How would you like to be the son of Woody Guthrie? But Arlo carved out a niche for himself with this, his debut album, which features that beloved 18-minute title cut and the lovely Chilling of the Evening .
While the title track may seem, by now, a rather obvious and nostalgic relic, we'd do well to remember that an entire post-baby boom generation has likely never heard it. At 18 minutes, the song remains one of the most hysterical things ever recorded, and many of its politcal barbs can still sting. But the record also contained two far more lyrical pieces: "Chillin' of the Evening" and the gorgeous, sweeping "Highway in the Wind." Some will turn to this countercultural classic for side one's epic, but it's the exceptional songs on side two that will offer finer rewards. --Roy Francis Kasten