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Cahoots Import

3.6 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews

Price: CDN$ 19.00
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58th Annual GRAMMY Awards
Discover this year's nominees on CD and Vinyl, including Album of the Year, Artist of the Year, Best New Artist of the Year, and more. Learn more

Frequently Bought Together

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (July 23 1996)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Indent Series
  • ASIN: B000005JJB
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews
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1. Life Is A Carnival
2. When I Paint My Masterpiece
3. Last Of The Blacksmiths
4. Where Do We Go From Here?
5. 4% Pantomime
6. Shoot Out In China Town
7. The Moon Struck One
8. Thinkin' Out Loud
9. Smoke Signal
10. Volcano
11. The River Hymn

Product Description

Product Description

Limited Edition U.S. distributed edition at lower price! Japanese pressing of this album comes housed in a miniature LP sleeve. 2008.

Here's where the Band stumbled. This 1971 lapse followed two consensus classics (Music from Big Pink and The Band) and the dicier but still worthy Stage Fright. Consequently, expectations were high. But, despite moments of excellence ("Life Is a Carnival," "When I Paint My Masterpiece," their first Dylan cover since their debut), primary songwriter Robbie Robertson repeatedly comes up short. "Last of the Blacksmiths," "Where Do We Go from Here," and "River Hymn" are overwrought attempts to recapture the unaffected longing for the past that marked the first two albums, while the likes of "Smoke Signal" and "Volcano" are merely forgettable. Still, Van Morrison's rambunctious duet with Richard Manual on "4% Pantomime" and the weird "Moon Struck One" help make Cahoots a worthwhile curio for those interested in digging deep into the Band songbook. --Steven Stolder

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
...the album is good. A step down from the previous album? Sure, but when only two of your five members are truly inspired to work, you are going to run into problems. Of the eleven tracks, five are quite strong, three are quite weak, and the others traipse between.
The album's like a journey through the world. "Life Is A Carnival" is the fourth straight brilliant opener that evokes New Orleans (down to the Allen Toussaint-arranged horns). "When I Paint My Masterpiece" is a brilliant Dylan-penned second track that evokes Europe (dig Manuel's drumming). "4% Pantomime", with Belfast's own George Ivan Morrison on second vocal, really evokes the musician lifestyle, frantic, manic and drunken. "Thinkin' Out Loud" has a great piano part and a nice metallic (upright?) bass part. "Volcano" features a strong vocal by Rick Danko and great horns by Garth Hudson. They all get five out of five stars.
"The Moon Struck One", to contrast those first five, blows. The lyrics are the worst ever. It's the only Band track I truly dislike. I give it one out of five stars. "Last of the Blacksmiths" and "Where Do We Go From Here?" sound uninspired. Out of five stars, they get 2.5 stars.
"Shoot Out In Chinatown", "Smoke Signal" and "The River Hymn" are decent enough, but are a step down from "Carnival", "Masterpiece", "Pantomime", "Thinkin" and "Volcano". Out of five stars, they probably all get 3.5 stars.
Averaging that out, you get an average of 4.15 out of 5 stars. A step down from the previous three, but worth a listen.
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Format: Audio CD
Most people that listened to the Band's fourth LP confess that this was by far the most inferior of the albums made by the original lineup. For one, this was made in the wake of three staggering predecessors MUSIC FROM BIG PINK (1968), THE BAND (1969) and STAGE FRIGHT (1970). By the time this album was recorded, the Band had been off the road for a while, with some major touring under their belt (including famous appearances at Woodstock, Isle of Wight '69 and Hollywood Bowl '70 with Miles Davis). Apparently the Band reentered the recording studio rather disillusioned, distant, uninspired and even tired (as evidenced by the theme of CAHOOTS back cover shot.
On first listen the album one can get frustrated on how unmemorable the songs seem to be. Well actually the album opens right up to par with a dynamite "Life is a Carnival," a catchy tune right up there with the Band's best work. "Masterpiece" is another famous classic with a fine arrangement, but it obviously was written by some other songwriter. That leaves us with the rest of the album, and I confess that it took me a while to get used to some/any of the songs. There is definitely a problem with the songwriting. However, there are hidden gems worth seeking out that make the album worthwhile. "Smoke Signal" and "Shootout in China Town" are songs they actually played live early on, and you can hear that the studio versions are evidence that they have potential for development on stage. They are actually catchy songs and hummable if you give them a chance.
The Band's playing is first rate which helps, and Levon Helm's singing always gives the tune its distinctive sound.
The Robertson/Morrison collaboration "4% Pantomime" is delightful too.
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Format: Audio CD
So CAHOOTS may be the lowest rated Band album, big deal! There are gems here that folks are overlooking. The first two tracks are hard to top, I'll give you that, but why is "Bessie Smith", "Don't Do It", and "The River Hymn" considered junk? The songs on this record put many others to shame. And there is no reason why it shouldn't be bought and enjoyed. It's the best Band album I have ever heard!
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Format: Audio CD
Something went way wrong here. On the heels of "Big Pink," "The Band," and the somewhat underrated masterpiece "Stage Fright," the Band issued this album, which mostly demonstrated that Robbie Robertson was running short of ideas, and the Band had forgotten how to make magic in the studio.
Which is not to say... if this album were released today, it might be rock album of the year. Any band recording today that put out an album with these songs would be at the top of the heap: "Life is a Carnival," "Smoke Signal," "Moon Struck One," "
4% Pantomime," "When I Paint My Masterpiece," and "The River Hymn" all have something wonderful to offer. But unfortunately, the group diluted the impact of these performances with not one, but three of their worst songs and worst performances ever -- "Last of the Blacksmiths," "Where Do We Go From Here" and "Shootout in Chinatown." These are cringeworthy -- almost parodies of what was great about the Band on its first three albums.
Luckily, the followed this with the indispensable "Rock of Ages," the musically dazzling "Northern Lights, Southern Cross," and the disconnected but modestly enjoyable "Islands."
Look, these guys were brilliant. Richard Manuel is one of the greatest singers of the 20th Century, Robertson was one of the most innovative guitarists, Hudson could do no wrong on the keyboards, and Helm and Danko formed a wonderful duet pair. All of those attributes are on display here. But, the bad stuff is really bad.
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