Lesley Duncan’s debut album was a modestly engaging slice of early-’70s singer/songwriter rock, though not distinctive enough amidst a rapidly crowding field to command attention. Somewhat like Elton John, she blended parts of folk-rock, the emerging singer/songwriter movement, pop (though less pop than John), and bits of the Band’s gospel-rock flavor. Indeed, the record is best known for Duncan’s own version of her composition “Love Song,” covered by Elton John on Tumbleweed Connection (and way back in 1969 by a pre-“Space Oddity” David Bowie on a home demo that’s since been bootlegged).
Mahal's stint with Warner Bros. was not among his most artistically productive, documenting an era in which he become preoccupied with fusing his brand of blues with Caribbean rhythms and steel drums. This double-CD set contains the entirety of three 1976-1978 LPs for the label, in addition to some unreleased material. Those three LPs – 1976's Music Fuh Ya (Musica Para Tu), 1978's Evolution (The Most Recent), and the 1977 soundtrack to the little-known film Brothers – form most of what's on this compilation. There's a sameness to Mahal's easygoing blues-on-the-beach approach, and a sometimes irritating reliance on Caribbean steel drums for color, that wears down the listener's attention span in such a large dose.