Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Cold Blood ”Lydia Pense & Cold Blood”

Cold Blood

Lydia Pense & Cold Blood”
( LP ABC Records, 1976 )
Catalog # ABCD-917

A1 We Came Down Here & Cold Blood Smokin’ (Medley) (4:20)
A2 I Get Off On You (3:40)
A3 Drink The Wine (4:01)
A4 I Got Happiness (3:19)
A5 Feel The Fire (5:01)
B1 Let Me Be The One (4:04)
B2 Back Here Again (3:34)
B3 I Love You More Than You’ll Ever Know (5:47)
B4 Blinded By Love (3:48)
B5 It Takes A Lotta Good Lovin’ (3:31)

Producer – Bob Monaco

Format:Vinyl, LP, Gatefold

A slight improvement over Lydia from two years earlier, this album suffers from uneven material. Since the highlights are by outsiders — “Drink the Wine” by Nicholas Ashford and Valerie Simpson, and “Blinded By Love” by Allen Toussaint — the fault clearly lies with the band’s own material. It’s too bad, because singer Lydia Pense still sounds great seven years after the band’s debut album, and Cold Blood has rarely sounded as comfortable with its preferred white funk sound. The Al Kooper-penned “I Love You More Than You’ll Ever Know” gives the sultry Pense a chance to lay out and wrap herself around a slow groove for a change.
By Mark Allan (AMG)

A San Francisco-based R&B band originally formed by guitarist Larry Field as the “New Invaders” in the wake of the Summer of Love, Cold Blood had the key elements of strong female vocalist, a fine guitarist, and a powerful horn section. After successful gigs at Golden Gate Park and at the Fillmore, they were signed by impresario Bill Graham to his new San Francisco Records label, on which they released their self-titled debut in 1969. Four more albums followed over the next five years — in fact, later efforts boasted the production and musical contributions of Steve Cropper — but all were hamstrung by Graham’s underhanded distribution deals with Columbia and Atlantic.
Though the debut’s single “You’ve Got Me Humming” crawled up to number 52 on the American charts, Cold Blood seemed doomed to labor in the shadow of bands like Tower of Power, Chicago, and especially Janis Joplin. The latter comparison became endemic among critics; for although blues belter joined Field’s band as its youngest member — she had formerly been, of all things, a childhood national rollerskating champion — her magnetic stage presence established her as the band’s central force. Eventually, the band billed itself as Lydia Pense With Cold Blood, and even released an album simply titled Lydia. Joplin sensed a kindred soul; after screaming at Cold Blood for scooping her on a blistering cover of “Piece of My Heart,” she warmed to Pense enough to give her a swig of Southern Comfort.
After hitting increasingly lower tier venues in San Francisco by the late ’70s, Cold Blood disbanded for most of the next decade; Pense focused her energies on child rearing. By the late ’80s, the band slowly awoke from its long sleep, and they began regular features on California’s festival and fair circuit. A 1998 return to their Fillmore stomping ground brought out the band’s faithful.
By Paul Collins (AMG)

By Pier & Celo

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