Top positive review
12 people found this helpful
One of the best-selling albums of all time - deservedly so
on 6 July 2004
Unless I'm mistaken, Cracked Rear View still has to be one of the most successful debut albums ever released. This album was huge, boasting several hit singles and getting more airplay than just about anything else out there for months on end. Strangely enough, the group only managed one small blip on the radar in the years following this release, but that doesn't take anything away from the success of this, their first and most successful commercial release. Being from North Carolina, I felt a special affinity for these South Carolina brethren of mine, and indeed at one point I actually acquired the moniker of Hootie myself (for reasons I could probably not explain even if I could remember them). I also loved the obvious influence of Bob Dylan in their music; heck, these guys actually incorporated some of the lyrics from Dylan's classic Tangled Up in Blue in their hit single Only Wanna Be With You.
Speaking of hit singles, Hold My Hand and Let Her Cry (along with Only Wanna Be With You) dominated the airwaves for a few weeks short of forever, and I do believe Time also registered on the charts. I seem to remember Hannah Jane also coming out as a single - if it didn't, it certainly should have as this, the album's leadoff track, in many ways typifies the type of music Hootie and the guys perfected. Running From an Angel also stands head and shoulders above most of the songs recorded during the somewhat dead years of the mid-90s. Darius Rucker's voice just has a special quality impossible to describe - soothing in a sandpapery sort of way. He could be the king of the party, and he could also touch something in your soul when his musical mood turned melancholy. If you secretly search the CD collection of anyone between 30 and 50, you will most likely find this little gem there somewhere, as it sold upteen millions of copies. You don't have that kind of success without something extraordinarily unique that appeals to a wide cross-section of music fans. Cracked Rear View was a great album in 1994, it's a great album now, and it will be a great album for all the years to come.