Sunday, July 08, 2007

Hook - Hooked! (1969)

With a crashing organ chord, and a cry of "GOOD GOD!!", the Hook returns with a triumphant second disc. Give them credit for recognizing their limitations. For their second album, the group replaced their drummer, and added a keyboard player. While still missing a bona-fide songwriter, the result is a fuller, more varied sound that still manages to retain their astronomical energy level.

The front side presents them at the absolute top of their game. Three blistering rockers ("Go", a stretched out remake of the debut's "Son of Fantasy", and a cover of The Kinks"You're Lookin' Fine" that gives new meaning to the concept of "potency"), and a surprisingly effective ballad ("Magic in the Air"), that should have been a breakout hit.

Side two cools off a bit, bracketed by two less than stellar compositions ("Hook Can Cook", and "You Don't Have to Stay", the latter an example of a needless misogyny that is sporadically apparent in their catalogue), but redeems itself with a cover of Ike & Tina Turner's "All Around the World", the engaging "A Beautiful Tomorrow", and the slight but endearing "Love Theme in E Major".

Unfortunately, after one further pleasant but forgettable non-album single, the Hook disbanded, with bassist Buddy Sklar becoming a ubiquitous session musician, and keyboardist Dennis Provisor eventually turning up in The Grass Roots. The band's entire catalogue begs for a legitimate CD reissue (which could be accomplished by way of a single disc). The Hook may not have been the best band of their era, but they made the most of what they had, which makes them one of the most compelling. ochsfan

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3 comments:

yflduM.Mudfly said...

Thanks for the post, I have their first album, "The Hook Will Grab You" and it is excellent as well!

Anonymous said...

ThanX !,

I found at eBay the Tracks:

1. Go
2. You're Lookin' Fine
3. There's Magic In The Air
4. Son Of Fantasy Il
5. Hook Can Cook
6. Love Theme In Major
7. A Beautiful Tomorrow
8. You Need People
9. All Around The World
10.You Don't Have To Stay

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this Hook album, very cool! I also already had the other album, all great stuff.
Now, this is not in any way complaining to you, but it bugs me that bootleg labels like Progressive Line will put out stuff without taking even a basic consideration of removing vinyl pops from the sound - very easy to do and only took me a couple of hours to listen through to each track carefully and clean them up a bit. You'd think if someone's going to go to the trouble of putting something out on cd - even if not legitimately - that they'd try to make it sound as clean as they can. It doesn't take some multi-thousand dollar process to do a better job than Progressive Line and often Akarma, notorious bootleggers both!
Anyway, thanks again Lisa for all the wonderful music you've shared with us. At least thanks to you we don't need to hand over money to bootleggers to get to hear some of this stuff. If I'm going to buy a cd, I'd rather some of the money goes to the artist, so I'm glad to avoid supporting bootleg labels when I can.