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Earth, Wind & Fire – All ‘n All

November 21, 1977 – Earth, Wind & Fire – All ‘n All is released.

All ‘N All is the 8th studio album by the American band Earth, Wind & Fire, released in 1977 on Columbia Records.
It is one of the group’s most well known albums and has been certified triple platinum in the United States.

The Guardian in its review of the album says that the “band can sound like one enormous kit, where every crash and beat has its funky place”, and adds that “the whole shebang is punctuated beautifully by Milton Nascimento’s Brazilian Rhyme”.
All ‘N All is described by Alex Henderson of Allmusic as a “diverse jewel” and he goes on to say that All ‘N All was “a highly rewarding addition to EWF’s catalog”.

Allmusic 4/5

The album won a Grammy for Best R&B Vocal Performance By A Duo, Group Or Chorus and “Runnin'” also won a Grammy Award for Best R&B Instrumental in 1978. All ‘N All also garnered an American Music Award nomination for Favorite Album- Soul/Rhythm & Blues.

All ‘N All reached number three on the Pop Album chart and stayed at number one on the Black Album chart for nine weeks. All ‘N All was also the bestselling R&B album of 1978.

ORIGINAL ROLLING STONE REVIEW

At their worst, Earth, Wind and Fire indulge in some of the most pretentious excesses in current black music. As on past Earth, Wind and Fire records, All 'n All is filled with leaded brotherhood platitudes, Star Trek sci-fi and stiffly poetic love songs. This sounds overwrought and depressing (and maybe it is). But there's a catch: I like the record, for like much current black music, All 'n All elicits a schizophrenic response. If the album represents some of the worst in black music, it also has more than its share of the best.

White's production virtues don't end there, though. The lyrics of "Fantasy" ("Come to see, victory, in the land called fantasy") may be hard to swallow, but the music is as close to elegance as any funk song has come. Voices and a light touch of strings suddenly appear over a choppy, propulsive track, swell and swoop, only to disappear at the snap of a finger and pop up moments later for an exciting, powerful finale. White also utilizes an odd instrumental mix that gives equal emphasis to percussion (except the bass drum, which is usually played down), bass, rhythm guitars and stabbing, staccato horn bursts. The result is light but substantial, and it's become a model for many other bands.

There's a strange contrast to be drawn between All 'n All and Sly Stone's There's a Riot Goin' On. Riot was druggy, down and honest. All 'n All is flashy, bright and fanciful. Sly saw what he didn't want to see. The Earth, Wind and Fire album is like looking at yourself in the mirror and finding that nothing is there. Maybe that's what makes All 'n All so compelling -- and scary.

– Joe McEwen, Rolling Stone, 1/26/78.

TRACKS

Side one

Serpentine Fire 3:51
Fantasy 4:38
In the Marketplace (Interlude) 0:43
Jupiter 3:55
Love’s Holiday 4:23
Brazilian Rhyme (Beijo) 1:20

Side two

I’ll Write a Song For You 5:23
Magic Mind 3:38
Runnin’ 5:50
Brazilian Rhyme (Ponta de Areia) 0:53
Be Ever Wonderful 5:08

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