home" turns things around yet again, a pop ballad with heavy Gordy Garris piano. Dick Wagner proved his ability to write hits with Alice Cooper later in the decade, and this one track is the best example of the Frost's leader's pop sensibilities and skills. It is majestic, inspiring music. Where the Amboy Dukes and Terry Knight & the Pack got the ink, this band slugged it out in the trenches and was true to their mission. The cover art by David Edward Byrd, designed by Jules Halfant, is misleading. It does not represent the music inside, music that Vanguard was not known for. Play this next to the album by Flint to notice the difference in execution. Truly a lost hard pop artifact that deserves to find an audience.

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