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#101 – Fresh Cream (Cream)

In 124-100, Top 150 on November 2, 2012 at 7:51 pm

Okay, it’s been way too long since I’ve posted anything. Truthfully, I’ve listened to this album, Fresh Cream, a few times, but didn’t know what to write about it. And it’s definitely grown on me, as much of the music I’ve listened to does after a while.

So yes, Cream. This album was released in January 1967, although the UK version was released one month prior. It included one track that the US version does not. The US version includes the single, “I Feel Free”, where the UK version includes “Spoonful” instead. Just prior to the release of the UK album, “I Feel Free” was released as a single. For Cream, this album came as their debut record so it makes sense that it did well – it was released by a new supergroup of Eric Clapton, Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker.

To me, the album is good, but not phenomenal. Yet, it’s rated higher than Disraeli Gears on the list of the greatest albums. “I Feel Free”, “Four Until Late” and “Toad” are my favorites tracks on the album. The other tracks seem a bit lack luster to me. I feel like the second side of the LP release is where the real magic starts to happen. It’s almost like the first half of the LP was a warm up until you flip the record over and get to hear the real juicy stuff on side two. And on the second side of the LP you really get a sense of diversity on the album. Ranging from the airy amp up anthem, “I Feel Free”, which starts off the entire album, to the country feeling in “Four Until Late”, to the more classic rock sound in “Toad”…this album definitely delivers a sense of diversity by the end.

Many of the tracks I really enjoy, but for some reason as an album, it doesn’t excite me. That said, it is an iconic album in history, and it’s driven by Eric Clapton’s incredible guitar and vocals. And something else cool about the release is that it was officially released in both stereo and mono recordings for LP. I would love to get my hands on one of those LPS and give it a good listen. Classic rock was made with analog sound and personally, I think it would sound even better with the warm and depth of that mode of sound, as opposed to mp3 or CD.

Anyway, I’m happy to listen to Cream, and I really dig Clapton, but this album isn’t one of my favorites and I’m okay with that.

Track Listing (US Release)
Side One
1. I Feel Free
2. N.S.U.
3. Sleepy Time Time
4. Dreaming
5. Sweet Wine

Side Two
1. Cat’s Squirrel
2. Four Until Late
3. Rollin’ and Tumblin’
4. I’m So Glad
5. Toad

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