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Stephen Stills – Manassas (1972)

April 13, 2019

[Album 640/1001]

Two key characteristics of a dynamite double album:

1. No listener feeling of ‘sameness’ 

Part of the charm of a double is the added room for diverse sounds.

Manassas is divided into four sides (The Raven/The Wilderness/Consider/Rock & Roll is Here to Stay). Although one could argue that the songs within a given side here aren’t all that dissimilar, no two sides feel the same.

Some of the Black Crowes-y tunes on The Raven bear little resemblance to country-esque ditties on The Wilderness.

Nor does the Dear Prudence-ish guitar on side three’s Johnny’s Garden sound at all like the extended electric outro in side four’s The Treasure (Take One).




2. No trace of diminishing returns

Some doubles are front-loaded, others…maybe should have been singles.

While there aren’t necessarily a lot of individual standouts in the running order, neither of those quality/quantity issues applies here.220px-Manassasss

I’m not sure which of the four Manassas sides here is my favourite – and that is a very encouraging sign.

It feels like my side preference could change on any given day, likely depending on mood.

And fortunately, I could see myself being in the mood for one or more of these sides on a fairly regular basis!


Verbalize the Positive

How great is this cassette’s seemingly indestructible case?!


From → 1970s

  1. I spent ages trying to find this back in my early twenties. It’s not quite a top tier classic double album for me but it’s close – I like ‘The Treasure’ a lot and the fourth side is my favourite,

    • And I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s where I end up too – it’s not the white album, but it’s not too shabby at all!
      I think on most days, I might lean toward 3 as my favourite

  2. This album is responsible for my return to vinyl as when I found it I could not give it to my son like the other albums I had found and bought my own turntable and that way lay madness.

  3. Cool that each side has it’s own working title. I assume you play cassettes in the Stephen household? Get those kids onboard Geoff!

  4. Love the ‘variety’ formats, Geoff. I really should spend more time with this, having a lovely original 2LP set. Maybe tomorrow…

  5. Y’know, I don’t think I’ve ever heard this!

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. 1972 | 1001albumsin10years

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