Little Feat’s Hoy-Hoy Rocks

Little Feat Albums with Hot Stampers

Little Feat Albums We’ve Reviewed

 

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Another in our series of Home Audio Exercises with advice on What to Listen For (WTLF) as you critically evaluate your copy of Hoy-Hoy.

The recording quality of many of these songs is OUT OF THIS WORLD, as good as any rock record I can think of. Although Waiting For Columbus is arguably the best sounding live rock ‘n roll album ever made, some of the tracks on this album are every bit as good or BETTER. (And the promo EP is practically in a league of its own for sound!)

Little Feat’s studio recordings rarely did justice to the band’s energy and drive. With so many live tracks, this is the album that really shows the band at their enthusiastic best. If I were going to choose one Little Feat album to own, it would be hard to argue with this one musically, and sonically the stuff here just can’t be beat — if you are lucky enough to own a copy with Hot Stampers for all four sides, no mean feat.

A Quick Overview

Side one has two amazing sounding live cuts, as good as it gets and that’s no lie.

Side two starts out with Lonesome Whistle, one of the five best songs this band ever committed to tape.

Highlights on side three include Framed and Gringo, both with superb sound.

Side four has a live version of the song Two Trains, another one of their best recordings, followed by China White, the story of Lowell’s feelings toward cocaine. Dead at 33, rock and roll lost a giant when drugs brought him low.


In-Depth Track Commentary

Side One

Rocket in My Pocket
Rock & Roll Doctor

This track has all of the best qualities of the MOFI Waiting for Columbus AND MORE! Since the MOFI is one of my all time favorites pressings, how, you ask, can this be better?

Better bass for one thing. No half-speed can have the punchy, note-like bass of our Hot Stampers — no way, no how. The MOFI has great bass for a MOFI, but when you hear it like this, it’s no contest. You don’t know what you’re missing until you hear it like this.

More dynamics and energy too. This is truly a Demo Disc track, with that live-in-your-livingroom rock and roll sound we love here at Better Records. Turn it up, the louder the better. The recording is so clean and the best pressings so free from distortion that you can go as loud as your system and your neighbors will let you.

Skin It Back

Ditto the above. Both these tracks are worth the price of the album and rank with the best work the band ever did.

Easy to Slip
Red Steamliner

Side Two

Lonesome Whistle

A MONSTER SIZED Demo Disc track; the sound is as BIG and BOLD as any rock song on the planet. This bad boy is easily one of the Top Five Feat songs ever recorded — and it would never have made it to any album if Lowell’s wife hadn’t found the tape in a bag in the back of the garage.

Hank Williams’ tale of a boy who broke his darlin’s heart and headed for a chain gang puts you in his shoes in a way that few songwriters can claim. And the production! The drums and bass are HUGE! How can this unknown, all-but-forgotten record sound this good, better than 99% of the stuff out there? What do these guys know that others don’t?

Front Page News
The Fan
Forty-Four Blues

Side Three

Teenage Nervous Breakdown
Teenage Nervous Breakdown [live]
Framed

A classic by Lieber and Stoller. One of the most fun tracks Little Feat ever recorded; ya gotta love this one.

Strawberry Flats
Gringo

With Massenburg at the helm, a man whose work tends to be somewhat on the hi-fi-ish side, I’m shocked at how good this track sounds. If it reminds you of Gaucho-era Steely Dan, complete with breathy female background vocals and a gorgeous sax solo, courtesy of David Sanborn, who plays on both albums (and sounds here a whole lot like Michael Brecker), don’t be surprised — it’s pretty obviously working from their model, and I’m tempted to say the student has become the master. This song is even bigger and bolder in most respects than the best Gauchos. For sophisticated pop production, this is As Good As It Gets. My hat’s off to George M. He knocked this one out of the park. (And it’s even better on the EP!)

Side Four

Over The Edge

Another MONSTER SIZED Demo Disc track; like Lonesome Whistle, the sound is as BIG and BOLD as any rock song on the planet.

Two Trains
China White

This one boast Demo Disc sound of a different style, with a huge group of backing singers behind Lowell, and everybody pulling out the stops, raising the roof as the old gospel phrase has it. Super sweet, wall to wall and practically zero distortion – -play me a CD that sounds like this track and I will eat it.

All That You Dream

Another favorite track, here covered by Linda Ronstadt. She rips it up pretty good; with the aid of some other females, she can let loose knowing that they’ve got her back.

Feats Don’t Fail Me Now


Further Reading

…along these lines can be found below.

This listing will show you How to Get the Most Out Of Your Records .

Here’s a link with advice for setting up your Table, Arm and Cartridge that can be found in a section containing Audio Advice of all kinds.

You may find our recommendations for Record Cleaning helpful as well.

You can find your very own Hot Stamper pressings by using the techniques we lay out in Hot Stamper Shootouts — The Four Pillars of Success.

Record shootouts are the fastest and easiest way to hone your listening skills, a subject we discuss often on the site and directly address in this commentary from way back in 2005.

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