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Carly Simon - Boys In The Trees 1978 torrent
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Her career revitalized by the success of the Bond themesong "Nobody Does It Better," Carly Simon returned to record-making with this classy Arif Mardin-produced session, backed by New York's best studio players (Steve Gadd, Eric Gale, Will Lee, Richard Tee, David Sanborn, the Brecker Brothers, etc.). Simon reached the Top Ten with "You Belong to Me," a collaboration with Michael McDonald that showed both off at their best, and the album's other Top 40 single was another duet with husband James Taylor on the old Everly Brothers hit "Devoted to You." Taylor also turned up writing and singing elsewhere to good effect. But what really made the album a winner was that Simon had had a couple of years to write some strong songs in her unflinching, reflective style, and she continued to explore the loves and mores of her age and class movingly.
Boys in the Trees is Carly Simon's most serene accomplishment to date, but its moods vary dramatically enough to indicate that peace of mind comes at a high price. Under the influence of producer Richard Perry, Simon could come on like gang busters, often very successfully. But Arif Mardin, working here with Simon for the first time, takes a different tack altogether. His production is more custom-tailored than Perry's and has the effect of bringing the singer into sharp focus while making her sound subtler than before, of streamlining her music by toning down its preciousness and its red-hot-mama aspect. Mardin's efforts are every bit as unobtrusive as they are strenuous: he's like one of those makeup magicians who spends six hours making a model look as if she's just scrubbed her face with a washcloth.
The scrubbed-down Simon is a mightily seductive creature and also a somewhat mocking one, but for once these elements are firmly controlled. "You Belong to Me," cowritten by Michael McDonald of the Doobie Brothers, greets an apparently errant lover with a playful wink and with the warm understanding that a couple's fear of losing one another can be a nice way of keeping everyone on his or her toes. It's a number that could easily have been belted out or growled à la "You're So Vain," but this time Simon prefers to sound more like a cat who's been dining on canary. Somehow, she's a lot more compelling using a gently chiding tone than she is striking a come-hither-or-else pose.
Inevitably, since they address themselves to the same subjects so often, Carly Simon's and James Taylor's individual albums tend to amplify one another. Simon's title song here, a contemplative ballad about revisiting the house and attitudes of her adolescence, is delivered in the same quietly disheartened mood Taylor evoked in "Another Grey Morning."
The album's most artful juxtaposition also involves Taylor, since Simon sings a song of his, "One Man Woman," with a funny, confidential, lily-white soulfulness reminiscent of her husband's manner. The song is full of raunch and boastfulness about conjugal fidelity, but it's swiftly followed by a slow waltz (by Simon and Jacob Brackman) designed to seduce a former lover. The pairing of the two numbers is especially poignant in its suggestion that if even the most energetic, well-intentioned love affair turns sour, there's always a second chance. And the confidence and clarity of her delivery mesh beautifully with the mature intelligence that's at work in so much of this material.
Artist: Carly Simon
Album: Boys In The Trees
Date Of Release: 1978, CD issued in 1990
Genre: Adult Contemporary, Pop, Singer Songwriter
Bitrate: VBR --alt-preset extreme