Consumer Guide Album
The Joy: The Joy [Fantasy, 1977]
Maybe freedom from preconceptions has enabled this group, which never achieved its proper impact to begin with, to make the best comeback LP in memory, but more likely it's the quality of the competition. Because basically this is just a good Joy of Cooking album. It probably helps that Terry Garthwaite and Toni Brown now work with black studio musicians--the white ones on Cross-Country did nothing for them, and neither did the hassle of maintaining a band. But this music is about sure-brained songs and an ever richer vocal interplay, just like always, and if Toni's "You Don't Owe Me Spring" reminds me never to forget her penchant for limpid soppiness, everything else makes clear that once a rock band defines itself as adult it need never grow old.