Janis Joplin
I Got Dem Ol' Kozmic Blues Again Mama!


4.0
excellent

Review

by manosg USER (48 Reviews)
February 23rd, 2015 | 32 replies


Release Date: 1969 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Much more than a cheap thrill, I Got Dem Ol' Kozmic Blues Again Mama! is another jewel in Janis Joplin's illustrious yet short-lived career.

Blues Pills was one of the hottest bands of 2014 and a significant reason was of course the band’s charismatic vocalist. But one look at her persona and after listening to her stentorian voice, one can reach to a noteworthy conclusion; 45 years after her untimely death and Janis Joplin is still the prototype for any aspiring female rock vocalist. Chances are that during the next 45 years she will still remain up there as one of the most iconic female singers in the world of rock. Not only she paved the way for numerous women but she did it with style and an unprecedented bombast.

After recording two albums with the San Francisco based Big Brother and the Holding Company and making a name for herself, she decided to leave the band in order to pursue a slight change in her musical direction. The outcome of this decision was her 1969 debut solo LP with her backing band named the Kozmic Blues Band.

Released 13 months after the hard rocking, psychedelic Cheap Thrills, I Got Dem Ol' Kozmic Blues Again Mama! is a shift towards r&b and soul. While it consists mainly of cover versions of older songs, this “new” direction actually seems to fit Joplin’s voice like a glove as she delivers what is arguably the greatest vocal performance of her short-lived career. If you’re looking for vocal gymnasts you’ll probably be disappointed as the focus on this album is towards emotion and the blues Janis feels deep inside her soul. There are several highlights such as when she screams to the top of her lungs on the chorus of “Try”, her bluesy delivery on “One Good Man” and “To Love Somebody” and the soulful “Little Girl Blue”.

On the other hand, as weird as it may sound, I Got Dem Ol' Kozmic Blues Again Mama! is a somewhat acquired taste due to the difference in quality between the vocals and the instrumentation. Janis Joplin’s decision to use a brass section consisting of two saxophones and a trumpet seems correct but the actual performance is a bit subpar. Moreover, in the moments where Joplin doesn’t sing, the music sounds quite dated and tame which is very evident in the opening minutes of "As Good As You've Been to This World". Just listen how much the tracks picks up after Janis starts singing.

Overall, I Got Dem Ol' Kozmic Blues Again Mama! often tends to remain in the shadow of Pearl and Cheap Thrills even though it’s just as good or better than those albums due to Joplin's incredible vocal performance and the quality of the songs. The Kozmic Blues Band definitely leaves something to be desired but Janis more than makes up for it with a performance that cements her legendary status throughout the years.



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user ratings (58)
Chart.
4.2
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
manosg
February 23rd 2015


7279 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

When I saw the Scarlett Johansson news item, I knew I had to write this review.



Full album: https://play.spotify.com/album/5QhVE3aVTYsqGzBYkJUL6r



Your comments are welcome.

Digging: Misfits - Beware

Metalstyles
Staff Reviewer
February 23rd 2015


8438 Comments


Nice review, but I'd beef up the conclusion part a bit. Maybe add a few sentences more about Joplin, or reiterate why this album is just as good as Pearl.

manosg
February 23rd 2015


7279 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks for the feedback Magnus. I changed the two sentences a bit. I hope reads better now.

rockandmetaljunkie
February 23rd 2015


4354 Comments


another Scarlettaki fan Manos?

MrSirLordGentleman
February 23rd 2015


5237 Comments


Wow this didn't had a review?


Nice work manos!

manosg
February 23rd 2015


7279 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks MSLG!



I saw the number of comments on the Scarlett thread and I just wanted to conduct a social experiment or rather a sputnik experiment. The findings are not exactly encouraging...

rockandmetaljunkie
February 23rd 2015


4354 Comments


Well, that's because the subject isn't that interesting for most Sputnikers which is only unfortunate.

manosg
February 23rd 2015


7279 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Indeed.

laughingman22
February 23rd 2015


2035 Comments


Thank the god(s) for manosg, giving reviews to the most deserving yet forgotten albums

Digging: Crooked Sun - Sick Songs

cryptside
Contributing Reviewer
February 23rd 2015


2059 Comments


Very nice work here, pos'd. I need to check this.

Digging: The Amazing - Picture You

manosg
February 23rd 2015


7279 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I'm honored, laughingman.



Thanks crypt, hope you enjoy!

rockandmetaljunkie
February 23rd 2015


4354 Comments


Manosg the retro-reviewer !!

cvlts
February 23rd 2015


9030 Comments


man, how the hell did this not have a review?

anyways, had a small Joplin craze a few weeks ago and prefer her work with big brother and the holding company a bit more

rockandmetaljunkie
February 23rd 2015


4354 Comments


I prefer Joplin's solo albums because of their bluesier vibe. Big Brother & the Holding Co. are more psychedelic and hippy.

cvlts
February 23rd 2015


9030 Comments


her solo stuff just sounded a bit more "poppy" if that makes sense? this is definitely my favorite of her two solo albums tho

manosg
February 23rd 2015


7279 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

It certainly makes sense. She has all those soul and r&b influences that tend to make her solo stuff sound a bit more poppy. I also prefer her solo stuff a bit more though.



"Manosg the retro-reviewer !!"

I actually had a 200% increase in 2014 compared to 2013 regarding reviews for new releases hahaha!

MrSirLordGentleman
February 23rd 2015


5237 Comments


I'll say this millions of times if necessary:

47 reviews, 99% approval

Not a contrib yet cause old albums "don't matter"

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
February 23rd 2015


20261 Comments


review flows nicely manosg, pos. I hate to admit that I'm not all that familiar with janis joplin's stuff

Digging: Make Do and Mend - Don't Be Long

manosg
February 23rd 2015


7279 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks man, glad you enjoyed the review. Never too late to check Janis, when you're in the mood ;)

rockandmetaljunkie
February 23rd 2015


4354 Comments


"Not a contrib yet cause old albums "don't matter""

Being a contributor doesn't necessarily mean that you're a good writer, people need to realize that.



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