Yes agreed. As others have also said here, the bloom was off their rose, as it were (I'm not sure I'd use the word "anathema" *wink*), which is why - for me anyway - I figured they'd have to switch focus to have any chance of prolonging their already impressive career. I spoke previously about a disco-ish release but now agree with others who say that wouldn't have worked (assuming they would even have tried it, which is doubtful).And that, really, sums up where they stood by 1977 as far as radio and the record buying public were concerned. They'd become outdated, the record buying public had moved on to some degree and musical trends had overtaken them.
Richard has said he felt it was just a matter of time that they'd return with a smash hit single in later years. I totally disagree with that statement. [SNIP]
What about Country music? The Country audience seems a lot more "forgiving" and might have been open to some good quality country songs from the C's. Just a thought.