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Filet of Soul - Freedom (1969)

"Freedom" was different from a lot of era albums in that it showcased a largely original set of material. Largely penned by member Mike Peace, the album showcased an interesting mix of blue-eyed soul ("Treat Her Right"), top-40 pop ("Here's Where I Get Off") and tougher rock material ("Come To Me"). As lead singer Peace had a great voice that was more than capable of handling the band's diverse repertoire. It was all performed with the kind of naive enthusiasm that more than compensated for whatever performance short comings the band had and for the somewhat low-fi sound and production. Interestingly virtually every one of the twelve songs had commercial potential, but these guys were at their best when playing straight ahead rock - the wah-wah guitar propelled title track, "Big City USA", the fuzz-driven "Standin At the Wrong Machine" and the raging garage screamer "Steppin Into You Fire". There was also a nice cover of the Zombies' "Tell Her No". Certainly not the most original album you've ever heard, but thoroughly charming and one that I continually spin. The b & w cover is due to a color sleeve being beyond the band's means, after purchasing the rights to the album from Chess, who chose not to release it. (zosopat)

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