The Black Crowes - 'Croweology' (Silver Arrow Records) Print E-mail
CD Reviews
Written by Dom Daley   
Saturday, 28 August 2010 06:00

Black_CrowesMmm where to start? When The Black Crowes first came out they were simply fantastic. Marrying the vibe of 'Exile On Main Street' with the Faces, whilst throwing in some vintage Aerosmith style tunes to the mix, they managed to release two truly fantastic albums. Then, slowly but surely they lost the musical plot a bit with some very patchy offerings. 


It wasn't long before the love went from our relationship, when they went all Casey Jones on me. They did however win back a bit of the love from me when they played Wembley with Aerosmith and seemed that the mojo they lost was back once again. It was however short lived as the buggers drifted off on a cloud of dope smoke seemingly not interested in writing a snappy three minute rock 'n' roll song any more but preferring instead to go all Val Doonican on my ass, by spending the rest of their time on the front porch in their dungarees and the only serious rocking going on would be on their rocking chairs and not with their guitars. 


Anyway what of this 'Croweology' then?


Well, it's a novel idea of revisiting their back catalogue and playing it with a full band.  Rearranging the songs in an acoustic ensemble (fine by me because one side of the band that always impressed was their ability to write some killer songs with the old acoustics), but twenty songs spanning their whole output spread out over two discs? Is this just too much?


Disc one kicks off with the fantastic 'Jealous Again' and what was a great song is still a great song and in this format sounds majestic: Sir Christopher Robinson certainly still has the pipes to deliver. But as 'Croweology' flutters by, once again it's unfortunately the same old story of when they're good they are simply superb, but when they go all extended play on me I quickly lose interest. 

Had 'Croweology' been one ten track album with all the "drawn out cobblers" removed it would have been time to champion such a wonderful creation, but sadly it's spoiled by nine minute acoustic jams. This is a shame, as the album turns into a patchy affair that blows both very hot and very cold. 'Hotel Illness' may still be a highlight, but will we ever hear a full flight Black Crowes again? Me, I won't hold my breath, but I will keep my fingers crossed in hope rather than anticipation. 


After all there will always be a space in my heart for the Brothers Robinson and "some" of their songs.