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Celebrated and adored for his sanguine lyrics and irresistible hooks, Cat Stevens was one of the rare singer-songwriters capable of composing genuinely optimistic songs that didn't leave a sappy residue in listeners' ears. However, even a cursory listen to 1972's Catch Bull at Four proves that the Cat had seen darkness, too, and that those darker elements had become more pronounced than they'd been in the past. His vocal style shifts from the cool croon that made Tea for the Tillerman and Teaser and the Firecat top sellers to a harsher, almost growling delivery. The album's standouts--the wistful reverie "Sitting" and the delightfully infectious "Can't Keep It In"--are resolute in lyric and melody. Rambling, mystical odes such as "The Boy with a Moon & Star on His Head," "Angelsea," and "Sweet Scarlet" offer quaintly romantic imagery and lavishly undulating melodies. But it's the mercurial dynamics and driving melody of "18th Avenue (Kansas City Nightmare)" and the bitter conviction of "Ruins" that give the album a backbone and a sense of balance. --Sally Weinbach
SKU:030666261569
Cat Stevens- Catch Bull At Four
800

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