Various Artists

Made in Canada, Vol. 2: 1969-1974 - Into the 70's

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The second of four volumes in RCA Canada's history of Canadian rock & roll, Into the 70's is a bit lacking in comparison to the first volume. That selection covered the heyday of Canada's garage rock period, a fruitful and under-represented time. In comparison, Into the 70's is a rather flat marriage of fluffy pop singles (R. Dean Taylor's speed-limit lament "Indiana Wants Me," Andy Kim's bubblegum anthem "Rock Me Gently," Edward Bear's gloriously twee "You, Me & Mexico") and mostly empty exercises in choogling heavy rock. But the Guess Who were the biggest band in the country at the time and, appallingly, not one song from this, the band's prime period, is represented on Into the 70's. Most people missed that the Guess Who were special because of their uncanny pop sense, without which the proceedings on this collection can be pretty rough going at times. When one of the best tracks is an early single by April Wine, trouble is clearly afoot. That said, Copperpenny's "Sitting on a Poor Man's Throne" is a groovy, R&B-influenced shouter and Ian Thomas' two tracks, the solo "Painted Ladies" and "If You're Lookin'," a single by his earlier Tranquillity Base group, are charming folk-rock.

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