Though this self-titled LP is credited to Oily Rags, it's really a Chas & Dave album in all but name, as the duo would start to release recordings under that billing the following year. Chas & Dave had previously been responsible for another mighty obscure album issued under a different name (a self-titled 1971 effort by Country Pie). Like the Country Pie LP, this has a pronounced debt to the kind of honky tonk-cum-rock & roll that Jerry Lee Lewis was doing in the late '60s and early '70s. Oily Rags, however, is far more laid-back, to the point of sometimes verging on lethargy, if truth be told. Often these are the kind of rolling, reflective songs you might expect to hear at a local pub catering to a clientele that wants something grittier than folk music, but nothing too loud or nervy. Nothing wrong with that, but like much such music, it's really only adequate for background settings, and hardly inspiring enough to warrant devoted listening attention. It's only occasionally that this rocks Jerry Lee style, as "Country Boy Picker" does; mixed in are nearly turgid country ballads like "Boiled Beef and Carrots" and "Baby Doll," usually with a barroom piano base, though "Jody and the Kid" sounds almost like a country-folk Leonard Cohen. Vague reference points might also include artists like Leon Russell, the Band, and Dr. John, but Oily Rags are consistently more country-oriented and consistently less interesting.
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AllMusic Review by Richie Unterberger