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Cabbage Alley

The Meters Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: 22.90
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Frequently Bought Together

Cabbage Alley + Rejuvenation + Struttin'
Price For All Three: 36.60

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  • Rejuvenation 6.50
  • Struttin' 7.20

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Product details

  • Audio CD (9 July 2001)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Warner
  • ASIN: B00005KB3Z
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 367,846 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. You've Got To Change
2. Stay Away
3. Birds
4. The Flower Song
5. Soul Island
6. Do The Dirt
7. Smiling
8. Lonesome And Unwanted People
9. Gettin' Funkier All The Time
10. Cabbage Alley
11. Chug Chug Chug-A-Lug
12. Chug Chug Chug-A-Lug

Product Description

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Cabbage Alley - The Meters 6 Mar 2014
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
A Funk Classic - The Players all meld perfectly - The compositions build perfectly - The Chili Peppers were obviously listening - THIS BAND WERE AS IMPORTANT AS PARLIAMENT/FUNKADELIC - DESERVES TO BE OWNED BY EVERYONE WITH AN EAR FOR QUALITY....
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Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars  5 reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Meters' ambitious "Cabbage Alley" 17 July 2006
By J P Ryan - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
To anyone already familiar with The Meters from their three seminal Josie albums - "The Meters" (May 1969), "Look-Ka Py Py" (December 1969), and "Struttin'" (June 1970) - "Cabbage Alley," (May 1972), the band's debut for the the Reprise label, must have felt like a radical departure. More than half of its ten tracks feature vocals, and the exploratory mood and stylistic range display a band evolving creatively and unafraid to take risks. During the Josie era (which began with the first of nearly a dozen hit singles, 'Sophisticated Cissy', in the Fall of 1968), and closed with Josie's bankruptcy less than three years later), The Meters' effortless telepathy and dazzling rhythmic inventiveness helped shape 'funk' and revitalized the New Orleans r & b scene, producing 50 or so tracks, nearly every one a marvel of concision and creativity within a tight formal framework. Clearly, "Cabbage Alley" was deliberately intended to be heard as a unified album, and unlike the Josie classics, features no obvious hit singles ('Do The Dirt', a funky near-sendup of dance records, bombed). Sundazed, which has reissued the entire Meters catalog, includes two bonus tracks from a killer single issued early in 1973, a few months after this album, "Chug Chug Chug-A-Lug (Push N' Shove) Parts 1 & 2." They are a highlight of this expanded edition.
In retrospect, and after hearing The Meters' late period Josie singles only recently collected on the "Zony Mash" CD, these changes seem less surprising. When the Meters had national hits with their early classics "Sophisticated Cissy" (November 1968), its even more successful followup "Cissy Strut" (March '69), "Look Ka Py Py" (October '69) and the rest, black music was still primarily marketed to a singles market. Curtis Mayfield, Stevie Wonder, Sly & The Family Stone, and Marvin Gaye were all instrumental in a shift towards using the album as unified artistic statement. Also, the Sundazed reissue campaign has made it clear that the Meters' integration of lyrics, vocals, additional percussion, and influences ranging from rock (Hendrix, the Stones), Caribbean, Kenny Burrell, and beyond are already evident in those later Josie recordings. "Struttin'" offered several tracks with group vocals ("Handclapping Song") or solo leads by Art Neville ("Darling Darling Darling"). And the revelatory collection "Zony Mash," a previously unissued fourth Josie album of sorts, collects both a- and b-sides of four Josie singles issued after "Struttin'," between September 1970 and September 1971, and these non-album sides include killer instrumentals like the wah-wah driven funk of "Zony Mash" and "Sassy Lady" as well as vocal tracks such as "Message From The Meters" and the structurally complex "I Need More Time" clearly predict directions the band was exploring before they signed with Reprise. What is perhaps most distinctive about "Cabbage Alley" is the sound - Ziggy Modeliste's drums on those Josie albums is bone dry, hard, with a visceral presence that enhances his astonishing, always shifting rhythm patterns, atop deep bass grooves by George Porter and the direct presentation of Leo Nocentelli's arsenal of effects - chicken scratch funk rhythm, jazzy Wes Montgomery-inspired soloing, stinging yet dry lead statements. And always, the churning, rhythmic organ of Art Neville. On "Cabbage Alley" the mix is cleaner (even when the music is grungey), Modeliste's kit sound less resonant. This approach makes it the perfect transitional work before the group's Reprise-era masterpiece, "Rejuvenation" (1974). Once one gets used to the differences however, "Cabbage Alley," though slightly uneven (how could so eclectic a work not be?) proves highly rewarding.
Even when the material is slight, the performances as welll as the musical textures offer fascinating listening. "Cabbage Alley" opens with a pair of hard rockers written by Nocentelli - each running over five minutes. "You Got To Change" suggests hard rock influenced by Led Zeppelin and Band Of Gypsys, but the dense interplay of guitars, various percussion instruments (and yes, Cyril Neville, who appears here, was already adding congas to the later Josie singles), keyboards, and the never-static rhythm section stamp this as an invigorating, listenable funk gem with a long, improvisational instumental section (think of the Stones' "Can't You Hear Me Knocking" meets "Voodoo Chile") that fades too soon. "Stay Away" despite a pedestrian lyric, simply amazes - Leo Nocentelli had likely heard early Funkadelic, but the virtuosity and imagination - instrumental and production - on display here create a powerful soundscape with hallucinatory, dub-like effects. After these two heavy hitters Art's interpretation of Neil Young's gorgeous "Birds" is a dramatic shift, and Leo follows this this with the jazzy, mellow (but splendid) instrumental "Flower Song." "Do The Dirt" is a return to simpler themes, musically and lyrically, but it works as a funky, tongue-in-cheek dance number, at 2:35 the shortest track on the set. Art's "Smiling" is another solid instrumental that shows off the band's cohesive interplay. "Lonesome and Unwanted People" is Nocentelli's latest excercise in social commentary, musically stately and elegant. The lyrics are heartfelt,if not very subtle. My favorite track on the set is "Gettin' Funkier All The Time," and like many Meters songs it fades too soon for my taste; this deep groove stunner evokes Sly's "Riot" (and in a reigned-in way, Miles Davis circa '72), George Porter popping his bass while the whole band simply does what it does best, turning in an irresistable and virtuosic performance around a simple vamp. The original album closes with a splendid version of Professor Longhair's "Hey Now Baby" that doubles as title track. The two sided bonus single, "Chug Chug Chug-A Lug" (issued early in 1973), written by Modeliste and Nocentelli, elevates this set with an infectious groove that portends the more integrated funk of 1974's classic "Rejuvenation" while evoking the group's classic Josie hits, and both parts feature some terrific dirty soloing from Nocentelli.
All in all, this set may be off-putting at first to those familiar with the Meters' Josie classics, but deeper listening reveals marvelous telepathic interplay, and "Cabbage Alley" has given me much pleasure. Fortunately, the Meters still had more great music in them before they ended their career a few years later in bitterness and frustration.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Meters Major Label Debut 23 May 2001
By big s - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Many fans of the Meters are of the opinion that Rejuvenation is the best LP from the group's Reprise tenure. I am not one of them. Cabbage Alley is the best LP the Meters made for Reprise. The songs are well written and compact, which differs from Rejuvenation which relied more on the groups musical dexterity. Cabbage Alley displays the writing talents of guitarist Leo Nocentelli. He creates songs and arragements that really dig into the soul of a person. The Meters, who are known for their funk tunes, show a conscience and tenderness on this album without sacrificing the funk they delivered on there three Josie albums. Cabbage Alley is artistry at its finest.
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars We have been waiting years for this re-release 21 Aug 2000
By William Jones - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Any fan of the Meters has been appalled by their inability to find this LP. Now that it's out on CD, many dreams have been realized. Unfortunately, my LP copies of Fire on the Bayou, Rejuvenation, and New Directions just lost value; apparently Warner Brothers is re-issuing their whole Meters catalog. The earlier recordings, originally on Josie, consisting mainly of tight, off center funk instrumentals, are also now available. For an introduction to the Meters, one should start with Cabbage Alley and Struttin', which showcase two very different, though equally great, Meters groups.
5.0 out of 5 stars but I wish I still had my vinyl 9 Feb 2014
By Raymond L. Uffelman - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This got some reasonable play in it's day on WMMR outta Phila. Made me seek out all the material I could find and somewhere have a bunch of Josie flip sides. Absolutely my favorite from the era at WB when they tried to make Beefhart a commercial entity too.
5.0 out of 5 stars The Meters Had To Change 12 Dec 2007
By Andre S. Grindle - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
It had become apparent to The Meters that by the time of their Struttin' album their award winning funk sound was bordering on formulaic. So as any creative people will do The Meters decided to take their funk to a new place.'Cabbage Alley' consequently finds the band keeping their sound intact but changing a lot of their style and instrumentation. This album makes more of an effort to create coherant song structures and vocal arrangements. Another surprise is that especially on the driving "You've Got To Change (You've Got To Reform)" and "Stay Away" there's a prominant influence of the funk/acid rock fusion with loud drums and a grittier guitar sound-more in keeping with Sly,Jimi Hendrix and Funkadelic then Crescent City R&B. The feeling is kept throughout Neil Young's "Stay Away",which retains a lot of the country-rock flavor of the original,only with far rawer singing and more of a groove to the rhythm. The ballads "The Flower Song","Birds" and "Lonesome And Unwanted People" are another surprising fusion of southern grit and windy city style "northern" soul,on the later delivering a somewhat morbid lyric. "Soul Island","Do The Dirt" and the playful title song find The Meters still in a strong mode-a funk SONG as opposed to a groove and all three are great! Of course they will never abandon the funk completely as "Gettin' Funkier All The Time" and the two part bonus track "Clug,Clug Chug-A-Lug" proves but even still the guitars are harder driving and the sound fuller. Fans of The Meters earlier,stripped down "stuttering guitar" funk formula might be surprised by the many changes in direction this album presents. But even though The Meters would only adapt parts of this sound on future releases (mainly the stronger compositional aspects) 'Cabbage Alley' shows The Meters were far more then just a funky jam band and could easily adapt themselves to the needs of Ricky Vincents "united funk" era that the music was just entering into when this album was released.
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