Skip to content

Islands – The Band


1977, 6/10
Islands was The Band’s last studio album until 1993, and the last to feature guitarist Robbie Robertson or pianist Richard Manuel. In some ways it’s more like a collection of leftovers than a studio album – some of these songs date back to 1972, and include songs like the group’s cover of Ray Charles’ ‘Georgia on my Mind’, recorded to support Jimmy Carter’s presidential bid in 1976. It is similar to Northern Lights – Southern Cross – most of the songs share that album’s smooth, mid-1970s’ sound.

As you’d expect, most of Islands feels like second tier material from The Band. Along with Manuel’s emotive reading of ‘Georgia On My Mind’, the standout track is Robertson’s  seasonal ‘Christmas Must Be Tonight’, which is one of the best, most sincere Christmas songs in the pop music canon. There’s other enjoyable material like ‘The Saga Of Pepote Rouge’, another Robertson historical story, and the opening pair of ‘Right As Rain’ and ‘Street Walker’, but songs like the instrumental title track feel slight.

The Band reunited as a touring unit in the 1980s, and for three more studio albums in the 1990s, but without Robertson’s songwriting I have little interest in their later work. Islands is a competent, but unexciting, bookend to their initial lineup’s studio catalogue.

3 thoughts on “Islands – The Band Leave a comment

      • Yes I have. Definitely not the same but still lots of good music. Both Danko and Helm released some very good solo albums. I actually went to see them without RR. It really was to bad what happened with these guys. Opinions and rumors run wild. I choose to stay out of the BS. They made some of my favorite music together and individually. I still like what Robertson’s doing.

        Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Records, CDs and Music:

Living in the Physical World

Motion-picture Reviews

Reel and Rock

Exploring non-fiction film, rock music in movies and on record and related adventures on pop culture's time-and-place continuum

Legacy Records Southport

Only The Best In Vinyl

FanView: Music Blog

Enjoy reviews and interviews brought to you by fan love and inspiring artists.

Media Gordo

Words and Images...Stories and Designs

50th Music Anniversaries and Other Musings

Grab a Cold One and Let's Talk Tunes!


The World Revolves Around Mars

%d bloggers like this: