Surprisingly radio-friendly vehicle for ex-Santana drummer Michael Shrieve

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Score 4


Automatic Man

Given this quartet’s formidable musical pedigree (including three ex-members of Stomu Yamashta’s Go) you’d be forgiven for expecting an onslaught of ferociously indulgent fusion. Not a bit of it. “One And One” and “Newspapers” are as desolately soulful as Station To Station-era Bowie, while “Coming Through” evokes a less clever-clever Steely Dan. Stand-out track “My Pearl” is just waiting for the right ’70s movie soundtrack to do what Paul Thomas Anderson’s Boogie Nights did for ELO. Guitarist Pat Thrall’s Hendrix tendencies are fully indulged on “There’s A Way” and the title track, but overall it’s only the frequent references to “Lay-dees” that anchor this album to 1976.