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Sacred Songs

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Album Review

In what must be the most bizarre coupling ever, Hall is accompanied by none other than King Crimson figurehead Robert Fripp on production and, of course, on guitar. This record suffered at the hands of record company mismanagement. Originally recorded in 1977, Sacred Songs wasn't granted a release until 1980. RCA worried about Hall's lack of commercial vision. However Hall and Fripp's creativity strangely works. Sure, there are pieces that wouldn't do as singles, but for an album regarded as being so uncommercial, there are plenty that could have been: the wacky title song, "Something in 4/4 Time," "Farther Away," and "Why Was It So Easy" (the latter being one of Hall's best ballads). Most bonkers of all is "Babs and Babs," a straight-ahead Daryl Hall track until a Fripp soundscape kicks in from nowhere! Fripp's own "Urban Landscape" shows him having withdrawal symptoms from Bowie's infamous Heroes sessions. The onward march of studio technology means that the sound here is slightly dated. Still, it's a must-have purchase, ending with another killer ballad "Without Tears" — Earth magic indeed.

Customer Reviews

Finally this album is available again!

This album is part of a trilogy done by Robert Fripp in the late 70's. It consists of Peter Gabriel's 2nd solo album, Sacred Songs and Fripp's own album. Taken together it is one of Progressive Rock's great achievements. This album stands by itself as the best thing Daryl Hall ever recorded. His soul stylings against Fripps soundscapes are nothing short of other worldly. Sacred Songs, welcome back from the dead and into the light of digital recordings.

From the Sacred to the Profane

Daryl Hall's 1977 eclectic solo project with uber-progressive guitar god Robert Fripp was suppressed by RCA until it was eventually released in 1980. And that is too bad, as it is a great album. Hall's vocal chops are on full display here, from the straight-ahead rock of the the opening two numbers to the, beautiful balladeering or "Why Was it So Easy" and "Without Tears" to the punk-rock histrionics of "NYCNY." To me, though, the highlight of this record is almost eight-minute masterpiece "Babs and Babs", a left-brain v right-brain dialog that introduces Fripp's "Frippertronics" tape-loop contraption in the guitar solo. Wierd, spacey and beautiful sonic harmonic convergence adds an ethereal feel to this anthem. The Frippertronics come back in the song's fadeout and continue on through the next cut, "Urban Landscape" before ending in the hard-charging opening of "NYCNY." You will also hear the Frippertronics in the new-agey "The Farther Away I Am" and the hauntingly gorgeous closer "Without Tears." Any casual or hard-core fan of Hall & Oates needs to add this to their collection, now.

mind Altering

When I first heard this album, I was already a fan of Hall & Oates, and I was familiar with their experimental trips. I'd also heard King Crimson. I did not know about their collaboration. I just saw Daryl on the cover. I knew I had to have it. It did not disappoint. In fact, it went way beyond that. The music, the words, the width and the depth all touched me, and this tape stayed in my deck for a long while. I am happy to see it reissued. In college, my friends and I used to play songs for each other with the challenge: guess who this is? I used to invariably throw on 'NYCNY', eventually. To this day, that song bewilders and befuddles the unsuspecting listener. Daryl Hall? No Way! Listen again. You know the voice. Then listen to the words: the brain, the occult, the love, the record industry idiocy, expectations, hesitations, demented recitations. And they were just getting started. Wide eyed and hopeful, blue eyed and soulful (well ok John is not blue eyed-so there!) nothing is so simple, that the future still held the glittering prize or at least a toe hold onto the precipice of integrity. Eventually came Voices and Private Eyes and the rest is history they say.

If you think you know Hall & Oates and you're bored, go back. Check out Sacred Songs. Check out War Babies. The differences may astonish or diminish, but you will not know if you do not try. See Abandoned Luncheonette and War Babies and Beauty on the Back Street and Sacred Songs back to back to etc. . . . . Thanks for reading my ramblings!


Born: October 11, 1946 in Philadelphia, PA

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Philadelphia-born Daryl Hall is best known for being part of the '70s and '80s duo Hall & Oates, responsible for such hits as "Maneater," "Rich Girl," and "I Can't Go for That (No Can Do)." Hall attended Philadelphia's Temple University, where he met future partner John Oates. They played together for a short time in the late '60s, until Oates decided to transfer schools. Hall did not let this discourage his musical career, though, and he began playing with the rock group Gulliver. The band produced...
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