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Gas Food Lodging / Green On Red

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Album Review

Restless Records admirably wanted to pad out their reissue of Green on Red's superb 1985 album Gas Food Lodging, so they tacked on the other Green on Red title in their catalog, the group's 1982 debut EP. A nice idea to be sure, but the trouble is that the two records represent Green on Red at two very different points of their development — Green on Red brought together seven slices of moody psychedelic-influenced pop with a dark and buzzy undercurrent, while Gas Food Lodging was the strongest work of the group's proto-roots rock period, as they took stock of the state of the union as seen through the windshield of their van. In short, they're two records of no small interest to Green on Red fans, but they make rather odd bedfellows in this matchup — Gas Food Lodging would have made more sense alongside the No Free Lunch EP, while Green on Red would sit better with the Gravity Talks album, but licensing being what it is, this is the pairing Restless has to offer. At the very least, the new Gas Food Lodging sounds cleaner and more full-bodied than its previous vinyl incarnation. Unfortunately, the Green on Red EP appears to have been salvaged from damaged tapes, with noticeable noise and occasional audio drop-outs; given its rarity, it's still a nice bonus, but the fidelity makes it sound all the more deficient compared to Gas Food Lodging. Then again, if you program out the Green on Red tracks, you're left with one of the best albums to come out of the '80s paisley underground scene, and that's no small thing.


Formed: 1981 in Tucson, AZ

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

Always wary of their paisley underground tag, it was only Green on Red's debut EP that leaned on the psychedelic sounds of the '60s before they traded it in for a boozy, all-American sound. They have been credited as latter-day forbears to the No Depression sound forged by Wilco and Son Volt. Singer and songwriter Dan Stuart, Chris Cacavas (keyboards), and Jack Waterson (bass) formed their first group in Tucson, AZ, in 1979. After the band relocated to L.A., drummer Alex MacNicol joined up and Green...
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Gas Food Lodging / Green On Red, Green On Red
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