An Act of Goddo

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After the artistic peak of Who Cares, it would have been tough for Goddo's singer, bassist, and chief songwriter Greg Godovitz to top himself. Wisely, he doesn't even try on his power trio's third album, An Act of Goddo. Recorded in the vacation environs of Florida and mixed at the Bee Gees Miami studio, An Act of Goddo is appropriately a looser, more relaxed outing that emphasizes meat-and-potatoes songcraft, big swaggering riffs, spacious arrangement, lengthy solos, and, oddly, a more reflective lyrical tone over the ambition and excess of its predecessor. But while it doesn't aspire to the same heights as Who Cares, it still rises to the occasion at points. "So Walk On" and "Work it Out" are arena rockers with ringing, canyon-sized guitar lines from Gino Scarpelli and solid back beats from Doug Inglis. "Rosie (Just Hang On)" and "The Verdict's In" shake, rattle, and roll to grooves that gene-splice rubberlegged rockabilly to '70s guitar rock. Godovitz indulges his continuing classical aspirations with the palindromically titled "Anacanapanacana," an overture combining melodies from several cuts. And he offers up a pair of wistful ballads in the bilingual Left Bank ode "Chantal" and the urgent guitar-strummer "Take Care." Ultimately, though, the most meaningful song on An Act of Goddo may have been "Sign on the Line." Inspired by the bite-the-hand-that-feeds-you nihilism of punk, Godovitz penned this anti-music biz screed about "record executive lies" and shipped it to his label. Surprise! Goddo was soon shopping for a new deal, and this album lapsed out of print for years before being reissued on CD in 2000 on Canadian label Bullseye.

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