Review of Dark
Chances are you ignore this record completely, browsing
through the racks. Somehow CBS always come up with the worst examples of cover art in the
history of thirty-three-and-a-thirds. (Remember "Very best of Poco",
"Dylan", the hideous re-issue of "Turn ! Turn ! Turn !" ?)
This album is sleeved by a poorly reproduced photo of Mr
Jans writing at his desk with candle and Tequila at the ready. A satanic face peeps
through the window, while a young boy cowers in the opposite corner clad only in his
Y-fronts, unconvinced that the crucifix on the wall is going to afford any protection. The
music inside is better reproduced: A kind a bluesy, laid-back funk, with Jans voice at
times bringing in mind Dylan, Browne and Dicky Betts. There's some expertly placed slide
guitar coming from Jerry Swallow and Bill Payne's synthesisers bless "Fineline".
Best tracks on the album must be the last two on the second side - "Back on my Feet
Again" and "Starlight".
Tom Jans has visited this country quite a few moons ago,
in a duo with Mimi Farina, sister of Joan Baez, and they supported her at The Rainbow.
Jans also has a couple of earlier albums on A&M, but I think this is the one to start
Tom Jans did not sing at The Rainbow with Joan Baez and Mimi Farina in 1971. He did appear
with Mimi Farina at the Cambridge Folk Festival - see Tom Jans In Concert