Various Artists

1974

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At first glance, Direct Source's 1974 looks like a decent, low-cost sampler of some really good music from 1974. When you look at the fine print on the back cover, however, you find the chilling disclaimer that says some of the songs have been re-recorded. Since the disc came out in 2000, one would assume that they are re-recordings from the '90s. A quick listen would also tell you that the remakes are uniformly terrible. For example, the versions of Maria Muldaur's "Midnight at the Oasis," Paper Lace's "The Night Chicago Died," and Redbone's "Come and Get Your Love" are tinny and overly smooth musically, as well as very weak in the vocal department. The horror that is the Sweet's knackered "Teenage Rampage" is the absolute nadir of this disc; why anyone would want to hear that classic song ruined by modern production "techniques" is a mystery on par with Jimmy Hoffa's disappearance. Don't be fooled by the splashy cover or the big names involved; this is a disc that must be avoided at all costs.

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