Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A Look at the Hollies

I seem to be getting more and more excited about the Hollies. Therefore I decided to watch a DVD called Look Through Any Window 1963–1975. I got this DVD years ago but noticed that I never actually watched it from beginning to end with all the interviews and stuff. This is part of the British Invasion series, although this one wasn't shown on TV at least in Finland.

The DVD is a nice cross-section of the Hollies style and TV live performances from the early days of channeling the Everly Brothers to their last major hits such as Long Cool Woman and The Air That I Breathe in the 70s. Some of the most interesting footage includes Clarke, Hicks and Nash doing three-part harmonies in the studio, apparently captured by George Martin's film crew.

Clarke, Hicks, Nash and Elliott give wonderful interviews in which they describe the joy, creativity and innovativeness of the Hollies, and how fantastic songs they wrote and realized in the studio and live. The self-praise is clearly justified. The Hollies wrote songs for instance about memorable events (Stop Stop Stop), women they adored (Carrie Anne), and sometimes beautiful words would just magically appear out of nowhere (Wings). In the arrangement section the Hollies were always trying to come up with something different, otherwise they would have gotten bored. The guys didn't even regard material such as King Midas in Reverse as “pop” which reflects the ambition of pushing the boundaries of their music.

The guys also give a rather positive impression on Nash's sad departure from the band in late 1968 and how the change after all turned out for the best for everybody. Nash found his place among Crosby, Stills & Nash and the Hollies continued their streak of hits (including no less than the overwhelming beauty of He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother, 1969) with Terry Sylvester replacing Nash.

All in all, a very nice DVD, even though many of the songs aren't actually played live. The guys do look like they are having fun (even though the following video is of more serious character).

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