Artful Dodger - Artful Dodger | Album Review

Artful Dodger – Artful Dodger | Album Review

About Artful Dodger

Emerging from a vibrant musical backdrop, Artful Dodger initially graced the scene as “Brat”. With the ensemble of Gary Herrewig, Billy Paliselli, Gary Cox, Robb Michael Inglis, and Steve Brigida, this group showed promise right from the beginning. The bass reverberations that you might associate with tracks like “Not Quite Right” and “New York City” were from none other than Inglis, who, by 1974, had handed the baton to Steve Cooper.

The energy in “Long Time Away” captures attention, not only for its rhythmic lure but also for the band’s decision to re-record it with a peppier tempo, adding a dash more pop to its feel. It was Gary Cox’s journey to the Big Apple with a demo tape that marked a significant twist in their tale. This tape charmed the Leber-Krebs management firm, laying the path straight to Columbia Records. A union with Jack Douglas as the producer birthed their debut, self-titled album in September 1975. A name change was in order, with ‘Brat’ already taken, thus, Artful Dodger became their new identity.

Following their debut, “Honor Among Thieves” hit the stands in 1976. While it showcased a compelling power ballad “Scream”, it couldn’t replicate the success of its predecessor. However, the summer of that year was memorable as Artful Dodger shared the stage with the iconic band, KISS. Yet, the winds of change were blowing, and by their “Babes On Broadway” album in 1977, changes in lineup were evident, and commercial success was elusive.

Fast forward to the early 80s, and the band saw the exit of Paliselli. This departure didn’t deter Cooper and Brigida, who teamed up with Jeff Smith from Washington DC, and to this day, entertain as the Band of Steves. Meanwhile, Peter Bonta showcased his prowess behind the glass window of a studio, working on various projects and collaborating with notable artists like Mary Chapin Carpenter.

In a heartwarming turn of events, the dawn of the 90s witnessed an Artful Dodger reunion in Cleveland, marking the 25th anniversary of the Cleveland Agora. Their music found its way back to fans, with several reissues of their classic albums in the subsequent years. A noteworthy nod to their impact came with the celebration of the Cleveland Agora’s 40th anniversary, where they once again enthralled audiences.

While the band’s legacy remains etched in the annals of rock history, it’s essential to remember the contributions of each member. Tragically, in 2012, Gary Cox, one of the original guitar maestros of the band, passed away. Yet, the spirit of Artful Dodger persists, as they continue to engage with fans online, reminding everyone of the timeless nature of their music.

Artful Dodger – Artful Dodger Album Review

Artful Dodger - Artful Dodger | Front Cover | Album Review

From the vast expanse of musical galaxies, Artful Dodger’s self-titled album doesn’t just shine—it dazzles with the luminosity of a cosmic event. The craftsmanship poured into the songwriting is evident in every track; not a single filler in sight, only premium musical content. What sets Artful Dodger apart is their enviable musical prowess—a skill level that many contemporaries could only aspire to reach.

Their repertoire seamlessly transitions between robust hard rock rhythms and soulful ballads, each infused with irresistible hooks that linger. One of the album’s defining characteristics is the rich vocal harmonies. They serve as a harmonious backdrop to the raw, earthy vocals of lead singer, Billy Paliselli, creating a balance that’s both powerful and melodious.

Yet, in the whirlwind of mid-70’s music trends and shifts, this gem somehow slipped through the cracks. But that’s the thing about timeless treasures—they always find their way back to the spotlight. Whether you’re a seasoned music enthusiast, a budding collector, or just someone with an ear for great rock, do yourself a favor: dive into the world of Artful Dodger’s debut. It’s not just an album; it’s an experience, waiting to be rediscovered.

Artful Dodger - Artful Dodger | Back Cover | Album Review

Artful Dodger – Artful Dodger Track list

Immersing ourselves in the nostalgic sounds of the 70s, the self-titled debut album by Artful Dodger emerges as a shimmering beacon amidst the rock anthems of the time. Each track, meticulously crafted, encapsulates the very essence of a musical decade where emotions ran deep and melodies were infectious. As we traverse this sonic landscape, we’re invited to relive the captivating moments and unique artistry that made this era unforgettable. From the impassioned guitar riffs to the evocative lyrics, prepare to be taken on a musical journey that celebrates the rich tapestry of 70s rock.

  1. Wayside
  2. You Know It’s Alright
  3. It’s Over
  4. Follow Me
  5. Long Time Away
  6. Think Think
  7. Silver and Gold
  8. Things I’d Like to Do Again
  9. Waiting Place
  10. New York City

And as the final chords fade, one can’t help but marvel at the musical voyage Artful Dodger’s debut has taken us on. It’s a harmonious blend of energetic rock beats and soulful melodies, echoing the spirit and passion of the 70s. Albums like this stand as a testament to the golden age of rock ‘n’ roll, offering both a nostalgic trip for those who lived through the era and an enchanting discovery for new listeners. In a world constantly evolving and changing its musical preferences, the ageless charm of Artful Dodger’s debut assures us that some classics will forever remain etched in the annals of rock history.

Artful Dodger – Artful Dodger Album Review Conclusion

In the vast universe of 70s rock, Artful Dodger’s self-titled debut holds its own as a luminous gem, embodying the raw passion and unbridled energy that defined the era. From impeccable songwriting to harmonic crescendos, it’s an album that seamlessly bridges the past and present, inviting listeners of all generations to revel in its timeless allure. Whether you’re a rock aficionado or a curious explorer, this album stands as a poignant reminder of the golden age of rock ‘n’ roll and the undying spirit of music that resonates, inspires, and captivates. Dive into the world of Artful Dodger and let the music rekindle that fiery passion within.

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