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Dog Days
Atlanta Rhythm Section

Polydor 6041
Released: August 1975
Chart Peak: #113
Weeks Charted: 9

What has become known as Southern rock is now one of my favorite genres of current rock & roll, but one of the most distinctive oddities I've discovered about it is that it seems to take most bands several albums before they arrive at a level of competence that I can stand to listen to. Two or three pedestrian LPs and then boom!, the rhythm section's tight and funky, the lead guitar player has stopped imitating Dickey Betts, and they're writing and singing memorable tunes.

With Dog Days, the Atlanta Rhythm Section joins my record collection after four records. They sing of their audience:

We like raggae [sic] and we dig country
Classical music's a gas
We play the blues in three-quarter time
But they don't wanna hear that jazz
They just want boogie...

But there is no denying that they do boogie well, as "Boogie Smoogie," the tune those lyrics come from, amply demonstrates. Paul Goddard's flatulent bass and some slashing guitar work from Barry Bailey and J.R. Cobb (as well as some excellent lyrics) make for an exciting eight minutes.

Not all of the album fares as well, since the band does have a tendency to meander, but the humorous "Cuban Crisis" and the ballad "All Night Rain" provide a good change of pace. All in all, enjoyable if not earthshaking, and that's good enough for me.

- Ed Ward, Rolling Stone, 10/23/75.

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