Buffalo Springfield by Buffalo Springfield

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Buffalo Springfield by Buffalo Springfield
Buffalo Springfield by Buffalo Springfield

Album Released: 1966

Buffalo Springfield ::: Artwork

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1.Go And Say Goodbye2:20
2.Sit Down I Think I Love You2:32
4.Nowadays Clancy Can't Even Sing3:25
5.Hot Dusty Roads2:50
6.Everybody's Wrong2:23
7.Flying On The Ground Is Wrong2:40
9.Do I Have To Come Right Out And Say It3:01
10.Baby Don't Scold Me3:04
11.Out Of My Mind3:05
12.Pay The Price2:36


It's important to mention that my copy of this album is actually the 1967 reissue. Though Buffalo Springfield originally released it in 1966, they then had a hit called "For What It's Worth", and so the album was reissued in 1967 with that track included (see sleeve image), and a song called "Baby Don't Scold Me" was dropped.

Now I'm going to mention that I couldn't care less about this group. I like their music very much, but this stuff honestly doesn't move me. Fortunately, I don't believe you have to fan-worship an album in order to properly review it. So this isn't going to be a universally positive review.

In fact, unless the Wikipedia editors are lying, the band members themselves weren't unequivocally happy with this release. So I guess the inevitable Buffalo Springfield fan who writes me spirited flame letters disagree with their own heroes!

Whether or not it was on the original pressing, "For What It's Worth" is the best song on the album without competition. Stephen Stills might not have actually wrote it for Vietnam War protesters, but that's who ended up with it. Well, the track was aimed toward that crowd anyway, and they liked it enough to apply it to their 'great cause'. OK, there's the history lesson for you.

I'm going to anger a few people when I say that Stephen Stills was the stronger songwriter of this group at the time. Every one of these tracks were original compositions (possibly a bad idea, but full of merit), and Stills wrote most of them including "For What It's Worth", for what that's worth. And he also wrote the poppy and fun "Sit Down I Think I Love You".

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by Reviewer: Don Ignacio (blogging at Don Ignacio's Album Reviews)

It's sometimes claimed that Buffalo Springfield had more talent than The Byrds (yeah, right!) and even that they were an American Beatles (!!), but only two members had any real musical talent. They were Stephen Stills and Neil Young, who later formed Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, along with an egomaniac basehead and some innocous English chap (as for Buffalo Springfield's Richie Furay being a major talent. What, with Poco? Give me a break!!).

Buffalo Springfield were never particularly innovative or groundbreaking, merely a very good country-pop band that tried to rock out on occasion. This debut is their masterpiece, mainly because (a) they had the good taste and sense not to let Furay anywhere near the songwriting credits, and (b) they mainly stick to sugary somewhat smarmy pop jingles (Stills) and sad cowboy tunes (Young).

Because Young was unsure of himself as a singer, he handed over too many of the vocal parts to Furay's generic country croak. But Young penned the best songs - the wonderfully Brit-poppy "Burned", and the lyrically obscure but undeniably sad "Nowadays Clancy Can't Even Sing".

Stills' smarmy love songs like "Sit Down, I Think I Love You" (done a jillion times purtier by the Mojo Men around the same time), are mostly pleasant and melodic, and then there's his riot-on-Sunset-Strip classic "For What It's Worth", that replaced the slightly bluesy rocker "Baby Don't Scold Me" (after the former became a hit single).

The reissue contains the mono and stereo versions back-to-back (the mono sounds slightly better), thereby returning "Baby Don't Scold Me" back to its rightful place on the original release. After this album's release, these formerly innocent American/Canadian heartland kids became rich L.A. Rock stars, and started snorting cocaine and fraternising with hundreds of eager groupies.

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by Reviewer: Creative Noise (blogging at Creative Noise)

Buffalo Springfield began life as a bunch of folkies, most of whom hadn't a clue about Rock music. But as of 1966, Folk dudes dipping their feet into electric Rock wasn't a fresh idea - Dylan had written the script, The Byrds had already set the mold, and bunches of former coffee-shop clowns like Simon and Garfunkel were already bringing their genteel turtleneck music to AM radio.

So the time was ripe for more well-read longhairs to kick out the jams, and apparently the Springfield were among the best, at least live (not that I've ever been able to confirm that). Apparently it involved Stills and Young ripping their guts out onstage until Young would do his epileptic mashed-potato right into the Whiskey's orchestra pit. But you know, no evidence exists for that - all we have is studio albums like this one to document those wild and wookie early days.

Buffalo Springfield is quite a disappointing album. I was expecting something a lot closer to 1966 Byrds - you know, the nuevo-psychedelia, half dead-serious, half looney-tune, the taking of chances. Buffalo Springfield instead play it a lot safer than their Top 40 buddys though, and give us a record that contains by my count, two classics.

The first one is obviously "For What It's Worth" (the band's first single, a bonus track not included on the original album), still Stills' best song ever, written while tripping on acid and watching young freaks riot after a police crackdown. This tune drags us right back to the marchin' chargin' Sixties, it's a hot mofo down on Sunset Strip and there's gonna be some bleedin' tonight. Smell it. The paranoia... the sweat... the leather jackboots. But like in the best journalism, Stills keeps his distance from the action, physically and morally. Nobody's right, if everybody's wrong ... Neil Young provides the musical clincher with vibratoed harmonics like sunbeams glinting off the glitter in the pavement. Classic.

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by Reviewer: Capt Bonanza (blogging at Capn Marvel's Bonanza [Defunct])

For my money (and I paid almost full price for this), these guys are as good as their rose-colored reputation - there were few contemporary bands making music so assured and resonant, and Stephen Stills and Neil Young were already major talents.

Stills displays that through wizened guitar solos and fast-paced bluesy rockers, while Young is already crafting dreamy pop songs with off-kilter melodies. Stills wouldn't peak until the band's second album, but he contributes the catchy and insanely fast "Go and Say Goodbye" (along with the separately-issued single / EP "For What It's Worth").

Young blends his, Stills', and Richie Furay's voices into otherworldly harmonies on "Flying on the Ground is Wrong", "Do I Have To Come Right Out and Say It", and "Out of my Mind". And his "Nowadays Clancy Can't Even Sing" is a quirky waltz with a masterful Furay vocal, and he sings "Burned" himself with aching intensity.

Most importantly, Buffalo Springfield is colorful and fun. Having been weaned on Neil Young and CSN, hearing a youthful version of their sunny country/rock makes me indescribably happy.

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by Reviewer: Cosmic Ben

Buffalo Springfield's debut album marked the advent of political awareness and a more adventurous approach to American music-making, certainly when compared to the radio pop that had prevailed up to the time of the album's release.

The band's lone hit - Stills' "For What It's Worth" - is a strong transitional statement, one that deals with political events and paranoia, and seems to crop up on every documentary about the 1960's (it's the one that goes Stop ... hey, what's that sound? Everybody look what's going down).

After it had become a hit, that track was added to Buffalo Springfield in early 1967, but the rest of the material on the album is quite different. In its original form, Springfield's debut continued the shift towards melodic Beatles-influenced Americana, in contrast with the more frequently heard straight blues, R&B, and folk. So there's no 12-string guitar leads and fewer strummed folky tunes, instead there's more complicated songs with tight harmonies.

In a way, Buffalo Springfield is Rubber Soul marinated in Americana, resulting in country inklings such as "Hot Dusty Roads" and "Nowadays Clancy Can't Even Sing", more folky and bluesie, with songs long enough for a couple of minutes of good harmonies and intricate guitar leads.

But whilst The Beatles are a powerful influence on this album - most apparent on "Out of My Mind" and the fuzz on "Sit Down I Think I Love You" - both Stills' and Young's songs are more than mere knock-offs, thus setting the band apart from the dozens of others groping in The Beatles' wake.

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by Reviewer: Obscurity (blogging at Obscurity!)