Friday, July 27, 2007

Freeway - Riding High (1975)

Not much is known about Freeway, a short lived quintet who sprang from Melbourne, Australia in the early 70's. Freeway's creative force was legendary aussie guitarist Peter Laffy, who had also been a member of Fox, posted here earlier this week. Another noteworthy member was Criston Barker, formerly of Ash and Hollywood. Freeway's lifespan was rather short, but their sole release, "Riding High" is an impressive one.

Produced by Jim Keays, "Riding High" is a breezy and smooth affair with plenty of piano, organ and female backup vocals fleshing out the sound. The band sounds unusually American and the performances here are flawless. Crunchy in all the right places with plenty of Allman Brothers style twin leads, this sounds almost southern in places. In other places, the band explore high spirited R&B as well as hard rock. Surprisingly, this hodgepodge of styles is seamless and the overall vibe never deviates from one song to the next. Though its nothing revolutionary, the songs are well written and the production is crisp and clear.

Barker later joined Air Supply and Laffy became a well-known television and radio host in Australia, as well as staying active with his own blues act, King Bees. Check this out, you'll dig it!

3 comments:

Higginz said...

Yea!. Southern rock รก la Free, Bad Company and The Allman Bros with a pinch of Aerosmith in it. Way cool.
"Stone Me", "Sad Rock & Roll". "Rock Teaser", "Turn the Page" are only a few of the album highlights for me.
Thanks!.

Steve Welch said...

Hi guys, nice to see somebody finally appreciates that album after all this time, wonderful. Just some facts regarding Freeway and the album, relating to your page and the existing info.
Criston Barker, bass player and myself, Steve Welch, guitar, virtually wrote all of those songs bar one, Sad Rock & Roll which was written by Greg McCainish from Oz band Skyhooks. Peter Laffy had absolutely nothing to do with the album, Peter replaced me at a later date after I moved on, just wanted to set it straight.
Interesting bands that you compare it with, it's all good, just enjoy.
Cheers,Steve Welch.

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