Coventry Jones is an unapologetic Hippie by the longhaired floppy hat picture of him on the cover, or by the American flag and peace sign artwork on the CD itself, the title should be a dead giveaway. Or is that Dead giveaway? a play on the Grateful Dead's original San Francisco stomping ground, the Haight Ashbury neighborhood, the title also reveals Jones's endlessly sunny, love not hate disposition. LOVE ASHBURY by COVENTRY is track sequenced by grouping songs together by the musicians that played on them, and this turns out to be a miscalculation. Tracks four through seven are by far the most rockin' of the group, but also feel the most forced as Jones reaches too far. "Cosmic Truths of Lenny Bruce" makes the mistake of choosing a subject Bob Dylan had already immortalized, and falling short. I was already weary of listening to songs about famous dead people before the first tacky lyric "I dreamed I woke up in Electric Ladyland" of the next track. "Planet Jimi (Jimi Hendrix Tribute)," with it's completely superfluous parenthetical title, allows electric guitarist Matt Amans to give himself over to the Hendrix riffs he tries to keep in check on the other tracks on which he plays. "Funky Cab Ride to Nowhere" is unfortunately exactly that, nearly three minutes of meandering electric guitar noodling. Only "Soul Must Rain" manages to distinguish itself as more than that.
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