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Friday On My Mind

The Easybeats

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Album Review

Friday on My Mind, produced by Shel Talmy and recorded in England, captures the Easybeats at just about their peak, combining all of the best elements in the evolution of their sound under one cover. The Easybeats were still one of the most energetic outfits in rock music, with a raw, highly animated guitar attack, but they were trying (and largely succeeding with) ever more complex vocal harmony parts and some staccato guitar harmony as well that was pretty impressive, and at this stage they were working with a brace of gorgeous Harry Vanda/George Young originals. The ubiquitous title track is in excellent company, surrounded by an array of mid- to late-60's British rock treasures: a killer garage punk rendition of "River Deep, Mountain High," with a superb performance by Stevie Wright and what sounds almost like a sitar buried somewhere in the midst of the crisp electric guitars; "Do You Have a Soul," with its abrupt tempo changes, cascading choruses, chiming guitars, and hooks that seem to flow into each other effortless; "Saturday Night," with more sitar-like sounds beneath the radiant choruses and rhythm guitar hooks; the dramatic, angst-ridden "You Me, We Love," on which Vanda's guitar playing becomes as intense as Wright's wrenching vocal performance; "Pretty Girl," with its crunchy rhythm guitar sound and catchy lyric hooks and choruses; and "Made My Bed Gonna Lie in It," a punk anthem nearly as catchy and well-played as "I'm Not Like Everybody Else." Not everything on this album is as successful as these cuts, but it is all good listening, even the eerie, original album finale, "See Line Woman." In fact, only the rendition of Leiber and Stoller's "Hound Dog" may be out of place, and even it works as a change of pace. The label of "Australia's Beatles" may have proved an overstatement to some, but one can get a good look at its basis on this album — it's loaded with actual and potential hit singles, yet it doesn't come off as lightweight in any way.

Biography

Formed: 1964 in Sydney, New South Wales, Australi

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '80s

The Easybeats occupy a unique place in the pantheon of 1960s British rock acts. For starters, they were Australian, except that they really weren't — they met in Sydney alright, and being based in Australia with the talent they had gave them a leg-up over any of the local competition. But lead singer Stevie Wright originally came from England (although he'd been in Australia for some years), and bassist Dick Diamonde hailed from the Netherlands, as did guitarist Harry Vanda, while the others,...
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Friday On My Mind, The Easybeats
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