Year Of The Cat - Al Stewart (1976)
Al had released six previous albums before Year Of The Cat broke all over the world. It's easy to see why. It was the story songs of the seventies meeting head-on with the studio perfection of groups like Steely Dan and The Alan Parsons Project (Alan Parsons coincidentally produced the album!). Stewart had always had the songwriting goods, but with this and his previous album, he came into his own in the studio as well. He would continue this streak through to his next album, the minor classic Time Passages. Today, he's still at it hard, releasing two great albums in the last few years. Funny though, even those who don't continue to follow his career seem to always come back to this tale of love on tour. Maybe we all long for exotic holidays involving trysts with mystery lovers. Maybe we just know a quality song when we hear one.