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Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Album Review: David Bowie - Let's Dance (1983)

Picked this album up for a mere six bucks today, and being a fan of David Bowie it felt almost obligatory to do so.  There's a few big name songs on this album - "Modern Love", "China Girl" "Let's Dance", albeit the original "long" versions.  I can understand why they appeared on both radio and the hits albums in shorter form - it's not because they were necessarily too long, but because the shorter versions were a far superior mix and thus sounded better from start to finish.  Thanks to my music hoarding proclivities, I am nonetheless pleased that they are here.  Of course, I'll mostly stick to The Singles Collection versions for my fix, with the originals getting a spin every now and then should I happen to be in the mood.  And the original, and frankly awful version of "Cat People" is here too - stick to the "new and improved" version if you can.  And I might just admit too that "Criminal World" and "Shake It" might just last a few listening sessions.  All up, not too bad an album I guess.  B

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Album Review: Billy Joel - An Innocent Man (1983)

I've loved some of  Billy Joel's music since the mid-late 1980s, when I was relatively wee.  I even saw him in the only concert I've ever been to (it's a long story) - his Face to Face tour of 1998, along with Elton John.  I loved it - I remembering thinking about how it sounded like a hard rock concert, both sound wise and in terms of the raw energy being put on display by Billy.  Of course, since then I've owned all three of his Greatest Hits albums.  But now I've branched out into his album catalog.  An Innocent Man in particular stands out as it contains my favorite Billy Joel songs - "Uptown Girl" and "The Longest Time."  They were the very first songs I had heard from him, and they are still among the first songs I usually play when I listen to his Greatest Hits I & II compilation.  It also features "An Innocent Man" and "Leave A Tender Moment Alone", but the track I've been doing my best to wear out is "Christie Lee."  A great song.  Otherwise, there's not too much here to float my boat.  Nonetheless, check it out anyway.  Not a bad album.  B+

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Album Review: Elton John - Goodbye Yellow Brick Road (1973)

Yet another album for which I had to listen to multiple times in order to appreciate it, Goodbye Yellow Brick Road from Elton John is one of the best-selling albums in the world for good reasons.  And whilst its growth on me isn't quite as pervasive as the likes of Roxy Music's Avalon, it nonetheless shows that it's more than the sum of its radio hits.  Yes, there's of course "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road", "Candle In The Wind", "Saturday Night's Alright For Fighting" and my personal all time favorite, "Bennie And The Jets", but any of his "best of" compilations will supply those if that's all you want to know about.  Frankly, I'm much more interested in the likes of "Funeral For A Friend/Love Lies Bleeding", "Your Sister Can't Twist (But She Can Rock & Roll)", "All The Girls Love Alice", and especially "The Ballad Of Danny Bailey (1909-34)" - it's the most Eltonesque ditty I've heard to date, and I can't stop playing it.  It's about time I reviewed this album, and I'm better for having listened to it in the first place.  A very good record indeed - 30 million plus album sales say it all really.  A-