There are plenty of straight pop songs like "Fallen Angel" and "Magic Man", which are well arranged and produced and show off the excellent musicianship of her band. In addition to her singing and writing the songs, Barbara also plays both acoustic and electric piano. An impressive performance.
'TIME OUT' - November 1978
The lady who entranced a Daily Telegraph critic in 'John, Paul, George, Ringo...and Bert' and who enthralled millions of Two Ronnies viewers will now rivet several record buyers to the girder of musical appreciation with a jolly collection of lovely songs and a winning way.
'MANANA MAGAZINE' - 1979
The "Sweet Oasis" album is highly recommended, being the LP that I always knew Barbara was capable of. It's her first for CBS and the label decided to issue the only non-original song on the album, Gerry Rafferty's "City To City", as her first single. Barbara does a good rock version of the song, which many of you will recognise as the title song from Rafferty's own recent highly successful LP.
The Rafferty song is by no means the strongest cut on the album and I feel that one of the nine original Dickson songs on the LP would have had more chance of providing the lady with a hit single. Divorcing the album from the question of'commercial success it is a beautifully performed and highly enjoyable offering and must rank as one of the best albums by a British female singer.
'YORK PRESS' - 2015
Considered as a classic Barbara Dickson album among her strong fan base, Sweet Oasis has strangely been out of print on CD for a long time. The mostly self-composed set added a manicured mid-Atlantic flavour to the roots folk style that has ultimately been the foundation of Miss Dickson’s formidable work. Much of this is thanks to veteran producer Bones Howe, who had previously worked with Elvis Presley and Jerry Lee Lewis, and a stellar studio band which included Ray Cooper, Ian Lynn, Tony Rivers and a certain Gerry Rafferty.
Barbara had contributed to Rafferty’s recent sublime album, and he returned the favour by contributing his title track song, City To City, to this set. This song was released as the lead single, but astonishingly missed out on being a hit. However, many will remember the follow-up single, Fallen Angel, with its irresistible chorus.
Although an accomplished artist in many spheres, at the time of Sweet Oasis’s release in 1978, while the nation was struck by Grease disco fever, Barbara Dickson was still probably best-known for her guest appearances on The Two Ronnies. Somehow Sweet Oasis fell off the radar. Therefore, this is a very welcome reissue.
SWEET OASIS (1978)
'DAILY MAIL' - 10th November 1978 (Review by Thomson Prentice)
Stunning new repertoire from the under-rated Scots girl with the crystal voice. Happy lyrics and arrangements dominate the album, but her range is demonstrated with 'Jesus Train', 'Second Sight', Gerry Rafferty's 'City To City' and her own ambitious 'Saint Joan'. It adds up to a smash hit.
'BEAT INSTRUMENTAL' - 1978 (Review by David Lawrenson)
It would be easy to dismiss Barbara Dickson as simply an MOR artist, but, "Sweet Oasis" deserves much more. She has an excellent voice, strong and powerful, yet capable of being pure and sweet as on the title track. She can also rock, as on her rousing version of Gerry Rafferty's "City To City".