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Paul Simon

Paul Simon

1972

Buy At Rough Trade
Paul Simon
Album Summary

Paul Simon is the second solo studio album by American singer-songwriter Paul Simon. It was released in January 1972, nearly two years after he split up with longtime musical partner Art Garfunkel. His first solo album was recorded in England in 1965 but remained unreleased in the U.S. (except for a brief period in 1969) until 1981, when it appeared in the 5-LP Collected Works boxed set. Originally released on Columbia Records, Paul Simon was then issued under the Warner Bros. label and is now back with Columbia through Sony. The album topped the charts in the United Kingdom, Japan and Norway and reached No. 4 on the U.S. Billboard Pop Albums. In 1986 it was certified platinum.

Wikipedia

Rating

3.53

Votes

13711

Genres

  • Rock
  • Folk
  • Singer Songwriter

Reviews

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View Author
Fri Sep 02 2022
3

Like almost all of Paul Simon's work, this album swings back and forth between awkward self-deprecation and confident competence. It's as though Simon knows that he's a talented songwriter... but worries that maybe people will laugh at him if he tries anything too unusual. I find the resulting timidity off-putting and I can't help but wonder what he could do if he just leaned into his talent and went for it, full-throttle instead of playing it safe.

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Tue Mar 09 2021
5

A smorgasbord of different sounds. He was either that amazing of a musician or surrounded himself with amazing musicians, or both. Great stuff

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Tue Jan 19 2021
5

Great album. Never would have listened to Paul Simon without this site.

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Tue Jan 11 2022
4

This really does feel like a transitional album. Some of the wonderful folk stylings from Simon's work with Garfunkel but with some hints towards the more diverse output that he would explore further over a decade later on Graceland. It didn't quite reach the heights of that album, but there's some great stuff on here. Run That Body Down was a standout track to me

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Mon Dec 18 2023
2

This has nothing to do with anything, but why does Paul Simon look completely different in every single photo I've seen of the man. There's some forest demon fuckery going on here, and I don't like it. Oh yeah, we're talking about the music here. It's nothing special. I'm very indifferent to Simon & Garfunkel in general, and nothing by these chaps has particularly stuck in my head. Feeling a "meh, not for me" on this one.

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Fri Mar 05 2021
4

Interesting mix of material that is still very reminiscent of Simon & Garfunkel (like Duncan or Peace like a River) and that which is markedly different (like the opening track Mother and Child Reunion for example). Most of the rest of the tracks are arranged fairly simply but have a different feel than your average Simon and Garfunkel track; jazzier/more soulful & a little more laid back & personal/conversational.

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Tue Jul 06 2021
4

Paul Simon has got to be one of the greatest songwriters of all time. His melodies and tunes are so well-crafted, and his guitar playing is understated, but really effective. It's interesting to listen to his self-titled album here, because he hasn't quite reached the experimental highs of something like Graceland, but you can hear the ideas being formed and the seeds being planted. All in all a really solid album of great tunes, from a prolific artist.

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Tue Oct 05 2021
3

Paul Simon a une très belle voix, ça c'est indéniable. Seulement, dès la première piste du morceau, le bon Paulo commet un erreur qui lui coûtera très cher: l'utilisation du synté des îles. Mais laissez moi vous replonger dans le contexte. C'est en 1965 que l'éminent auteur allemand Chris Dusseldord mentionnera pour la première fois le concept de "Insel Synthetik" dans une publication qui fera l'effet d'une bombe dans l'industrie musicale. Ce synthétiseur, à la sonorité extrêmement désagréable, trouvera ensuite très rapidement refuge dans le reggae, qui usera et abusera du Insel Synthetik. On pensait donc le Insel Synthetik disparu, ou tout du moins tenu en vie dans l'intimité de quelques tribues reggae, mais c'est la que Paul Simon fait son apparition. On ne s'attend pas à retrouver ce son désagréable dans un album de folk. On se retrouve désemparé, dérangé, et on espère ne plus jamais revivre cette experience. Pour ce dur rappel, Paul Simon récolte la note de 3/5.

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Sat Jul 24 2021
5

Paul Simon's solo debut is a fantastic mix of styles and songs. We have reggae, folk, jazz, gypsy folk, blues, folk rock and latin to name a few of the styles here. The man is a genius. Best Tracks: Everything Put Together Falls Apart, Run That Body Down, Papa Hobo

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Mon Jan 10 2022
5

Slippery and lithe, every song is brought to life with twarps, boings, the sound of Simon scratching his beard. He starts with heartfelt coffin-side counsel and follows that with his best song ever, in which the sound of a couple fucking in the next room sets the narrator off on a reverie about losing his virginity that starts with his birth, takes in the major points of his life, and finishes by cheekily thanking the Lord for his fingers (yes, I'm reading this salaciously). The motel room he's staying in never features again, but we never leave it. Elsewhere, he finds the perfect balance of high- and lowbrow literary chops on songs about addiction, burnout, political deception, industrial collapse, marriage collapse, and a gloriously silly story about absolutely nothing--just a framework on which to hang witty rhymes and elasticated rhythms.

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Mon Feb 22 2021
4

What a fuckin folky bop my boi!!! Range of sounds and lyrics and all dat. Good stuff.

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Mon Dec 06 2021
4

I was surprised I didn't know any of these songs, but it was a very pleasant sounding, light-footed album. The album employs a variety of genres including folk rock and blues, and opening with an ska-inflected song that immediately puts you in the right mood.

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Thu Oct 14 2021
3

Is this really a white guy doing a Jamaican accent?

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Mon Aug 14 2023
3

Another nice, albeit inessential album. There are many interesting melodies and songs on this, and there are probably many people that love this album, as he's clearly a gifted songwriter. For me, it was a bit too corny and unfocused to hit properly, especially the end of the album which left me feeling quite underwhelmed. 2.5/5 Fav track: Duncan

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Fri Oct 13 2023
3

It was ok to listen to it. I was surprised by the reggae song who opens up the album but I liked some of the tracks

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Sat Oct 14 2023
3

Super solids starting tracks on sides 1 and 2. Everything else, eh alright. Kind of the classic tracklist for American records: put the hits at the beginning of side 1 and 2. Paul Simon's whole catalog is like this, some of the most timeless songs ever and then just some forgettable and not unpleasant stuff.

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Sat Mar 16 2024
3

Before listening: I like Simon and Garfunkel, just like millions of others and I get upset when people think Disturbed wrote Sound of Silence. I have, however, listened to Graceland and did not care for it. I don't know if this album is more folk because I can only assume this is his first solo record but what the hell do I know? After listening: My God this was bland. It wasn't bad, it was just ok. Barely any songs stood out to me and I'm pretty sure I won't remember any of them. I can't exactly give it 1 star (I reserve them for "new" Radiohead), but it's not even an enjoyable but flawed 3 star. So this gets my very first 2 star. Congrats Paul Simon!

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Thu Mar 21 2024
3

This is quite pleasant but outside of about 3 songs it's too timid for repeat listening. Grow a pair, dude, go "borrow" some indigenous tunes!

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Thu Mar 21 2024
3

Is this your album of the day? Yes. It’s alright. It’s boring. You have my permission to use that as your review. To my wife’s harsh verdict, I’d add that it’s beautifully crafted in places, with some clever flourishes. Over a period of my childhood, I have heard Me and Julio enough times to have assimilated it into my musical ID.

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Thu Aug 12 2021
2

I have no reason to doubt Paul Simon's genuine affection for roots music, gospel, reggae, Andean folk, African music, jazz, etc, but I can't shake the conviction that he's the worst type of opportunist and carpetbagger. It's not really fair of me. I feel like I should be impressed with his musical curiosity, and his dedication to craft. But it all feels like intellectual condescension to me. What would I have Paul Simon do different? I'm stumped. Would I have him stick to pop songcraft, folk, and rock n roll, as in his Simon & Garfunkel days? Why should I begrudge him trying to stretch? And yet I do. To me, when he shoehorns Andean instrumentation and themes into Duncan, it feels forced. When he tries out unconventional song forms, it feels like a purely intellectual exercise, rather than being organic. I can't point to specific crappy or tasteless arrangements, but the whole thing just seems joyless. Oddly, the only song that works for me is Me And Julio Down By The Schoolyard. I think it's the lack of pretension--even the Brazilian percussion (courtesy of Airto) works on this tune. Okay, how to rate? Paul Simon's craft is undeniable here, and the musicians he's picked to flesh out his compositions are terrific. But he overreaches constantly, blundering in his attempts to incorporate disparate styles and traditions into his music. His overt attempts at intellectualism don't help either. I can't help it. This music just rubs me the wrong way.

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Mon Apr 25 2022
2

Good to know that Simon was appropriating world music before Graceland.

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Thu Oct 27 2022
2

Yes, I know he's a great singer songwriter, but this album is way too bland for my taste.

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Mon May 08 2023
2

If this list was called 1001 of the most average albums you've ever heard in your life, I would have given it three stars. But it's not so I can't give this more than 2 stars. Absolutely nobody misses out on anything if they don't hear this album before they die. I don't know who makes these lists but they have an objectively bad taste. It reminds me of the Indians who out of national pride vote 10 out of 10 stars on every shitty Bollywood movie they can find on IMDB. Who wants to hear some guy blabber on about some basketball town? There's a million different albums I can think of which would actually be worth listening to before you die, which would never appear on a list like this. Loads of classical, current day jazz, yes even a lot of lesser known shoegaze albums are better than this crap. Go listen to some Saint-Saens violin concertos and avoid this album.

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Mon Oct 16 2023
2

Where is Garfunkel? I hateses hobbits

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Mon Oct 09 2023
1

No I don't hate Paul Simon for being a wife beater. I just hate this album. I found it boring, yet distracting Oh, and Paul's voice could benefit from not being so douchey.

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Wed May 29 2024
1

This fucking guy again. I wish there was an Art Garfunkel solo record on this list. I’d rate it 5 stars without hearing a note and would leave a review saying as much, for two reasons: 1.) I know it would drive Paul Simon nuts to see Art Garfunkel get any praise whatsoever. 2.) Art Garfunkel, as vanilla and boring as he is, is still not anywhere near as boring and vanilla as Paul Simon. He should’ve just called this record “Tapioca: The Album”.

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Thu Sep 17 2020
5

Key Songs: Mother and Child Reunion, Duncan, Run That Body Down, Me and Julio

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Wed Dec 02 2020
5

Best song: Duncan; 2nd best song: Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard Least fav song: Everything Put Together Falls Apart

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Thu Jan 14 2021
5

Some classics in there. Nice chilled vibes to all the songs

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Mon Jan 25 2021
5

This is one of my very favorite albums and it has one of my very favorite Paul Simon songs: Paranoid Blues.

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Mon Mar 01 2021
5

This is Simon's second solo album after breaking up with Garfunkel. The first song is surprisingly good reggae???, and Duncan is a really nice chill song with some world music influences. Overall its a really good album. Probably 4 stars, but close to a 5.

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Sun May 09 2021
5

Masterpiece. Slightly prefer Graceland. 10/10 1. Peace Like a River 2. Me and Julio Down By the Schoolyard 3. Mother and Child Reunion

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Fri Jan 15 2021
5

Exceptional album. Smooth but jaunty, sweet and sad.

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Sun Jan 31 2021
5

One of the most beautifully crafted Folk-Rock album.

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Wed Mar 17 2021
5

Very much enjoy some Paul Simon. Songs like Me and Julio down by the schoolyard is a classic. And a lot of these other songs were surprisingly nice.

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Fri Mar 26 2021
5

Everyone should listen to this

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Mon May 31 2021
5

This album was so good! The opener track was amazing and I know I'm definitely going to be listening to it a lot from now on. And as for the rest of the album, wow! Every single track was good but there were a few highlights for me as well as the opener track - Armistice Day, Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard, Peace Like a River and Paranoia Blues. This album is definitely one of the better albums I've heard so far. It makes me want to delve deeper into Paul Simon's discography, and more into the folk rock genre itself. 5/5 stars.

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Fri Aug 06 2021
5

Oh mon dieu, deux en deux jours 5/5. Le meilleur de paul simon solo avec graceland. Tellement unartiste exceptionnelle. Dan sla meme classe aue Dylan, mccartney,lennon, etc. 5/5

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Sat Aug 21 2021
5

Some fantastic PS songs, some less good but I love them anyway

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Sat Nov 27 2021
5

One of the best singer-songwriters ever.

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Tue Dec 14 2021
5

Melody driven. I’m surprised how much I enjoy his vocals. Hey Paul Simon. I see you

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Sat Jan 01 2022
5

A through and through high level album, similar storytelling like Neil Young or Bob Dylan, here with a fun-sounding world music twist

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Sat Jan 01 2022
5

Some of Paul’s best guitar work, melodies, vocal display, and songwriting that would follow him in 40 years of touring. While not the best album of his entire catalog, it is a great album and a great debut to establish his identity beyond Art.

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Wed Jan 05 2022
5

Great, chilled album from legendary 70’s singer/songwriter

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Mon Jan 10 2022
5

Paul Simon has been making music for 60 years. He hasn’t released a bad album and he’s released several masterpieces. This one just might be my favorite though. Just banger after banger.

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Sun Jan 16 2022
5

5.0 - Damn, this record destroys any ambivalence I had about Paul Simon. Yes, the way he parrots and reinterprets various folk genres into his music can come off as inauthentic cultural appropriation. But, as I’ve said about “Graceland”, this criticism is easily overlooked given the quality of the songs. He draws from deeply personal experiences within the backdrop of New York so they end up feeling genuine emotionally. Standout: “Paranoia Blues.”

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Sun Jan 16 2022
5

Listenable. Totally listenable. Even preferable to Graceland, which I could hear endlessly. The man can compose music & lyrics. Added.

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Tue Jan 18 2022
5

This one's going on regular rotation. Great lyrics, interesting explorations of different genres on each track. Was surprised to see Stephane Grappelli make an appearance.

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Tue Feb 01 2022
5

Här finns allt. Få artister kan blanda lekfullhet och melankoli som Paul Simon, något som blir tydligt från första tonen i Mother and Child Reunion. Vill du ha historieberättande fortsätter albumet med Duncan. Politisk kommentar, gå till Peace Like a River. Old school blues? Paranoid Blues. Alltid med extrem skicklighet och melodiös träffsäkerhet. Precis som Lincoln Duncan tackade Gud för sina fingrar kvällen efter han förlorat sin oskuld, tackar jag Gud för Paul Simons diton. Men mest för vad de gör med gitarren. En behållning med Paul Simons musik är alltid influenserna från andra delar av världen, samtidigt som han förvaltar ett amerikanskt folkarv. jamaicanska influenser i Mother and Child Reunion, sydamerikansk flöjt i Duncan, brasiliansk trumma i Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard. Bästa låt: Finns en handfull att välja mellan. Men Mother and Child Reunion gör ändå något speciellt med mig.

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Tue Feb 08 2022
5

Listened to this twice and thoroughly enjoyed it!

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Tue Feb 08 2022
5

It's hard to know what to say about this album because there is so much to say. Personally, it's one of my all time favorites. At least once a week, the line comes into my mind, "long after the midnight curfew, they sat starry-eyed" and it always makes life feel right again. Duncan was never my favorite song on the album, but this time it rose to the top, with its beautiful coming of age story. Sigh. I love Paul Simon.

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Thu Feb 17 2022
5

I am huge Paul Simon fan and this is his first great solo album.

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Fri Feb 18 2022
5

I enjoyed this more than the Simon and Garfunkel albums I've heard; more meaty diversity and texturally superior.

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Tue Mar 15 2022
5

This is a really solid album. Naturally everyone knows the Julio schoolyard but there are some other very good songs I hadn't heard before

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Wed Mar 16 2022
5

Хорошая музыка, успокаивающая

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Fri Apr 01 2022
5

Such a classic album. I'm glad I finally got to listen to every single track because I'm so in love with this sound.

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Tue Apr 05 2022
5

Paul Simon's self-titled album is a wonderful piece of multiple slices of Americana. The flavors of the blues, jazz, and soul-inspired work can be heard throughout musical history. Some of the guitar work is reminiscent of the later Ratatat (I swear I heard it), and the bass reminds one of the darker tones from Pink Floyd's *Dark Side of the Moon* (released one year *later*). While some concepts aren't as fleshed out as they are in later works like *Graceland*, the sheer honesty and raw nature of some of these tracks betray some of the true emotions of Paul.

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Wed Apr 13 2022
5

Paul Simon es un genio y puede hacer algo que suena como a Reggae, cosas folkosas, rockcito pop, blues, lo que sea y suena bien. De este disco en especial me gustó que no trae las que más se oyeron en Universal Stereo y me permitió explorar más de su música. Mi favorita, además de "Mother and Child Reunion" que es la obvia, es "Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard" rolones que le ganan la 5a estrella.

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Mon May 23 2022
5

C’est un cliché, mais quel artisan, je suis jaloux. Le jeu de guitare est particulièrement savoureux sur Peace Like A River.

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Wed May 25 2022
5

Best track: Mother and Child Reunion

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Fri May 27 2022
5

05/26/2022 The greatest. Truly special and unique in every way. An absolute all-timer.

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Sat Jun 18 2022
5

I'll be nice and give this 5 stars, well-written songs with no filler.

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Mon Jul 11 2022
5

Love Paul Simon. One of the great 20th century pop composers.

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Tue Jul 12 2022
5

Excelente álbum, first time listening to full Paul Simon album and wow. Song writing is awesome and the music is just so new yet so familiar. Will keep on the rotation

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Wed Jul 13 2022
5

pretty good fecken alblumm, feels christian. High Vibes High Spirits

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Wed Jul 27 2022
5

Fine songwriting, and great guitar work.

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Sat Aug 06 2022
5

Freedom from the constraints of a partnership shows here. As expected a collection of well crafted songs, bur suprising in the variety of influences demonstrated - from reggae through latin via folk and blues. One of the best singer/songwriters demonstrating what he can do, with strong hints of the things that were to come.

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Fri Aug 12 2022
5

HLs BESIDES ‘Mother & Child Reunion’ and ‘Me & Julio’: “Duncan”, “Peace Like a River” M&CR is probably one of my favourite songs, the rest holds up pretty well too.

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Mon Aug 22 2022
5

Very good album. Previously I knew only one song from that album. Very good relaxing. Thanks

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Tue Aug 23 2022
5

the style i like, great voices and lyrics, good stuff

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Thu Aug 25 2022
5

Solid album which showcases Paul Simons stand-alone genius. 5/5.

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Tue Aug 30 2022
5

研究活動が捗る音楽だった。気に入った。夏の終わり、どこか哀愁漂う空気が秋の訪れをまだ満面の笑みを添えては迎えられない、そんなことが想起される今の時期にぴったりの曲だと思った。

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Mon Sep 19 2022
5

Maudit que c'était bon! Je connaissais juste 1 toune, mais j'en ai ajouté plein à ma playlist. Je pense pas que j'avais déjà écouté un album solo de Simon, ça donne envie d'en écouter d'autres!

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Fri Sep 30 2022
5

Wrong link on Apple Music found but gas bonus songs. The original album is amazing. Love this!!

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Tue Oct 11 2022
5

How have I never listen to this album in full, or much of Paul Simon's solo work aside from Graceland. I always thought there would be something missing without Art Garfunkel, which truth be told it is, but musically its different compared to the duo's discography. Mother and Child Reunion and Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard I've heard before so I was expecting songs with a similar music feel, but was soon proven wrong. Aside from the aforementioned songs, I came away loving Duncan and Peace Like a River, along with liking most of the songs on here too. The blues songs towards the end fitted the album but I wouldn't listen to them individually unlike the rest. What I concluded from this is I really should listen to solo albums more, especially when it's the member who's the main songwriter.

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Fri Nov 11 2022
5

Listened Before? N Wow. I'm really sitting on the fence between 4 and 5 on this one. He nearly lost me with the first song.. but oh BOY did it come back strong. What a great artist and an amazing album. He was clearly talented because of his work with his partner Garfunkel before this, but this shows that he was the driving force behind a lot of their sound, along with adding his own diversity to the mix. A top tier record, I think I may even prefer it to his more polished later work. Added to Library? Y Songs added to playlist: Me and Julio

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Wed Nov 23 2022
5

Nothing but good listening here. Love Paul Simon

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Thu Dec 15 2022
5

Love it. Never heard some of the songs

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