UAS 6702 Last Exit
Produced by Jimmy Miller
Released on May 1969
US CHART POSITION #19
Find it at GEMM
UAS 6702 cover  

T he end of Traffic? So it seemed when Last Exit was released to honor the band’s contract, cobbling together some live performances with earlier tracks that hadn’t yet appeared on album. It’s about as satisfying as you’d expect, providing some small amount of pleasure for those who haven’t heard “Shanghai Noodle Factory” and “Medicated Goo.” Of course, those songs also appear on Best of Traffic, rendering Last Exit a turnoff for anyone but collectors. The live tracks recorded at the Fillmore West are of mostly historical interest, building up some intensity in what are otherwise humble surroundings. The remaining tracks are forgettable; “Withering Tree” is an old B side, “Just For You” a psychedelic curio from Dave Mason, while “Something’s Got A Hold of My Toe” is less than captivating. Because of the band’s on-again/off-again nature, Traffic’s catalog is riddled with holes like this. Welcome to the Canteen, On The Road, and When The Eagle Flies have all stalled the enthusiasm of fans. You may wish to venture down Last Exit eventually, but better to begin by rolling down the windows and listening to John Barleycorn, Low Spark or the band’s first two records. These will give you the fortitude you need to make it through a ten-minute version of “Feelin’ Good.” At the time of its release, Last Exit benefited from the band’s not-yet-waning popularity. Disappointment with this album is better reflected in the relatively poor charting of Best of Traffic months later. Though Traffic would be resurrected on John Barleycorn, Last Exit did mark the end of Traffic’s original phase, and its ugly little logo along with it. Some day I’ll have to put a list together of the all-time ugliest band logos, which would probably include Barclay James Harvest’s precious little butterfly and Patrick Moraz’ Story of I snowcone. (If you have any other suggestions for the list, let me know.)

UAS 6702 back cover
UAS 6702 back cover

TRACK LISTING

  1. JUST FOR YOU    (Dave Mason)    2:24
  2. SHANGHAI NOODLE FACTORY    (Steve Winwood/Jim Capaldi/Fallon/Jimmy Miller/Dave Mason)    5:04
  3. SOMETHING'S GOT A HOLD OF MY TOE    (Steve Winwood/Dave Mason/Jimmy Miller)    2:14
  4. WITHERING TREE    (Steve Winwood/Jim Capaldi)    3:10
  5. MEDICATED GOO    (Steve Winwood/Jimmy Miller)    3:36
  6. FEELIN' GOOD    (Bricusse/Newley)    10:50
  7. BLIND MAN    (Malone/Scott)    7:10

CREDITS

Mike Sida, Guy Stevens -- art direction
Ray Ross, Richard Polak, Francine Winham -- photography

return to TRAFFIC discography

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
UK May 1969 Island LP ILPS 9097 gatefold cover
US May 1969 United Artists LP UAS 6702  
AUS'L 1969 Festival LP SFL 933.362 gatefold cover
GER 1969 Island LP 203 474  
JPN 1969 Fontana LP FOX 7005  
GER 1970s Island LP 88 065ET  
US May 1988 Island LP/CD 90925  
WW   Island LP/CD/CS 842 787 digital remaster w. different cover
JPN 2000 Island CD UICY-9272 digitally remastered
US February 27, 2001 Polygram Int'l CD 548 540 digitally remastered

 

progrography

© 2003 Connolly & Company. All rights reserved.