Greenwich Village in the mid-'80s was an unparalleled meeting place for the contemporary generation of songwriters. The group of writers who were drawn there and worked in the various clubs and co-ops that made up the scene have gone on to form the core of this country's important singer/songwriters. Gadfly Records has had the good sense to reissue Rod MacDonald's 1985 album, White Buffalo. It was originally released in a slightly different form by Autogram in Germany in 1985, then in Canada on the McDisk Label with the current tracks and an organ overdub, then again on CD by Brambus in Switzerland with a few extra cuts. Now finally White Buffalo is available in the U.S. in all its glory. MacDonald was one of the most active and dynamic of the Greenwich Village performers at that time and this record accurately represents how he sounded in the clubs. Recorded live in the attic studio of bassist Mark Dann after a sold out two night stand at the SpeakEasy (the important club in the village then), these sessions feature terrific, tight playing, the late Howie Wyeth on drums, John Kruth on banshee mandolin, Dann on bass, and Rod on guitar and harmonica. His classic songs "Song of My Brothers," "Blues for the River," "The Aliens Came in Business Suits," "Water," "Cross Country Waltz" and other superb tunes are all here. They are melodic, thoughtful and fun songs with great hooks; the ballads are bittersweet and haunting. Of his four albums to date, this one is his most consistent and true to his onstage sound.
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AllMusic Review by Richard Meyer