This third CATS album is wholly in keeping with the growing confidence of the band (in contrast to the somewhat laissez-faire sophomore outing, appropriately titled Let It Wander) as well as the creative progression of its forebears. In 1978, music lovers in general and Grateful Dead-heads, in particular, were more than a little flummoxed by the disco-overtones of the title track on the Shakedown Street. But that inclusion made no less sense during that period than the expansion of style for Circles Around The Sun in this era of groove-oriented synth-pop and its many derivatives.
Founder and titular leader Neal Casal is prominent in the eye-opening layout of the poster enclosed with this LP and, notwithstanding how ego-less and deferential he plays on something like “Leaving (Rogue Lemon), that’s as it should be. His wish for the surviving band members to carry on in the wake of his passing is a righteous one, all the more so as, prior to that tragedy and including this endeavor, Circles Around The Sun had established a foundation for itself too firm to leave behind. As suggested by this very record—and the group’s recent tour—the stability of that ground-work also left room for exploration that, in the long run, should continually maintain the novelty of its studio endeavors while rendering the group’s live shows comparably fresh.
Read the full review at Glide Magazine