Tommy Bolin

Energy

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By 1972, Tommy Bolin had left Zephyr and was yet to join the James Gang. He had formed a band christened, aptly enough, Energy, but they broke up before releasing any recordings. Yet, time in the studio was spent, resulting in this collection of songs released 27 years after their recording. Some of the songs would be redone with the James Gang ("Red Skies," "Got No Time for Trouble") or solo ("Dreamer") in the next few years, while "Naked Edge" comes from the soundtrack to a mountain-climbing film called Break on Through, but most of the contents of the album see their first release here. The album is mixed: "Heartlight" and "Miss Christmas" are fairly generic hard rock, while "Hok-O-Hey" and "Eyes of Blue" have a very Allman Brothers sound/feel, yet all are elevated by Bolin's guitar playing. The neo-psychedelic "Limits," sung by keyboardist Tom Stephenson, is unlike most of Bolin's other work and the extended instrumental "Naked Edge" furthers this psychedelic jamming. "Sky Sail" is a cinematic piano/guitar duet and is a perfect album closer. In the end, the album works more as a compilation of Energy's various styles than as a cohesive album.

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