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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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on 11 February 2002
This is Daryl Hall and John Oates' second album (their first is the completely unacknowledged Whole Oates). Abandoned Luncheonette continues some of the folk sounds that its predecessor had but with much more success, especially on the charming songs "When the Morning Comes," "Had I Known You Better Then," "Las Vegas Turnaround," and the rugged "I'm Just a Kid (Don't Make Me Feel Like a Man)." The rest of this album, though, is something of an encyclopedia of the sounds Hall and Oates would cover in their later years, from the wonderful R&B cut "She's Gone," to the hard-rock of "Lady Rain," and the funk/hillbilly sounds of "Everytime I Look At You." Particularly impressive is the phenomenal title cut, covering light jazz and rock with stirring vocal performances. A terrific, terrific listen.
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on 11 February 2011
Brilliant collection of songs from before Hall and Oates went global later in the decade. I had read the positive reviews after hearing "She's Gone" on the radio one day. Although I was familiar with the H2O era stuff, this had been described by other reviewers as a "folk" sounding album, which piqued my curiosity.
I think to understand that description you need to realise that when most Americans refer to folk music they use it as a catch-all for any acoustic based stuff. To me this is no more folk than Jackson Browne (an obvious influence on here) or Bruce Hornsby.
So if you like Jackson Browne with a Soul influence you can't go wrong with this. I've been playing it non-stop for the past week, which is VERY unusual for me. Really great tunes, lyrics and hooks. Can't recommend highly enough.
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on 26 October 2005
I'm always suspicious when reviewers profess to love the early albums of big mainstream acts, as being somehow more authentic, and artistically untainted by commercial considerations. But that is emphatically the case with Abandoned Luncheonette, as strange an album as ever rode out of the early 1970s and compared with the duo's later pop machine ghastliness, a real revelation. The pair sing with genuine warmth and expression, and on the standout tracks - of course "She's Gone", but also charming fragments like opener "When The Morning Comes" and "I'm Just A Kid Don't Make me Feel Like A Man" - with an engaging sort of wide-eyed, Philly soul enthusiasm. Subsequent events managed to knock all that nonsense out of them, and make them into proper chart-toppers; nevertheless, "Abandoned Luncheonette" - which boasts an abolutely stellar musical line-up, fact fans - remains the album by which they must be judged, and which shows up awfulness like "Maneater" for the rubbish it so patently was.
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on 18 May 2012
I bought this album on vinyl in the 70's when it was released. Of course as time plods by and new types of media format are exploited, some of your favourite albums get forgotton either in the mists of time, or the rush to keep up with technology. Cassette players, then cd players, blue ray,computers, they all seem to get in the way somehow. Then I realised that I had not heard this fine album for some time. I purchased it on cd, and WOW! What an album. It stands the all too familier 'not as good as I thought' thinking, and still stands out as a brilliant soundtrack to 'proper' music from the 70's. Out in 1973, this was their second album, and today still remains one of the best they ever composed. In fact Hall and Oates agree. To say the music is soft, would be too simplistic. It covers a soul/accoustic genre that is easy to listen too whilst giving the listener plenty of musical innuendo and depth. I would personnally recommend this to anyone to add to their album collection.
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on 5 July 2016
I had this on cassette tape for many years but it gave up the ghost a couple of years ago - I think this was one of their best albums ever and is very enjoyable from start to finish - the purchase was a previously used CD but was delivered almost as brand new - the seller delivered very quickly in good packaging and deserves support. I extremely happy with the price and quality of this purchase
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on 21 August 2008
If you only buy one H&O this is probably the best. The lyrics are actually worth listening to and its great to listen to while sitting on a coach or train on a long journey, on your own and pretending you have/had a life ...
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on 25 May 2009
I bought this album in vinyl when it first came out in the 70's. The young guy who worked in our local record store told me he had this import in that he thought would be just up my street. He played a little for me and I was hooked and bought it.

I think it's their best album ever, it's hard to list my favourite tracks I don't think there's a bad one on the album but if I had to I'd chose, the title track, Had I Known You Better Then, I'm Just a Kid, Las Vegas Turnaround, When the Morning Comes and She's Gone, but really I love them all. Later when they got so much more commercial I found it rather sad.
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on 30 June 2010
Wonderful second album from a unique act who created almost a new genre for themselves with their wispy, light soul melodies. Has a nice non commercial sound that they didn't keep for too long afterwards. That's why this album is essential listening, it isn't glossy or commercial, it's laid back, airy, and fits the image of the cover perfectly.

She's Gone is a gem and was the one sign of their heavily commercialised future to come, but it's still a gem, probably the best song they ever did, imo. The rest nestles comfortably into a more laid back, unpolished sound coming from a variety of influences yet still seeming a style all their own. A lovely background album for when you're in that mood, uplifting yet drifty and airy all at once. Hall & Oates were never better, more polished yes, but never better than this.
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on 10 July 2006
The production, songwriting and arrangements come together wonderfully for this jazz tinged folk/pop/rock album which nudges in to Steely Dan territory with the complexity and playing.

The title track is a gentle track building to an understated crescendo. Im just a Kid and She's Gone completing a strong central trio.

To my ears - much more sophisticated than their later pop hits of I Can't Go/Maneater etc which were good in their own way. I'd place this much closer to the likes of Steely Dan & Stephen Bishop than their later more electronic based stuff.
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on 17 November 2015
Early on in Hall and Oates career they came up with this lovely quirky collection of songs. 'She's Gone', a true soul classic is here but also 'When the Morning Comes' with a fresh 'west coast' feel and the title track which is a cute Dean Friedmanesque story song. I've listened to this album so many times since it arrived a few weeks ago.
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