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PAUL McCARTNEY & WINGS
VENUS & MARS
Released - May 27, 1975 on Capital Records. Produced by Paul McCartney
Paul McCartney - Lead & Backing Vocals, Bass, Rhythm & Lead Guitars, Piano, Organ
Denny Lane - Rhythm Guitars, Keyboards, Backing Vocals, Lead
Vocals on "Spirits of Ancient Egypt"
Geoff Britton - Drums on "Love in Song",
"Letting Go" and "Medicine Jar"
All songs written by Paul McCartney except: "Medicine Jar" written by Jimmy McCulloch & Colin Allen, and "Crossroads" by Tony Hatch
Guess you can call Venus and Mars a comeback album for Paul McCartney's band Wings, since the album before, Band On The Run was really a solo McCartney LP, regardless of who it was credited to being put out by.
With its first two numbers, Venus and Mars starts off with a double salute at rock concerts and the build-up so many fans have before a show begins. Its very short title cut, "Venus and Mars", should had just been a part of the second song "Rock Show", and how come I have a feeling from looking at its lyrics that it more than likely once was. In fact, it comes back as a reprise six tracks later, but it isn't really the same song, as it only has the same title at that point. Not sure the reasoning in this, but what ever. Getting back to "Rock Show", this is by far the best song on the album, just filled with all kinds of energry, something several of the other songs on the LP lack.
"Magneto and Titanium Man" is my next favorite song found on here, full of fun even if the tale the lyrics tell is a bit on the silly side. Then the next best number is the slow and mellow, "Letting Go", sang in a way only McCartney can sound, stretching out the lyrics so you can understand his true feelings. I know many McCartney fans would rate the New Orleans sounding "Listen To What the Man Said" higher than what I gave it; it's better than okay, true, but not a ten in my book, either.
I guess Paul wanted to show everybody that this was a true band album, as he gave one of his songs to Denny Lane to sing, that being "Spirits of Ancient Egypt". Then he let his other guitarist, Jimmy McCulloch, sing lead on an anti-drug song that Jimmy wrote, "Medicine Jar". A very good song, the sad thing being was that McCulloch didn't take his own advice, which he wrote and sang about in the song, as he was unable to keep his own hands out of the medicine jar; he would died from an overdose of pills just four years later.
As I already mentioned, a few songs on here do lack a bit of energry, but overall, not a bad LP put out by Paul and his band.
- Keno 2005
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