Exposé Online banner

Dixie Dregs — Full Circle
(Capricorn Records 2-42021, 1994, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 1994-08-01

Full Circle Cover art

After a less-than-spectacular live release a few years back, the Dregs are back with an all new studio release, their first in well over ten years. So what's new with these well known purveyors of funky-jazz rock with an occasional dip into classical and country realms? Well, to start with, the lineup here is nearly the same as the more recent records, with the exception of Jerry Goodman, who fills in the violin spot vacated by Allen Sloan. Steve Morse is here on guitar, of course, and as usual wrote all the original material and produced; long-timer Rod Morgenstein plays drums, with T. Lavitz and Dave LaRue on keys and bass respectively. For anyone not familiar with these guys (could there be anyone who has never heard "Punk Sandwich" or "Country House Shuffle" from the old days?), their style combines the southern rock ethic with an instrumental attack closer to the likes of Kansas, for a sound that is truly American, both in spirit and emotion — a gutsy, instrumental rock stew topped off with some colorful cerebral elaborations. Morse's guitar plays into both ends of the mix, offering contradictions and a certain amount of incongruity. Add to that some adventurous sorties into country-styled guitar and semi-disciplined classical techniques, plus a measured amount of irreverence and anarchy. That review could apply to any of the Dixie Dregs' albums, though, and more than anything identifies the major weakness with Full Circle: the band simply isn't going anywhere new; this album, while not as flashy and brilliant as Freefall or What If (their second and third albums respectively), it's at least equal to anything they've done since, and contains no real surprises. Still, if you liked those albums and want to hear more of the same, then I'd recommend it highly; also for the newbie, it's probably as good a place as any to start.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 4, 1994 releases

Related artist(s): Dixie Dregs, Jerry Goodman, Steve Morse

Latest news

2017-11-16
Celebrate 10 Years of Fruits de Mer – As a special celebration for a decade of cool vinyl releases, our friends at Fruits de Mer records have prepared a limited edition reissue of an album by the first band ever to appear on the label: Schizo Fun Addict. The band is known for unusual release strag » Read more

2017-11-02
Mega Dodo Presents New Charity Album – Our friends at Mega Dodo have put together a lovely compilation of their artists performing new arrangements of nursery rhymes, and all the profits from sales of the album will benefit Save the Children. It features a number of artists we've covered. » Read more

2017-10-18
Phil Miller RIP – Sad word reaches us today of the passing of another of the great musicians of the Canterbury Scene — guitarist Phil Miller. His distinctive sound added greatly to Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North, and National Health, and he also contributed to albums by Caravan, Dave Stewart & Barbara Gaskin, and many others. He was 68. » Read more

2017-10-13
Moonjune to Distribute Tony Levin's Back Catalog – It has been announced that Moonjune will now handle distribution for Tony Levin's catalog of releases. These great albums will now be a bit easier to get hold of, so check out the site and see what you're missing. The veteran of King Crimson and Stick Men worked with a host of great players on these albums, and we've reviewed most of them over the course of the years. » Read more

2017-09-26
Bandcamp Shines Light on Niches We Like – Bandcamp has developed into one of the best places to discover new music, and even a lot of old music is showing up there. In addition, their staff has been producing periodic articles spotlighting some interesting stylistic areas. On 20 September, they published one called "The New Face of Prog Rock" which bears checking out. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Amon Düül II - Surrounded by the Bars – Actually, this is not a true reissue, in that these remixed versions of the band's better songs from their classic early seventies period have never appeared together on a compilation before....  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues