Frijid Pink

Earth Omen

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Two albums after their Top Ten 1970 hit single, "House of the Rising Sun," this band is almost like Michael Tegza's version of Love Craft when they could've gone in a Blue Cheer direction and expanded their horizons. It's not that there is no compelling music on Earth Omen. The title track, with a classy, ecological chorus, is torpedoed by hokey lyrics in the verse. "Sailor" isn't bad either, and the musicianship goes from good to very good, while the cover concept, featuring frozen humans on the front and a photo negative of the five bandmembers on the back, goes hand in hand with the album's themes. This MGM-distributed Lion records release is a rather interesting study in a band that should have had a couple of more laps around the brass ring, if not being able to grab it one more time. "Lazy Day" has mandolin-like guitar strummings from Craig Webb, more solid vocals covering ecology themes, and something that would be inviting on FM radio in the middle of the night concluding side one. "Eternal Dream" is quiet Black Sabbath without Ozzy Osborne, like "Changes" off of Black Sabbath, Vol. 4, and the song is a good example of why the material is good, but not exemplary, rock. That thunderous blast which reinvented "House of the Rising Sun" is toned down, and that was the selling point. That was the character that brought this ensemble over the top. Had the frigid arctic blasts that catapulted that single been employed on Earth Omen, had the sound matched the look of the packaging, this album would be cherished. "New Horizon" comes off like a Midwest version of Quicksilver Messenger Service, a bit of blues with a Detroit rock edge, while "Rainbow Rider" shows the other dilemma: Jim Wearing's lead vocals don't have the angst Kelly Green displayed on their hit from two years earlier. This is a band desperately in need of an Alice Cooper to give the music some spirit. There are some clever ideas and interesting moments on Earth Omen, but in spite of its best efforts, it stays in the minor leagues.

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