8 Songs, 44 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

The ‘70s saw Rod Stewart transform from a rootsy-bluesy rock vocalist into one of the era’s most successful pop singers. He traded critical respect for commercial success. Why he wasn’t allowed both might have more to do with his playboy persona and what critics detected as a lack of seriousness on Stewart’s part towards his craft. He was, after all, one of the most gifted vocalists of his generation. “You’re Insane” and “Born Loose” aren’t among Stewart’s finest songs, yet are not without their excitement, but the artistic ambitions aren’t much more than to have a good time. For a pure cheese groove, “Hot Legs” has plenty of attitude, while “You Keep Me Hangin’ On” is Motown updated and done well if a bit overlong at over seven minutes, casting one ear towards the Supremes and one more emphatically at Vanilla Fudge. “You’re In My Heart” remains one of Stewart’s most affecting ballads and was a deserved hit, whereas album closer “I Was Only Joking” is one of Stewart’s most autobiographical, touching and even slyly funny songs.

EDITORS’ NOTES

The ‘70s saw Rod Stewart transform from a rootsy-bluesy rock vocalist into one of the era’s most successful pop singers. He traded critical respect for commercial success. Why he wasn’t allowed both might have more to do with his playboy persona and what critics detected as a lack of seriousness on Stewart’s part towards his craft. He was, after all, one of the most gifted vocalists of his generation. “You’re Insane” and “Born Loose” aren’t among Stewart’s finest songs, yet are not without their excitement, but the artistic ambitions aren’t much more than to have a good time. For a pure cheese groove, “Hot Legs” has plenty of attitude, while “You Keep Me Hangin’ On” is Motown updated and done well if a bit overlong at over seven minutes, casting one ear towards the Supremes and one more emphatically at Vanilla Fudge. “You’re In My Heart” remains one of Stewart’s most affecting ballads and was a deserved hit, whereas album closer “I Was Only Joking” is one of Stewart’s most autobiographical, touching and even slyly funny songs.

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