Sunday, September 16, 2012

Roxy Music; final post from Roxy Music Week 2012: Country Life, "The Fourth Roxy Music Album"

Country Life is the fourth album by British rock band Roxy Music, released in 1974 and reaching #3 in the UK charts. It also made #37 in the United States, their first record to crack the Top 40 there. The album is considered by many critics to be among the band's most sophisticated and consistent. Band leader Bryan Ferry took the album's title from the British rural lifestyle magazine Country Life.  In 2003, the album was ranked number 387 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. It was one of four Roxy Music albums that made the list (For Your Pleasure, Siren and Avalon being the others).  Using Photoshop's photomerge - I blended the front and back covers.  Shot by Eric Boman, the album cover features two scantily-clad models, Constanze Karoli (reportedly either the sister or the female first cousin of Can's Michael Karoli) and Eveline Grunwald. Bryan Ferry met them in Portugal and persuaded them to do the photo shoot as well as to help him with the words to the song "Bitter-Sweet".  Although not credited for their photos they are credited on the lyric sheet for their German translation work.  The cover image was considered controversial in some countries such as the United States, Spain, and the Netherlands, where it was censored for release.  As a result, a later American LP release of Country Life (available during the years 1975-80) featured a different cover shot.  Instead of Karoli and Grunwald posed in front of some trees, the reissue used a photo from the album's back cover that featured only the trees.  Author Michael Ochs has described the result as the "most complete cover-up in rock history".

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