Walls And Bridges
1. Going Down On Love
– This song isn’t one of my favorites. Its kind of monotonous and boring. Song shifts a lot, but it doesn’t go anywhere. Like the percussion in the beginning while John sings along. The falsetto at the .14 mark isn’t favorable to my ears, but its John. Song has nice piano and horn playing and the production is better than anything we’ve gotten up to this point. Sorry, but this is a pass for me.
2. Whatever Gets You Thru The Night
– John’s only US #1 song and again, not one of my favorites. This song is hard for me to describe. Its too busy for my liking and nothing sets out. Just feels like a jumbled mess. Horn playing is great, Elton is a nice addition (voice wise more so than his playing), Keltner is in the background and even he sounds a little messy here. John’s voice is ok, but he doesn’t do anything to impress. It’s a good song, but I always find myself turning it when it comes on.
3. Old Dirt Road
– Love John’s voice on this song. Not much into that slide guitar though. Keltners drums sound good. The middle part is good with John preaching and the music marching behind him. Klaus sounds good too here, but it’s a simple song. Slower number, but I like it and I usually dismiss tunes like this. Who knows.
4. What You Got
- Love the groove with the drums, percussion, and bell or xylophone (not sure what it is). Everything sounding great, and then John starts singing. I hate his yelling voice here. What a turn off. It could have been so much more. This is an unfortunate song for me. I love the music itself, but the vocals kill it for me. Pass.
5. Bless You
– Another slower song, but it has a somewhat 70’s pop feel to it if anybody can make sense of that. Maybe it’s the organ that does it. Maybe I don’t know what the heck I’m talking about. Anyways, John’s vocals sound good. Music is tight and played well although the song plods along. Not much more to say except that I like this song too.
– Ah, the wolf howls. Every song having something to do with fright or nightmares start off with wolf howls it seems. Nice guitar playing, but that just reminded me that all of John’s songs sound the same to me. I think that’s why I have an issue with most of his solo stuff. Love the bass sound. Thumping. I always think John had too much brass and horns in his music, but I like them on this one. Its an ok song, but boring as hell.
7. #9 Dream
– Best song on the album. I always liked this one. I will say that John wrote and sang the song to fit the atmosphere of a wandering mind or dream like the title suggests. That’s a nice touch. If I had something to complain about, I guess it would be the whining guitar and muddy drum sound. Great song though. I don’t skip this one.
8. Surprise, Surprise (Sweet Bird of Paradox)
– Another one of my favorites from John. Love the guitar sound and his voice. Horns are good here too and make the song sound full. Great piano. The double tracked voice or background harmonies are way off at the 1:39 mark. Voices arent together. Keltners hi hat splashes are hypnotizing. Love it. Really like this song and always have.
9. Steel And Glass
– Really like John’s voice here (holds that note for a long time at the :38 mark). Guitar sounds nice. Like the organ and percussion coming in at the 1:18 mark. Is that the organ or strings? Organ sounding like strings? Anyhow, it’s a pretty good song with a haunting melody and I like it.
10. Beef Jerky
– The Magic Carpet Ride intro is cool. Nice beat with guitar and drums. Horns at the :50 mark. The middle really thumps with the horns and so forth. This is a good song. Infectious and makes me tap along.
11. Nobody Loves You (When Your Down And Out)
– John and his acoustic. Has somewhat of a Pink Floyd flavor going on. Of course the whole band comes in at the :40 mark, but it doesn’t add anything in my opinion. The song is a slow, depressing song that would have been better off with just John and his guitar. This one is just too low and slow for me.
12. Ya Ya
– John must have had some space to fill and came up with this little number in about 30 seconds. Nothing of importance or pleasurable here. Very short little blues number that I’ve forgotten about already.
This microscope was weird. I always held ‘Walls And Bridges’ at the top of my Lennon solo album list and now I’m wondering why. Admittedly, I haven’t given this an honest listen since I was probably in college, but I always remember liking it a whole lot more than I do today. The production blows anything John had put out before it, but the songs aren’t strong in my opinion. I like a few, but not many. Heck, I think I like ‘Mind Games’ more than this one now. Ask me in another 20 years and that will probably change too.