"Nervous on the Road" is the only essential album by this group. Their first album sounded like Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young or someone--an unpleasant thing indeed. "Despite It All" has some decent country-rockin' tunes; "Silver Pistol" is all right but just about ruined by too much organ. "New Favourites" is their attempt at soul-music-lite, I suppose, and they don't do a half-bad job on the Hi Records classic "Trying to Live My Life Without You." "(What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace Love and Understanding" is a great song but Elvis Costello did it far better. But it is basically an English version--as is pub-rock in general--of music done much better by Americans, which I believe the perpetrators themselves would readily admit. However, "Nervous" does add a certain pawky humor to the basic r&b/soul/country template; no American artist would have started out a song, as does Nick Lowe, by asserting that he is "scumbag bound." And for once, the keyboardist doesn't overpower the music, leaving room for Mr. Schwarz to indulge himself with his very best Robbie Robertson imitations. They confuse the lyrics on Chris Kenner's "I Like It Like That" and bring in some pretty amusing astrological stuff on "Don't Lose Your Grip on Love." In general, "Nervous" works where most Brinsley Schwarz and pub-rock doesn't because it contains an undercurrent of something real, something very post-'60s, rueful but funny, and the unpretentiousness of its models suggests a way out of hippiedom, which of course is satirized in "Peace Love and Understanding." But as an American, I hardly see how most "pub-rock" is an improvement on the real thing; makes you ponder how the rock and roll era obscured American music like Otis Clay while upholding dreck like Jethro Tull or Yes as worthwhile stuff, and why it took English musicians to hip us to what we were doing in our own country.