Dark Horse

( 4 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Richard S. Ginell
With his first solo tour looming ahead in November and December of 1974, George Harrison felt impelled to rush out a new album, and even a steadily worsening case of laryngitis wouldn't stop him. Would that it did, for the appallingly weak state of his voice would torpedo this album and the tour, to his great embarrassment. "Hari's on Tour Express" -- with Tom Scott's L.A. Express churning out all-pro L.A.-studio jazz
ock -- gets the doomed project off to a spirited start, but it's an instrumental, and Harrison's vocal distress becomes obvious to all in the next track, "Simply Shady." Some of George's tunes -- particularly the title ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Richard S. Ginell
With his first solo tour looming ahead in November and December of 1974, George Harrison felt impelled to rush out a new album, and even a steadily worsening case of laryngitis wouldn't stop him. Would that it did, for the appallingly weak state of his voice would torpedo this album and the tour, to his great embarrassment. "Hari's on Tour Express" -- with Tom Scott's L.A. Express churning out all-pro L.A.-studio jazz
ock -- gets the doomed project off to a spirited start, but it's an instrumental, and Harrison's vocal distress becomes obvious to all in the next track, "Simply Shady." Some of George's tunes -- particularly the title track and the exquisite "Far East Man" -- might have benefited from waiting for a better time to record, while others probably could not have been saved. The recording quality, like the voice, has a raw, coarse-grained sound that belies the impeccable musicianship. Dark Horse is perhaps most notorious for Harrison's bitter, slipshod rewrite of the Everly Brothers' hit "Bye Bye Love" -- referring openly to George's wife Pattie running off with Eric Clapton and, for good measure, having both of them on the session! Dark Horse would also be the name of Harrison's soon-to-be-formed new label, as well as a metaphor for the underestimated Beatle who leaped artistically and commercially ahead of his three colleagues immediately after the Beatles' breakup. Unfortunately, this album -- despite its humorous Sgt. Pepper parody on the cover and outright plea to critics on the margins of the inside jacket to go easy on its contents -- would only undermine Harrison's hard-fought campaign for respect.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 1/28/1992
  • Label: Capitol
  • UPC: 077779807925
  • Catalog Number: 98079
  • Sales rank: 6,562

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Hari's on Tour (Express) (4:44)
  2. 2 Simply Shady (4:38)
  3. 3 So Sad (5:01)
  4. 4 Bye Bye Love (4:08)
  5. 5 Maya Love (4:24)
  6. 6 Ding Dong, Ding Dong (3:41)
  7. 7 Dark Horse (3:54)
  8. 8 Far East Man (5:52)
  9. 9 It Is "He" (Jai Sri Krishna) (4:51)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
George Harrison Primary Artist, Bass, Guitar, Vocals, Background Vocals
Mick Jones Guitar
Billy Preston Keyboards, Electric Piano
Ringo Starr Drums
Steve Winwood Synthesizer, Harmonium, Background Vocals
Ron Wood Guitar
Gary Wright Piano, Keyboards
Robben Ford Guitar
Roger Kellaway Piano
Tom Scott Flute, Horn, Saxophone
Nicky Hopkins Piano
Alvin Lee Guitar, Electric Guitar
Jim Keltner Drums
Max Bennett Bass
Eric Clapton Guitar
Ray Cooper Percussion
Chuck Findley Flute, Horn
John Guerin Drums
Patti Harrison Vocals
Jim Horn Flute
Neil Larsen Synthesizer, Keyboards
Andy Newmark Drums
Emil Richards Percussion, Marimbas
Derrek Van Eaton Vocals
Lon & Derrek Van Eaton Vocals
Klaus Voormann Bass
Willie Weeks Bass
Gayle Levant Harp
Dick Newman Strings, Horn
Technical Credits
George Harrison Producer
Felice Bryant Composer
Boudleaux Bryant Composer
Phil McDonald Engineer
Emil Richards Contributor
Kumar Shankar Engineer
Derrek Van Eaton Contributor
Lon Van Eaton Contributor
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 4 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(2)

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(1)

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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Overlook since its release

    This album was released in 1974 and it was the third solo album by George Harrison (excluding the ''Concert for Bangladesh'') after the Beatles' breakup. Although some critics have said that this was a very bad album and perhaps the worst solo album released by Harrison, I have a different opinion. I think this is indeed a very good album and it has been continuosly overlooked since its release. It is true that it did not reach the #1 in the US like his two previous albums (''All Thing Must Pass''; and ''Living in the Material World''), but it climbed as high as #4. The opening track is a very good instrumental song: ''Hari's on Tour'' (I am sure you will enjoy it). Other good songs of this album are ''Simply Shady''; '' So Sad''; ''Maya Love''; ''Ding Dong, Ding Dong'' and the exquisite ''Far East Man''. I am not including in this list the title track ''Dark Horse'' because George voice was terrible (due to a laryngitis). Another good thing of this album is the very high quality of the personnel: Ringo Starr, Eric Clapton, Ron Wood, Alvin Lee, and Billy Preston and others. In summary, I recommend this album.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    The lighter side of Dark Horse

    It was a different concept: Release an album to support a tour (usually artists hit the road to support an album). But with 'Dark Horse' (released in 1974), this is what George attempted to do. What came out of it was not exactly award-winning stuff, but it was interesting in a way. Unfortunately for George, critics hated the effort (George seemed to listen to critics even though he probably didn't admit to it). Everything about this album seemed hurried - the arrangements, the vocals, even the liner notes. And even though recording vocals with laryngitis may add a bit of vocal 'edge' for some artists, for George it sounded downright uncomfortable (check out the strained vocals in the tracks 'Simply Shady','Ding Dong, Ding Dong', and the title track). There are highlights however: 'Maya Love' is an incredibly infectious track - one of George's best. The guitar work on it and 'So Sad' is exceptional. (George always played a great guitar). And even though the title song has strained vocals, it is a well-crafted tune. George tried really hard this time around to show critics that he wasn't always so serious (his previous album 'Living in the Material' was blasted by critics for the 'holier-than-thou' attitude it was thought to possess). As a result, George sprinkles humor throughout - 'Bye Bye Love' was written for Eric Clapton and George's new 'ex'-Patti Boyd. 'Far East Man' is dedicated to Frank Sinatra with a little message in its intro for Frank not to 'get carried away' (Frank at that time called George's 'Something' the greatest song Lennon/McCartney ever wrote). The liner notes are filled with humorous references. And comic Peter Sellers appears within the album photos. Overall, not as bad as critics called it. On his next release in 1975, 'Extra Texture', George tries to take on the critics for their lambasting of his solo work. That album also has its faults. But if you took the best of 'Dark Horse' and 'Extra Texture', you've got music that rivals anything rock artists put out during that time.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A forgotten masterpiece

    Many people dismiss this album as being horrible.That was my first impression too.You must listen to this album until you begin to Appreciate each song.This album grows on you,give it some time and you will be happy you bought it.The real gem of this album is the title track.Buy it now!!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 8, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews