Saturday, July 24, 2010

8. Cat Stevens - Tea for the Tillerman

Counting down my favorite 25 albums of 1970:

Cat Stevens - Tea for the Tillerman

The exploration of spiritual topics wasn't uncommon or unpopular at the time this album was released, but I can't think of any other artist that made his personal spiritual journey so central to his artistic identity. His spirituality is not the primary appeal to me, but I do appreciate that his lyrics are intellectually inquisitive, and not pedantic or trite. If there's one song with a whiff of sanctimony, it's 'On The Road To Find Out', but the song is so rockin' that it's easy to overlook the preachiness. That's what really makes the album great; every song is catchy and interesting. Stevens never forgets that he's a pop star not a priest.

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