Moe Bandy

It Was Always So Easy (To Find An Unhappy Woman)

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Moe Bandy made quite a splash with his 1974 debut I Just Started Hatin' Cheatin' Songs Today, cracking the country Top 20 twice with its hits, but with his second album, It Was Always So Easy (To Find an Unhappy Woman), he not only proved that the debut was no fluke, he wound equalling it. There isn't much difference in its sound or approach -- the biggest change is that there is one well-known cover tune here, in the presence of a great version of the great Bob Wills song "Home in San Antone" -- but that's hardly a detriment. Thankfully, there isn't a sense of complacency here, just the sense that producer Ray Baker, Bandy, and his band -- featuring such stellar sidemen as Johnny Gimble, Pig Robbins, and Charlie McCoy -- know better than to mess with something that they got right the first time around. If anything, the group stretches themselves a bit (the Western swing of "Home in San Antone" was not heard on the debut), giving rich, relaxed performances which Bandy compliments with assured, confident singing. Then, there are the songs, which are as good as what came before, highlighted by three Dallas Frazier songs ("Don't Anyone Make Love at Home Anymore," "Loving You Was All I Ever Needed," "I'm Gonna Listen to Me"), as well as Owens/Shafer's great title track. If the debut edges this one slightly, it's partially because of the lack of the thrill of the new and partially because the mood on that first album is more intense, something that's appropriate for a record about drinking, jealousy, and cheating. This is a bit of a lighter affair, with sprightlier tempos and a more cheerful mood, even if the sound and topics are largely the same. In the end, it's merely the opposite of the same coin, really, and both records aren't just equally satisfying, they constitute a peerless pair of pure hardcore country.

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