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Against The Grain CD

4.9 out of 5 stars 27 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (30 Jan. 1999)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Sony Music CMG
  • ASIN: B00000IBDW
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 27,727 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
I feel like I've waited half my life for this. I bought this album just before Christmas 75 and for me it holds a special place in my life at that time.

I bought the 99 remaster, played it once, thought it was awful and never played it again still prefering to play my worn out vinyl.

So when I heard this was being released hoped that it would at last be what it should have been all along. And it is. it's got the sound, drive, life and it's not that crappy remix which I had great delight in destroying.

Whoever had the thought to release this version thank you, you've made an old man happy.

Now to buy the rest and bin the 1999 crap.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
*** THIS REVIEW IS FOR THE 2012 CD REISSUE ***

"Against The Grain" is one of five new 2012 CD, Download and Vinyl reissues covering Rory Gallagher's 'studio' album period at Chrysalis Records between 1975 and 1979. His Polydor Label years (1971 to 1974) were released in full in January 2012 (see list below). The next set of studio and live album reissues are due in early 2013 - all supervised by Donal Gallagher - his brother, tour manager and keeper of the flame.

So what's different? In a nutshell - cheaper price, restored artwork with upgraded packaging and 2012 remastering from the original tapes. Here are the finite details...

Released 24 September 2012 in the UK (9 October 2012 in the USA) - "Against The Grain" is on Sony/Capo/Legacy 88725461492 (Barcode 887254614920) and comes in a card digipak rather than a jewel case and features two bonus tracks which originally showed up (previously unreleased at the time) on the 1999 version (49:28 minutes total playing time).

1. Let Me In
2. Cross Me Off Your List
3. Ain’t Too Good
4. Souped-Up Ford
5. Bought And Sold
6. I Take What I Want [Side 2]
7. Lost At Sea
8. All Around Man
9. Out On The Western Plain
10. At The Bottom
The original vinyl album was released October 1975 in the UK and USA on Chrysalis CHR 1098 (it charted at number 121 in the States). "Against The Grain" marked his debut for the British label Chrysalis Records.

BONUS TRACKS:
11. Cluney Blues
12. My Baby, Sure

SOUND:
When "Against The Grain" was first re-issued on CD by Da Capo in February 1999 - the tapes were remixed and remastered by Tony Arnold - giving it a sound some found a little shrill.
Read more ›
4 Comments 26 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Audio CD
I sense a much welcome reappraisal of the great man's work is taking place, and there are now some genuinely wonderful releases coming out that capture this lovable Irish bluesman at his best. Looking through the reviews I notice that this mid-70's album seems to be undervalued in amongst the better known recordings. I think that this arguably marks the end of his peak creative years and that although he continued to be an amazing live performer, his records never quite matched this quality again. Against the Grain has a real crackling electricity and vibrancy to it and the material is very strong from start to finish. There is also an accessibility and commercial spark to this album that should have broken him to a new and bigger audience, and if the BBC ever do release the OGWT concert that showcased these tracks then you'll see Rory at the very top of his game. He really pulled out all the stops on Against the Grain and captured a great sound from the studio. The keyboards of Lou Martin really gelled with Rory's guitar on this album and genuinely added to the palette of sounds and moods. There is a whiplash energy and urgency to the uptempo numbers and the soloing is concise and never outstays its welcome. Out on the Western Plain perfectly captures the myth and mystery of the old West and repeated listenings reveal depths to the song that can easily escape the casual listen. Perhaps the highlight of the album is All Around Man and Gallagher is all over the song in a real display of showmanship that captures the performative element of blues so often lacking in other white bluesmen. This album really is Gallagher off the leash in the studio and is a riot from its opening bars, to the closing plaintive cry and sincerity of At The Bottom, one of his most affecting songs and emotive vocals. No Gallagher fan should be without this.
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Format: Audio CD
I first heard of Rory Gallagher when I saw footage of him from "The Old Grey Whistle Test" which was recorded in 1976 (when I was aged one). The track was a fast rocker with a memorable riff so good my friends played it in their band. Although we did not know the name of the song! Then one day recognised it being played from a pub jukebox which featured this album.
Anyway, the track was Let Me In which is a great opener to Against The Grain. Souped Up Ford is also a super charged rocker and follows a Gallagher tradition in singing about speed (such as Country Mile).
The stand out track for me though is All Around Man, an urgent blues rocker that begins with Gallagher screaming and crying together with just his electric guitar until the band kicks in with a stop-start blues rhythm. Fantastic!
A great acoustic moment is Gallagher's version of Leadbelly's "Out On the Western Plain," with its combination of Indian chords, American Delta folk and cowboy "yippee-ki-yay" chorus. Bought and Sold, with Congas is the hit single that never was, and Gallagher records a playful cover of Sam and Dave's I Take What I Want.
Presumably the album was named Against The Grain as Rory as remaining true to the music he loved while his contempories were moving into more commerical sounds. This is one of Rory's finest, matched only by Calling Card and the two early live albums, and features a good mix of rock, delta blues and country.
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