Early Morning Hours
Label: A&M Records
Shawn Phillips is like Dan Fogelberg, but with a chip on his shoulder. In the '70s both possessed soaring voices and interests in folk and classical music. But whereas Fogelberg went soft, Phillips released a string of records for AandM that took singer-songwriter fare into the avant garde. It's definitely beautiful music, but it ain't easy listening. That's for sure. "L Ballad," for example, is a seven-minute symphony, venturing from tender balladry to Wagnerian bombast. Take the challenge.