Late 70’s soft rock never sounded so good with these guys, Couchois (pronunced Ku-Shwa) were an Alabama based band blessed with excellent multi-part harmonies.
Written by: gdmonline
LABEL: Warner Bros
SERIAL: BSK 3289
CD REISSUE: Discogs Reissue List
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: USA
LINEUP: Chris Couchois – vocals, guitars, drums * Pat Couchois – guitars, vocals * Chas Carlson – keyboards, vocals * Howard Messer – bass, vocals * Mike Couchois – drums, vocals
TRACK LISTING: 01 Do It In Darkness * 02 The Colonel * 03 Walkin’ The Fence * 04 Cripple * 05 Going To The Races * 06 Devils Triangle * 07 I Could Never Take Her Away From You * 08 No Longer Needed * 09 Kalahari Cattle Drive
Late 70’s soft rock never sounded so good with these guys. Couchois (pronunced Ku-Shwa) were an Alabama based band blessed with excellent multi-part harmonies. They played a style that sees them cross swords with Pablo Cruise, Ambrosia and Firefall on their quieter moments, and perhaps Santana (circa their AOR days ‘Inner Secrets’, ‘Shango’ etc) on their rockier parts.
For period AOR this one is gonna get the head scratching, as not many people know about these guys, nor their earlier incarnation in the early 70’s pop band Ratchell. They’ve used the production talent of Steve Barri, Eddie Lambert and Roger Nichols to twiddle the dials. Those three have been around for years, so the Couchois brothers plus hangers on are in very good company. The choruses are something to behold, rich, full and swimming in melody. Very easy to hum along with these that’s for sure.
Kicking off with ‘Do It In Darkness’ (yes the lyrics are that suggestive), they move in a direction knocking at the door of AOR demi-god Russ Ballard, especially comparable to those fantastic 80’s efforts of his.
The vocal harmonies are awash on ‘The Colonel’ while third track in ‘Walkin’ The Fence’ is a bonafide period AOR classic. Bouncy, bright and a killer chorus. Not far behind is ‘Cripple’, another breezy piece with loads of acoustic guitar and another chorus from heaven, despite the less than convincing title.
They veer into pomp by accident it would seem, on the fantastic ‘Devils Triangle’. The keyboards and acoustic guitar mix would have fans of Prophet‘s debut album enviously thinking hard, could it be ‘Slow Down’ Part II?
The track ‘Kalahari Cattle Drive’ (?) mixes mostly rhythmic pieces in a jazzy, fusion oriented fashion, not unlike the aforementioned Santana. Not sure how they integrate ‘jungles, cattle, deserts, kiwifruit and whiskey’ in the lyrics of the chorus, go figure.
Now that I’ve tracked this baby down, I’m on an all-out hunt for their second album ‘Nasty Hardware’, which by all accounts is more radio-rock oriented than this one. Wow, gotta have it! In the meantime, go find this at some online second hand vinyl store. You won’t regret it. For $1.95 I didn’t!
Walkin’ The Fence
Going To The Races