Have you ever realized that there are artists you like who nevertheless have a surefire type of song on every album that you will likely skip? The most obvious example of this may be Paul McCartney‘s patented “songs for me granny” on any Beatles album starting with Sgt Pepper’s. I’ve actually come to appreciate “Your Mother Should Know,” but I get it.
For me, the first surefire needle-lifter that comes to mind are the two long rock ballads on any Mott the Hoople album. Were they pioneers in rock balladry? I know they often aspired to the sort of rambling songs Dylan used to turn Blonde on Blonde into a double album. Sometimes the results were decent, such as on “At the Crossroads.”
Too often, however, these efforts resulted in the kind of ponderous rock balladry that original Mott guitarist Mick Ralphs and his new bandmates in Bad Company would specialize in. From there, it’s just a hop, skip, and a jump to Bon Jovi.
With the exception of Mott’s cover of “Your Own Backyard,” which does pick up steam, I’m skipping the Mott ballads.
How about you and the catalog of an artist you dig?