Ma Kelly's Greasy Spoon review by Status Quo

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  • Released: Jan 1, 1970
  • Sound: 9
  • Lyrics: 7
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8 Superb
  • Users' score: 10 (3 votes)
Status Quo: Ma Kelly's Greasy Spoon

Sound — 9
Looking back at a band's early material is always a good way to see how they gained their talents (and in any case, flaws). Early Quo albums displayed a band that went with the flow, in 'Picturesque Matchstickable Messages' and 'Spare Parts', and one that was still trying to find it's feet in 'Ma Kelly's Greasy Spoon' and Dog Of Two Head'. 'Me Kelly's Greasy Spoon' displays many of the elemants that are clearly evident in modern day Quo tracks. The boogie and the shuffle; the rhythm and the blues, all of which seem to have been in the making with this album. The first track shows one of Quo's earliest Rhythm & Blues attempts, in the form of "Spinning Wheel Blues". The song shows evident shuffle methods/techniques coming from near enough every instrument. Brilliantly written by Francis Rossi and Bob Young (a songwriter who writes with Francis to this day). The second track shows another side of Quo's musical dice, the Alan Lancaster style. Lancaster, thoughout his time in Quo, seems to write whatever anyone else is playing. When "Daughter" was written, it was just post-'60s, and as a result Lancaster's first track shown on the album sounds very '60s, with a '60s styled rhythm/beat and a commonly used effect on Francis' vocals. Both the mentioned tracks are great in their own fields, and they both show a band with the diversity to pull off more than one style on one album. I still see it as a band who are trying to establish themselves musically. Each member had their own comfort zone, that's also noticable; Francis, Blues/R&B, Rick and Alan, Rock N Roll and modern Rock, but when combined, they had the power to produce almost anything that takes their fancy. There is that even ballance of different styled track throughout the album. Blues/R&B, "Lazy Poker Blues", "Junior's Wailing", "(April) Spring Summer and Wednesdays"; Rock/Alternative, "Shy Fly", "Need Your Love", "Is It Really Me/Gotta Go Home"; Acoustic (A style that Quo would develop later in their career); "Everything", "Lakky Lady". There's bound to be something to satisfy most people's styles on here, though the sound quality is a little dreary. That can't be helped, from the time the album was made.

Lyrics — 7
The late '60s/'70s wasn't exactly famous for brilliant lyrics, in fairness. Listening to most of the tracks on this album shows that, evidently. The quality of the vocals (sound-wise) isn't grea either, but that goes with the time it was made. The vocals from Francis sound great. I think Rick does vocals on "Everything", but I'm not sure. If he does, he does very well. Alan's vocals are the weakest, by far; That is displayed clearly in "Lazy Poker Blues". Regardless, Francis steals the album for vocals and partly in songwriting, easily. Most Quo fans would agree, I'm sure. They have their flaws, but the vocals on here are typical of the time, and that has to be taken into consideration. So, saying that, the vocals are pretty damn good.

Overall Impression — 8
I like this album. It is arguably the best Quo album, for fans. I've heard that said more than once. My favourite is Blue For You, personally. But, that said, this album shows all the evidence of techniques and song-writing that would later appear on future Quo favourites like 'Hello' and 'Blue For You', and even 'Heavy Traffic' for that matter.

2 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Ha good reveiw! What "flaws"? This album is perfect in everyway. There are no flaws! LOL I cant belive you didnt tell the story about the cover photograph! Anyway, good job!