Monday, January 4, 2021

The Flying Burrito Brothers - The Gilded Palace Of Sin (1969 us, iconic hugely influential country rock statement, 2017 SACD)

By 1969, Gram Parsons had already built the foundation of the country-rock movement through his work with the International Submarine Band and the Byrds, but his first album with the Flying Burrito Brothers, The Gilded Palace of Sin, was where he revealed the full extent of his talents, and it ranks among the finest and most influential albums the genre would ever produce. As a songwriter, Parsons delivered some of his finest work on this set; "Hot Burrito No. 1" and "Hot Burrito No. 2" both blend the hurt of classic country weepers with a contemporary sense of anger, jealousy, and confusion, and "Sin City" can either be seen as a parody or a sincere meditation on a city gone mad, and it hits home in both contexts.

Parsons was rarely as strong as a vocalist as he was here, and his covers of "Dark End of the Street" and "Do Right Woman" prove just how much he had been learning from R&B as well as C&W. And Parsons was fortunate enough to be working with a band who truly added to his vision, rather than simply backing him up; the distorted swoops of Sneaky Pete Kleinow's fuzztone steel guitar provides a perfect bridge between country and psychedelic rock, and Chris Hillman's strong and supportive harmony vocals blend flawlessly with Parsons' (and he also proved to be a valuable songwriting partner, collaborating on a number of great tunes with Gram). While The Gilded Palace of Sin barely registered on the pop culture radar in 1969, literally dozens of bands (the Eagles most notable among them) would find inspiration in this music and enjoy far greater success. But no one ever brought rock and country together quite like the Flying Burrito Brothers, and this album remains their greatest accomplishment. 
by Mark Deming
1. Christine's Tune (Gram Parsons, Chris Hillman) - 3:05
2. Sin City (Gram Parsons, Chris Hillman) - 4:12
3. Do Right Woman (Chips Moman, Dan Penn) - 3:57
4. Dark End Of The Street (Spooner Oldham, Dan Penn) - 3:59
5. My Uncle (Gram Parsons, Chris Hillman) - 2:41
6. Wheels (Chris Hillman, Gram Parsons) - 3:05
7. Juanita (Chris Hillman, Gram Parsons) - 2:32
8. Hot Burrito #1 (Chris Ethridge, Gram Parsons) - 3:41
9. Hot Burrito #2 (Chris Ethridge, Gram Parsons) - 3:20
10.Do You Know How It Feels (Gram Parsons, Barry Goldberg) - 2:10
11.Hippie Boy (Chris Hillman, Gram Parsons) - 5:00

The Flying Burrito Brothers
*Gram Parsons -Vocals, Acoustic Guitar, Piano, Organ
*Chris Hillman - Electric And Acoustic Guitar, Harmony, Vocals, Mandolin
*"Sneaky" Pete Kleinow - Pedal Steel Guitar
*Chris Ethridge - Bass Guitar, Backing Vocals, Piano
*Jon Corneal - Drums
*Thomas "Popeye" Phillips - Drums 
*Eddie Hoh - Drums 
*Sam Goldstein - Drums 
*David Crosby - Backing Vocals 
*Hot Burrito Chorus - Backing Vocals 

Related Acts
1968  The Byrds - Sweetheart Of The Rodeo  (Double Disc Set)