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Manassas by Stephen Stills
Released: Jan 1972
Label: Rhino Atlantic
Stills' slide into mediocrity in the '70s was so unpleasant to witness it's easy to forget he created some killer rock in the decade's opening years. Manassas, a double LP, is the most ambitious thing he ever released. Surrounded by a cadre of California heads (Chris Hillman, Dallas Taylor and Joe Lala among them), Stills employs sweeping brushstrokes to paint a grand and epic statement. There's boogie jams ("Rock & Roll Crazies"), country-folk balladry ("Jesus Gave Love Away for Free"), stoner-grass ("Fallen Eagle"), Latin smoothness ("It Doesn't Matter") and even space pop ("Move Around").
Justin Farrar
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