It's Better Than Working

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The follow-up to 1975's Use Your Imagination, It's Better Than Working caught Mud continuing to pursue the twin directions laid out by their most recent hits -- one eye on a distinctly Showaddywaddy-shaped brand of rock & roll revivalism, and the other firmly grasping the soft rock softball that had served former stablemates Smokey so well. Neither was it an altogether desultory decision -- "Night on the Tiles" handed the band one more in the long sequence of hit singles that had sustained them since 1973, while a taste of Mud's eye for the unusual was delivered by an unlikely cover of Alex Harvey's "Vambo Rools." "Beating Round the Bush" and the amusingly titled "Blagging Boogie Blues," too, captured more than a soup├žon of the quartet's early endearing goofiness, rendering It's Better Than Working a stronger album than might have been expected -- even if it still can't hold a candle to a decent, career-length hits collection.

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