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Fusion Critics' Poll 1972

Posted: Sat Mar 02, 2019 5:07 am
by Cold Butterfly
Fusion was an American music magazine that was based in Boston, Massachusetts and operated from 1967 to 1974. It formed out of the teen-oriented publication New England Teen Scene, and alongside Crawdaddy! and Rolling Stone, was one of the first US magazines to recognize and critique the increased sophistication of pop music from the mid 1960s onward.

On, i stumbled upon a year-end critics poll conducted by Fusion in 1972 to find the best albums and songs from that year. Looking over this list, i've been both fascinated and appalled. There's the blatant lack of diversity (black music and women were largely overlooked in this poll) which is not surprising considering that many rock critics in the early 1970s tended to overlook both of those groups which made music (Robert Christgau spoke of this in several pieces around this time) However, although artists such as Stevie Wonder, Curtis Mayfield, and Al Green released landmark albums in 1972, none of their music makes an appearance in the albums or the singles list. Both lists mostly feature a saturation of white-male rock, country, and folk. Many classic albums also are absent, as alongside the artists already mentioned, works such as "Harvest" "Transformer" and "#1 Record" aren't featured. That's a surprise, considering that Young, Reed, and Big Star were all critics' darlings in the early 70s. I will give it to them however, that the two most acclaimed albums of 1972 finish 1-2 in the albums poll. There's also a sizeable amount of reissues and compilations, which were also common in many year-end lists around this time. On the singles list, the only surprise for me was "Do Ya" topping it, ahead of rock standards such as "Layla" and "All The Young Dudes".

I will also admit that looking through the results this past week, it has turned me on to Spring's self-titled album and "I Sing The Body Electric". Those are definitely two hidden gems from that year.

Albums (there were a lot of ties on the albums list)
1. The Rolling Stones - Exile On Main St.
2. David Bowie - The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars
3. Blue Oyster Cult - Blue Oyster Cult
4. Mott The Hoople - All The Young Dudes
5. Various Artists - Nuggets: Original Artyfacts From The First Psychedelic Era, 1965-1968
6. Randy Newman - Sail Away
7. Little Feat - Sailin’ Shoes
8. David Bowie - Hunky Dory
9. Van Morrison - Saint Dominic’s Preview
10. Carla Bley & Paul Haines - Escalator Over The Hill
11. Rod Stewart - Never A Dull Moment
12. Raspberries - Fresh
13. Spring - Spring
14. Brinsley Schwarz - Nervous On The Road
15. The J. Geils Band - “Live” Full House
15. Slade - Slade Alive!
17. Sparks - Sparks
17. Electric Light Orchestra - No Answer
19. Peter Frampton - Wind Of Change
19. Dr. John - Dr. John’s Gumbo
19. Jackson Browne - Jackson Browne
22. Otis Redding - The Best Of Otis Redding
22. Todd Rundgren - Something/Anything?
22. Fleetwood Mac - Bare Trees
25. Dan Hicks & His Hot Licks - Striking It Rich
25. Joni Mitchell - For The Roses
25. The Kinks - The Kink Kronikles
28. Ann Peebles - Straight From The Heart
29. Stories - Stories
30. Jesse Winchester - 3rd Down, 110 To Go
30. Richard Thompson - Henry The Human Fly
32. Mahavishnu Orchestra - The Inner Mounting Flame
33. Johnny Nash - I Can See Clearly Now
33. Bobby Charles - Bobby Charles
33. Gary Glitter - Glitter
36. Ornette Coleman - Science Fiction
36. The Velvet Underground - Live At Max’s Kansas City
36. Weather Report - I Sing The Body Electric
36. Ry Cooder - Into The Purple Valley

1. The Move - Do Ya
2. Mott The Hoople - All The Young Dudes
3. Raspberries - Go All The Way
4. Raspberries - I Wanna Be With You
4. Derek And The Dominos - Layla
6. Michel Pagliaro - Some Sing, Some Dance

The albums and singles list: ... -19722.jpg
The individual lists: ... scan-2.jpg