Artist: A Taste Of Honey
Title: Twice As Sweet
Genre: Soul, Funk
Label: Capitol Records
Catalog# 1A 062-86198
A Taste of Honey was the name of an American recording act, formed in 1971 by associates Perry Kibble and Donald Ray Johnson. The members of the band consisted of Janice Marie Johnson (vocals, co-writer, bass), Carlita Dorhan (vocals, guitar), Perry Kibble (keyboards, co-producer, co-writer) and Donald Ray Johnson (drums). Long time friends, Kibble and Janice-Marie Johnson (no relation to Donald) were the original members of the band. Each had left a band to join forces and, after going through several drummers, they settled on Johnson, as well as replacing lead singer with Gregory Walker, who left the band just prior to the successful release of “Boogie Oogie Oogie”. Carlita Dorhan left the group in early 1976, and Hazel Payne was added.
“Twice As Sweet” was their third album overall and was produced by Jazz legend George Duke. A Taste Of Honey were as well known for their hit “Sukiyaki”, which is on this record, as they were for being female musicians, playing guitar, bass and singing. At the heart of the group were Janice Marie Johnson and Hazel Payne. They were produced by George Duke and have that slick Modern Soul sound that Duke was playing at the same time. One of the favorite song is “Rescue Me” with its guitar line and sharp horn stabs before mellowing out during the singing.
1. Ain’t Nothin’ But A Party (4:54)
2. Rescue Me (3:50)
3. Superstar Superman (3:03)
4. I’m Talkin’ ‘Bout You (5:15)
1. She’s A Dancer (3:07)
2. Don’t You Lead Me On (3:19)
3. Good-Bye Baby (4:01)
4. Say That You’ll Stay (4:25)
5. Sukiyaki (3:19)
Janice Marie Johnson – Bass, Vocals
Hazel P. Payne – Guitar, Vocals
Horn Arrangements – George Duke
Producer – George Duke
Executive-Producer – Dr. Cecil Hale
Recorded & Mixed – Tommy Vicari
Recorded & Mixed at – Westlake Audio
Artist: George Duke
Title: Dream On
Genre: Soul, Electronic
Label: Epic Records
Produced, Arranged, Conducted by: George Duke
On his R&B-oriented records of the late ’70s, George Duke often shared the lead vocals with such band members as Lynn Davis, Josie James, and Napoleon Brock, but none of them are employed on 1982′s “Dream On”, which finds him handling most of the lead vocals himself. And that isn’t a bad thing, because Duke is a soulful and charismatic singer there is no reason why he shouldn’t hog the microphone on his own albums. Unfortunately, he doesn’t have a lot of first-rate material to work with on this competent, if uneven and unfocused, LP. “Dream On” isn’t a bad album; sleek R&B ballads like “I Will Always Be Your Friend,” “Let Your Love Shine,” and “You” are pleasant, but they aren’t remarkable, and while Dream On simmers, it never burns and never explodes. Even “Son of Reach for It (The Funky Dream)” a sequel to Duke’s 1977 smash “Reach for It” isn’t all that exciting. The best thing on the record is a remake of the mellow soul ballad “Someday,” which he had previously recorded for 1975′s I Love the Blues, She Heard My Cry.
1. Shine On (5:12)
2. You (4:37)
3. Dream On (4:01)
4. I Will Always Be Your Friend (3:27)
5. Framed (3:18)
1. Ride on Love (5:25)
2. Son of Reach for It (The Funky Dream (4:25)
3. Someday (3:51)
4. Positive Energy (3:33)
5. Let Your Love Shine (4:27)
George Duke – Synthesizer, Bass, Piano, Keyboards, Vocals, Vocals (Background), Clavinet, Melodion, ?, Arp, Fender Rhodes, Finger Snaps, Oberheim, Electronic Drums, Mini Moog, Prophet 5
Deborah Thomas – Vocals
Sybil Thomas – Vocals
Flora Purim – Vocals
Jean Carn – Vocals
Leon “Ndugu” Chancler – Drums, Vocals
Carl Carlwell – Vocals (Background)
Bill Reichenbach Jr. – Trombone
Byron Miller – Bass
Icarus Johnson – Guitar
Charles “Icarus” Johnson – Guitar
Michael Sembello – Guitar
Larry Williams – Saxophone, Sax (Tenor)
Gary Herbig – Saxophone
Paulinho Da Costa – Percussion
Virginia Majewski, Barbara Thomason, Denyse Buffum, Rollice Dale – Viola
Nils Oliver, Daniel Rothmuller, Julianna Buffum, Paula Hochhalter, Dennis Karmazyn – Cello
Bob Sanov, Sheldon Sanov, Carol Shive, Paul Shure, Marcia Van Dyke, Dorothy Wade, Ken Yerke, Mari Tsumura-Botnick, Arnold Belnick, Bonnie Douglas , Henry Ferber, Ronald Folsom, Frank Foster, Endre Granat – Violin
Gary Grant – Trumpet, Flugelhorn
Jerry Hey – Trumpet, Flugelhorn
Engineers - Kerry McNabb, Tommy Vicari, Erik Zobler
Assistant Engineer - Stewart Whitmore, Nick Spigel, James “Chip” Orlando, Jim Cassell
Brian Gardner - Mastering
Artist: The Buggles
Title: Adventures In Modern Recording
Released: November 11, 1981
Genre: Synthpop, New Wave
Label: Carrere Records
Producer: Trevor Horn, John Sinclair, Geoff Downes
Engineers: Stuart Bruce (also assistant engineer), Gary Langan, Julian Mendelsohn
“Adventures in Modern Recording” is the second and last studio album by the British synthpop duo The Buggles released in 1981 on Carrere Records. Made one year after their stint as members of Yes.
Both Horn and Downes had been working on several outside projects, including Yes’ 1980 release “Drama”, which severely limited their time, and for the most part, Adventures was a Trevor Horn solo project; Geoff Downes only appears on three tracks. However, many of the criticisms leveled against this outing were unfounded and there is still much to like; several songs, such as the infectious title track, equal The Age of Plastic. Both “Adventures in Modern Recording” and “Inner City,” with its lush arrangement and engrossing melody, show off Horn’s remarkable production savvy. Horn and Downes collaborations like the sultry “Vermillion Sands” and “I Am a Camera” a melancholy, stripped-down version of “Into the Lens,” which appeared on Drama are top-notch. Meanwhile, “Lenny” is a shot of adrenaline that could have fit nicely on “Drama” as well; actually, a good portion of that album is as much a Buggles recording as anything you’ll find here, so to consider Adventures the second Buggles release would be unfair. Instead, Adventures and Drama should be seen as a collective statement.
The album contained no hits, and The Buggles broke up during recording, with Geoffrey Downes joining Asia and Trevor Horn becoming a producer.
1. Adventures in Modern Recording (3:46)
2. Beatnik (3:38)
3. Vermillion Sands (6:48)
4. I Am a Camera (4:56)
1. On TV (2:48)
2. Inner City (3:22)
3. Lenny (3:12)
4. Rainbow Warrior (5:22)
5. Adventures in Modern Recording (reprise) (0:51)
Trevor Horn – vocals, Bass
Geoff Downes – keyboards, drum programming
Simon Darlow – keyboards
Bruce Woolley – vocals
John Sinclair – drum programming
Chris Squire – sound effects
Anne Dudley – keyboards
Luis Jardim – percussion
Danny Schogger – keyboards
Rod Thompson – keyboards on
Artist: Pink Floyd
Title: A Collection Of Great Dance Songs
Released: 23 november, 1981
Label: Harvest/EMI Records
Genre: Progressive Rock
Producer: Pink Floyd, Roger Waters, David Gilmour, James Guthrie and Bob Ezrin
Catalog# 1C 064-07575
“A Collection of Great Dance Songs” is a compilation album by Pink Floyd released on 23 November 1981. The title is facetious, given that Pink Floyd are not known for making particularly danceable music. This is perhaps evidenced by the album art, which featured a photograph of ballroom dancers guyed to the ground so they cannot move.
The album contains alternate mixes of “Shine On You Crazy Diamond” (which comprises parts 1, 2, 4 and 7) edited down for time reasons, and “Another Brick in the Wall (Part 2)” (which combines the intro from the single mix with the album version which fades out during the “if you don’t eat your meat” ending). Also, the track “Money” was re-recorded. David Gilmour re-recorded the track himself playing all of the drums, guitars, keyboards, bass guitar and vocals and co-producing the song with James Guthrie. Dick Parry reprised his saxophone role on the track. There are some differences between the re-recorded version and the original; mainly in the saxophone and guitar solos and the overall use of reverb and Gilmour repeating “away” at the end instead of the high pitch scat singing on the original. The drumming is noticeably different from Nick Mason’s, especially during the guitar solo, with very little of the tom-tom fills heard on the original.
1. One of These Days (5:49)
2. Money (Re-recorded in 1981) (6:45)
3. Sheep (10:25)
1. Shine On You Crazy Diamond (10:41)
2. Wish You Were Here (5:25)
3. Another Brick in the Wall (Part II) (3:52)
Roger Waters – bass, lead vocals, backing vocals, rhythm guitar
Richard Wright – keyboards and synthesizers, backing vocals
David Gilmour – lead and rhythm guitars, lead vocals, bass on, backing vocals, drums and keyboard
Nick Mason – drums, vocal
James Guthrie – remastering production
The Islington Green School – vocals on “Another Brick in the Wall, Part II”
Dick Parry – saxophone on “Money”
Doug Sax – mastering and remastering
TCP (pseudonym for Hipgnosis) – sleeve design and photos (Storm Thorgerson, Peter Christopherson, and Aubrey “Po” Powell)
Artist: Iggy Pop
Title: Lust For Life
Genre: Punk, Rock
“Lust For Life” is a 1977 album by Iggy Pop, his second solo release and his second collaboration with David Bowie, following “The Idiot” earlier in the year.
On “The Idiot”, Iggy Pop looked deep inside himself, trying to figure out how his life and his art had gone wrong in the past. But on “Lust for Life”, released less than a year later, Iggy decided it was time to kick up his heels, as he traded in the mid-tempo introspection of his first album and began rocking hard again. Musically, “Lust for Life” is a more aggressive set than “The Idiot”, largely thanks to drummer Hunt Sales and his bassist brother Tony Sales. The Sales’ proved they were a world class rhythm section, laying out power and spirit on the rollicking title cut, the tough groove of “Tonight,” and the lean neo-punk assault of “Neighborhood Threat,” and with guitarists Ricky Gardner and Carlos Alomar at their side, they made for a tough, wiry rock & roll band a far cry from the primal stomp of the Stooges, but capable of kicking Iggy back into high gear. As a lyricist and vocalist, Iggy Pop rose to the challenge of the material; if he was still obsessed with drugs (“Tonight”), decadence (“The Passenger”), and bad decisions (“Some Weird Sin”), the title cut suggested he could avoid a few of the temptations that crossed his path, and songs like “Success” displayed a cocky joy that confirmed Iggy was back at full strength.
1. Lust for Life (5:13)
2. Sixteen (2:26)
3. Some Weird Sin (3:42)
4. The Passenger (4:44)
5. Tonight (3:39)
1. Success (4:25)
2. Turn Blue (6:56)
3. Neighborhood Threat (3:25)
4. Fall in Love with Me (6:30)
Artist: Donald Fagen
Title: The Nightfly
Label: Warner Bros.
Genre: Jazz Rock, Fusion
“The Nightfly” is the first solo album by Steely Dan co-founder Donald Fagen, released in 1982. It was one of the first fully digital recordings of popular music. Although “The Nightfly” includes a number of production staff and musicians who had played on Steely Dan records, it is notably Fagen’s first release without longtime collaborator Walter Becker.
Unlike the majority of Fagen’s work before this point, “The Nightfly” is almost blatantly autobiographical. Many of the songs relate to the cautiously optimistic mood of his suburban childhood in the late 1950s and early 1960s, and include such lyrical topics as late night jazz deejays, bomb shelters, and tropical vacations.
“The Nightfly” produced two popular hits with “I.G.Y. (What a Beautiful World)” and “New Frontier”.
1. I.G.Y. (6:03)
2. Green Flower Street (3:42)
3. Ruby Baby (5:39)
4. Maxine (3:49)
1. New Frontier (6:21)
2. The Nightfly (5:47)
3. The Goodbye Look (4:50)
4. Walk Between Raindrops (2:38)
Artists: Stray Cats
Title: Gonna Ball
“Gonna Ball” is the second album from the rockabilly band Stray Cats. It was released only in England in 1981 and was not as successful as “Stray Cats”. Five of the songs from it, including “Baby Blue Eyes” and “Little Miss Prissy,” were issued on the band’s first American album “Built for Speed”.
“Gonna Ball” seems like a minor masterpiece, capturing the group going deep into early rock & roll and even pre-rock & roll roots music and far beyond the boundaries of rockabilly, supported by various players, including Rolling Stones alumnus Ian Stewart. Their rendition of Johnny Burnette’s “Baby Blue Eyes” was a bracing opener (later moved to the closing spot on their third album). Brian Setzer’s “Cryin’ Shame” included a killer extended jam and harmonica showcase, and the Lee Rocker/Slim Jim Phantom-authored “(She’ll Stay Just) One More Day” was a sophisticated piece of jump blues with a beautiful sax solo at its center and powerful central riff; Setzer’s “What’s Goin’ Down (Cross That Bridge),” in turn, was as fine a Bo Diddley tribute as had been done by any white artist since the 1960s and none of those three made it on to their American debut LP. Setzer’s “You Don’t Believe Me” oozed the spirit of Elmore James out of every guitar note, while “Gonna Ball” and “Wicked Whisky” were exercises in rockabilly primitivism. “Rev It Up and Go” was an impassioned Chuck Berry homage that also obliquely acknowledged the Beach Boys’ service in making his riffs work in a uniquely white suburban context. “Lonely Summer Nights” also proved that this band could handle the ballad side of ’50s music with the best of them when they wanted to. And “Crazy Mixed Up Kids” was a psychobilly instrumental workout par excellence.
1. Baby Blue Eyes (2:49)
2. Little Miss Prissy (3:01)
3. Wasn’t That Good (2:45)
4. Cryin’ Shame (3:30)
5. (She’ll Stay Just) One More Day (3:42)
1. You Don’t Believe Me (2:58)
2. Gonna Ball (3:15)
3. Wicked Whisky (2:17
4. Rev It Up and Go (2:28)
5. Lonely Summer Nights (3:21)
6. Crazy Mixed-Up Kid (2:40)
Artist: The Jacksons
Genre: Soul, Disco, Live
“The Jacksons Live!” is a live album by The Jacksons, recorded during their North American tour in fall 1981, known as the “Triumph Tour”, and released in November 1981. The live double album was culled from recordings made on August 13, 1981 on the tour’s stops in Buffalo, NY; Providence, RI; Atlanta, GA; and New York City, NY. The 1981 live show featured songs from the group’s album “Triumph”, two songs from “Destiny”, a medley of their Motown hits, and five songs from lead singer Michael’s solo album “Off the Wall”.
It’s easy to forget, in the wake of a decade of bizarre behavior, rumors, and innuendo surrounding Michael Jackson that the Jacksons were once known solely for being a major music franchise. This live album, which was pretty obscure in its original double-LP vinyl version, is a reminder of how great an act they were, and captures what was just about the end of Michael Jackson’s work with the family group, all of it very much on a high-note. Live opens with a pounding, powerful rendition of “Can You Feel It” and, with one exception, never lets up, pushing on through a high-velocity and high-articulation version of “Things I Do for You,” and a soaring “Off the Wall.” There’s an unfortunate lag where Michael Jackson slows things down for “Ben” (arguably the nadir of his Motown career), but “This Place Hotel” and the far more effective ballad “She’s Out of My Life” make up for that lapse. The last section of the album, commencing with Off the Wall’s “Rock With You,” is practically a live rendition of that album, and so bracing as to almost exhaust the listener; and the preceding medley of their early Motown hits is just about worth the asking price of the disc by itself. On the down side, there are no notes and barely any credits, and the volume is set a bit low, but it pumps up beautifully with virtually no excess noise. The album is worth tracking down as an artifact of a simpler, more unabashedly joyous time in music, as well as the family’s history.
01. Opening/Can You Feel It (6:04)
02. Things I Do for You (3:38)
03. Off the Wall (4:00)
04. Ben (3:52)
01. Heartbreak Hotel (4:40)
02. She’s Out of My Life (4:48)
03. Movie and Rap, Medley: I Want You Back / Never Can Say Goodbye / Got to Be There (3:04)
04. Medley: I Want You Back / ABC / The Love You Save (2:55)
01. I’ll Be There (3:12)
02. Rock with You (3:59)
03. Lovely One (6:28)
01. Workin’ Day and Night (6:53)
02. Don’t Stop ’til You Get Enough (4:22)
03. Shake Your Body (Down to the Ground) (8:34)
Title: Malice In Wonderland
Genre: Hard Rock
“Malice In Wonderland” is the eleventh studio album by the Scottish hard rock band Nazareth, released in 1980.
As the 1980s began, Nazareth decided to return to the AOR experimentation they had toyed with during the 1970s on albums like “Close Enough for Rock & Roll” and “Play ‘N the Game”. They also made a play for AOR viability by hiring West Coast session legend Jeff “Skunk” Baxter to produce the album. However, they managed to retain their identity as a hard rocking group this time out by tempering their pop experimentation with a tougher sound that took advantage of their new dual-guitar lineup. The end result is an album that effectively blends the energy and firepower that fueled Nazareth’s best hard rock recordings with a slick, radio-friendly soundscape that is easy on the ears. A good example of this careful balance is the album opener “Holiday,” a witty send-up of rich rock & rollers that effectively layers a sing-along chorus done in a mock-calypso style and some slick harmonies over its boogie beat and fat power chords. Other experimental highlights include “Big Boy,” a mid-tempo rocker with a reggae chorus, and “Ship of Dreams,” an acoustic rocker with a Spanish-inspired flamenco melody. Meanwhile, the group satisfies their hard rock fanbase with tracks like “Talkin to One of the Boys,” a lightning-speed rocker built on a blinding dual-guitar riff, and “Showdown at the Border,” an insistent guitar showcase with riffs and solos to spare. Malice in Wonderland also produced a notable hit for Nazareth in “Heart’s Grown Cold,” a kiss-off ballad that starts with a delicate acoustic melody and builds into an all-stops-out production where bombastic guitars support a group of backup singers wailing the song’s chorus. All in all, “Malice in Wonderland” is one of the high points in Nazareth’s career and the best-ever fusion of their hard rock and AOR tendencies.
1. Holiday (3:29)
2. Showdown at the Border (4:11)
3. Talkin’ to One of the Boys (4:13)
4. Heart’s Grown Cold (4:14)
5. Fast Cars (4:35)
1. Big Boy (3:38)
2. Talkin’ ‘Bout Love (3:57)
3. Fallen Angel (4:44)
4. Ship of Dreams (4:09)
5. Turning a New Leaf (4:00)
Label: MCA Records
Genre: Hard Rock
“Power” is the tenth studio album by American rock band Kansas, released in 1986.
A year and a half after Kansas disbanded at the end of the “Drastic Measures” tour, former lead singer Steve Walsh returned to revive Kansas along with original band members Phil Ehart and Rich Williams. Guitarist Steve Morse, who joined at Ehart’s invitation after the two met at a concert in Atlanta, became significant in the new lineup. Bass guitarist and vocalist Billy Greer (who had worked with Walsh in the short-lived band Streets after he left Kansas in 1981) completed the lineup, which began rehearsing in July 1985 while Walsh was finishing up a tour as sideman for Cheap Trick. They released “Power” the following year.
The bouncy single “All I Wanted”, although out of character for Kansas, fit in well with the mid-’80s pop music scene and sparked a comeback for the band fueled by the song’s promotional video receiving heavy rotation on cable music video channels.
1. Silhouettes in Disguise (4:26)
2. Power (4:25)
3. All I Wanted (3:20)
4. Secret Service (4:42)
5. We’re Not Alone Anymore (4:16)
1. Musicatto (3:30)
2. Taking in the View (3:06)
3. Three Pretenders (3:50)
4. Tomb 19 (3:46)
5. Can’t Cry Anymore (4:01)
Artist: Creedence Clearwater Revival
Genre: Country Rock
Catalog# 5C 062-92153
“Pendulum” is the sixth studio album by American rock band Creedence Clearwater Revival, released by Fantasy Records on December 15, 1970.
“Pendulum” was the only studio album by the group that did not contain any cover songs; all tracks were written by John Fogerty. It was the last album the band did with Tom Fogerty, who would leave the band to start a solo career. It was also the last album to feature John Fogerty as the record’s solo producer.
“Pendulum” finds a first-class songwriter and craftsman pushing himself and his band to try new sounds, styles, and textures. His ambition results in a stumble “Rude Awakening 2″ portentously teeters on the verge of prog-rock, something CCR just can’t pull off but the rest of the record is excellent, with such great numbers as the bluesy groove “Pagan Baby,” the soulful vamp “Chameleon,” the moody “It’s Just a Thought”, the raver “Molina”, “Have You Ever Seen The Rain” and “Hey Tonight.
Most bands would kill for this to be their best stuff, and the fact that it’s tucked away on an album that even some fans forget illustrates what a tremendous band Creedence Clearwater Revival was.
1. Pagan Baby (6:25)
2. Sailor’s Lament (3:47)
3. Chameleon (3:05)
4. Have You Ever Seen the Rain? (2:39)
5. (Wish I Could) Hideaway (3:53)
1. Born to Move (5:39)
2. Hey Tonight (2:43)
3. It’s Just a Thought (3:45)
4. Molina (2:41)
5. Rude Awakening #2 (6:19)
Title: Lick It Up
Genre: Hard Rock
“Lick It Up” is the 11th studio album by the American rock band Kiss. On the day of the album’s release, Kiss appeared on MTV without their trademark makeup. It was the first public appearance without makeup by Kiss since the very early days of the band
Due to the underachievement of their exceptional 1982 comeback album, “Creatures of the Night”, Kiss knew the time was right to drop the makeup, so in September 1983 the band shocked their fans by unmasking on MTV. Their first non-makeup album, “Lick It Up”, followed soon after and successfully re-established the band among the heavy metal masses worldwide. The album’s success was spurred by MTV’s repeated airing of the imaginative video for the album’s strong title track, and songs such as “Exciter,” “Not for the Innocent,” “A Million to One,” and the rap-rocker “All Hell’s Breaking Loose” confirmed that the band was back on the right track. Vinnie Vincent again proved to be a worthy replacement to original guitarist Ace Frehley but would unfortunately leave the band after the completion of the “Lick It Up” worldwide tour. “Lick It Up” is undoubtedly Kiss’ best non-makeup album.
1. Exciter (4:10)
2. Not for the Innocent (4:22)
3. Lick It Up (3:56)
4. Young and Wasted (4:05)
5. Gimme More (3:43)
1. All Hell’s Breakin’ Loose (4:34)
2. A Million to One (4:17)
3. Fits Like a Glove (4:04)
4. Dance All Over Your Face (4:16)
5. And on the 8th Day (4:02)
Artist: Barry Manilow
Title: If I Should Love Again
Genre: Easy Listening
“If I Should Love Again” is the eighth studio album released by singer and songwriter Barry Manilow. The album was recorded at United Western Recording Studios in Los Angeles, California. Barry refers to it as “The most romantic album that I ever made”, and remarks “I was so caught up in romance that I actually wrote music and lyrics to the title song while playing the piano facing the ocean, in a rented house on the beach in Atlantic City, New Jersey.” The album was released in 1981.
“If I Should Love Again” is classic Barry Manilow and yielded three Top 40 hits, “The Old Songs, “Somewhere Down the Road,” and the bright “Let’s Hang On.
Though those singles aren’t often considered classics in his oeuvre, they and most of this album are shamelessly well-crafted adult contemporary, “Break Down the Door” and “I Haven’t Changed the Room” being inoffensive exceptions. “No Other Love” is a swoony, romantic ballad (with strong lyrics like “There were no violins, there were no soft guitars, time comes and goes like music in a play”) that plays out exactly as it should, so that you can’t imagine there being another way to produce it. Turning “Somewhere Down the Road” from a melancholy piano ballad to an anthem shows that Manilow’s in fine form. The song becomes so inspirational you almost want to salute the flag.
1. The Old Songs (4:43)
2. Let’s Hang On (3:12)
3. If I Should Love Again (5:33)
4. Don’t Fall in Love with Me (3:39)
5. Break Down the Door (3:04)
1. Somewhere Down the Road (4:00)
2. No Other Love (4:36)
3. Fools Get Lucky (4:11)
4. I Haven’t Changed the Room (2:16)
5. Let’s Take All Night (to Say Goodbye) (3:36)
Artist: Heaven 17
Title: How Men Are
“How Men Are” is the third album by the English synthpop group Heaven 17, released in September 1984 by Virgin Records.
It all came together for Heaven 17 on this album, and as a result it is by far their strongest, most brilliant album. Combining their various influences (including R&B, pop, dance, electronica), Heaven 17 fused these styles together to create an almost perfect sound. There is simply not a weak track on the album. Highlights are numerous, including the very long but very wonderful “And That’s No Lie.” A strong melody, stunning vocals from Glenn Gregory, and tight production equal a fascinating glimpse into the human struggle. Adding a number of session players, including a guitarist, Heaven 17 was able to expand and build on their solid sound. Gregory is also allowed to branch out on this album and write more personal and political statements that were not clearly heard on their first two albums.
Three singles were released from this album: “Sunset Now”, “This is Mine and an edited remix of “…(And That’s No Lie)”.
1. Five Minutes to Midnight (3:46)
2. Sunset Now” (3:35)
3. This Is Mine (3:51)
4. The Fuse (3:05)
5. Shame is on the Rocks (3:59)
1. The Skin I’m In (3:46)
2. Flamedown (2:59)
3. Reputation (3:03)
4. …(And That’s No Lie) (10:02)
Title: Eye Of The Tiger
Label: Scotti Brothers Records
Catalog# SCT CX 85845
“Eye Of The Tiger” is the third album by American rock band Survivor, released in 1982. It features the title track, which is the theme song of the film Rocky III.
“Feels Like Love” is a catchy, passionate rocker with impossibly good harmonies. “I’m Not That Man Anymore” is a dramatic power ballad that rocks in spots. “Ever Since The World Began” should have been a huge hit a spine tingling, heartfelt ballad that touches the soul. “American Heartbeat” was a top 20 hit, heavy on the keyboards that is a prototype Survivor anthem of that time.
1. Eye of the Tiger (4:06)
2. Feels Like Love (4:08)
3. Hesitation Dance (3:52)
4. The One That Really Matters (3:32)
5. I’m Not That Man Anymore (4:49)
1. Children of the Night (4:45)
2. Ever Since the World Began (3:48)
3. American Heartbeat (4:10)
4. Silver Girl (4:52)
Artist: Rose Royce
Title: Jump Street
Label: Warner Bros.
Genre: Funk, Soul
Catalog# WB 56958
Interestingly enough this album features the bands most cinematic and abstract takes on their music since Strikes Again four years earlier. It also seems the inspiration for their music had changed too. Always taking on a heavily arranged,almost operatic approach to their funk even after the cinematic soul/funk era came to an end this album is more stripped down,urban and in many ways focused on jazz. The title song opens the album on a surprisingly organic funk note with the horns taking presidents over the synthesizers. Same goes for the 11 minute album centerpiece “R.R Express”. And when the synthesizers do appear on these songs they are used in the most colorful,abstract sense-with rather warped melodic ideas. “Illusions” takes this to the next level with it’s jazz-fusion style arrangement and Richee’s scaling,almost vocalese style of delivery. The ballads here take on a totally different style than before-with “Famous Last Words” and “Tell Me That I’m Dreaming” taking on darker minor chords and eerie synth arrangements. “Please Return Your Love To Me” grafts the same approach to a more traditional Rose Royce ballad.
The vocals of Ricci Benson (who replaced original lead singer, Gwen Dickey, an album ago) are spot on.
1. Jump Street (3:59)
2. Illusions (3:54)
3. R.R. Express (11:58)
1. Famous Last Words (6:05)
2. Tell Me That I’m Dreaming (4:22)
3. Please Return Your Love To Me (5:18)
4. Fight It (3:27)
Artist: Michael Jackson
Title: Off The Wall
Catalog# EPC 83468
“Off The Wall” is the fifth studio album by the American recording artist Michael Jackson, released August 10, 1979 on Epic Records, after Jackson’s critically well-received film performance in “The Wiz”. While working on that project, Jackson and Quincy Jones had become friends, and Jones agreed to work with Jackson on his next studio album. Recording sessions took place between December 1978 and June 1979 at Allen Zentz Recording, Westlake Recording Studios, and Cherokee Studios in Los Angeles, California. Jackson collaborated with a number of other writers and performers such as Paul McCartney, Stevie Wonder and Rod Temperton. Five singles were released from the album. Jackson wrote three of the songs himself, including the Platinum-certified lead single, “Don’t Stop ’til You Get Enough”. The record was a departure from Jackson’s previous work for Motown.
1. Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough (6:02)
2. Rock With You (3:38)
3. Working Day And Night (5:12)
4. Get On The Floor (4:44)
1. Off The Wall (4:04)
2. Girlfriend (3:04)
3. She’s Out Of My Life (3:36)
4. I Can’t Help It (4:27)
5. It’s The Falling In Love (3:46)
6. Burn This Disco Out (3:38)
Artist: The League Unlimited Orchestra
Title: Love And Dancing
Genre: Synthpop, Instrumental
“Love and Dancing” is a remix album released by the British synthpop band The Human League in 1982. It was released under the name “The League Unlimited Orchestra” as a nod to Barry White’s disco-era Love Unlimited Orchestra. The album was principally the idea and work of producer Martin Rushent and contained remixes of many of the songs from their multi-platinum selling album “Dare”, along with a version of the track “Hard Times”, which had originally been the B-side of the single “Love Action”. It was conceived and released to take advantage of the unexpected huge success of “Dare” and was also designed to buy the Human League time to work on new material.
1. Hard Times (5:40)
2. Love Action (I Believe in Love) (5:12)
3. Don’t You Want Me (7:18)
1. Things That Dreams Are Made Of (5:10)
2. Do or Die (4:36)
3. Seconds (2:25)
4. Open Your Heart (2:35)
5. The Sound of the Crowd (2:55)
Artist: Stars On 45
Title: Longplay Album Volume II
Genre: Disco, Medley
“Longplay Album Volume II” was the second album by the Dutch soundalike studio group Stars on 45, a novelty pop act that was briefly very popular in the United Kingdom, throughout Europe, the United States and Australia in the early 1980s. The group later shortened its name to Stars On in the U.S., while in the U.K. and Ireland it was known as Starsound. The band, which consisted solely of studio session musicians under the direction of Jaap Eggermont, formerly of Golden Earring, popularized the medley, by recreating hit songs as faithfully as possible and stringing them together, with a common tempo and relentless underlying drum track.
The opening title of side one “Star Wars and Other Hits”, strung together an assortment of instrumental intros to songs from a wide variety of genres.
The soul/R&B/folk rock part of the 12″ “More Stars” medley was placed as track two.
Motown hits and Supremes Medley as track three
The ABBA medley was extended with another six titles and placed on side two followed by a seven minute extended version of the “More Stars” single’s B-side “’45 Stars Get Ready”.
01. Star Wars Main Title
02. Can’t Give You Anything (But My Love)
03. Kung-Fu Fighting
05. Alright Now
07. Do You Think I’m Sexy
08. Ma Baker
10. The Good, The Bad And The Ugly
11. Don’t Stop (Till You Get Enough)
12. Theme From Mash (Theme From M*A*S*H*)
13. The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Anymore
14. Overture From Tommy
15. Get Off
16. Stars On 45
17. Baker Street
18. Bette Davis’ Eyes
19. Eve Of The War
20. Stars On 45
21. Papa Was A Rolling Stone
22. Dance To The Music
23. Sugar Baby Love
24. Papa Was A Rolling Stone
25. Let’s Go To San Francisco
26. A Horse With No Name
27. Monday Monday
28. San Francisco (Be Sure To Wear Some Flowers In Your Hair)
29. California Dreamin’
30. Eve Of Destruction
31. Cracklin’ Rosie
32. Do Wah Diddy
33. A Lover’s Concerto
34. Reach Out I’ll Be There
35. Sound Of Silence
36. Tears Of A Clown
37. Stop In The Name Of Love
38. Love Child
40. Someday We’ll Be Together
41. Stars On 45
42. Baby Love
43. Love Is Here And Now You’re Gone
44. Where Did Our Love Go
45. I Hear A Symphony
46. You Keep Me Hanging On
47. Ain’t No Mountain High Enough
48. Stars On 45 (2)
01. Stars On 45 (2)
04. Bang A Boomerang
05. Money Money Money
06. Knowing Me, Knowing You
08. The Winner Takes It All
09. Souper Trouper (Long Version)
10. Stars On 45
11. Dum Dum Diddle
12. Lay All Your Love On Me
13. On And On And On
14. Super Trouper
15. Summer Night City
16. Gimme Gimme Gimme (A Man After Midnight)
17. Stars On 45 (2)
2. ’45 Stars Get Ready (7:08)
Artist: Barry White
Label: Unlimited Gold
Genre: Soul, Funk
Barry White’s third release (1982) on his own Unlimited Gold label is more an extension of the second, “Sheet Music.” The title cut touts a “change” in the Maestro’s musical direction but such a path doesn’t fit the trademark White sound. Restraining the use of strings and full orchestra, White goes for a funkier sound that, for this listener, just doesn’t work. It wouldn’t be until his end-of-the-decade releases on A&M that he would return to form that made him such a success in the seventies.
1. Change (6:12)
2. Turnin’ On, Tunin’ In (To Your Love) (5:13)
3. Let’s Make Tonight (An Evening To Remember) (5:09)
4. Don’t Tell Me About Heartaches (6:52)
1. Passion (6:58)
2. I’ve Got That Love Fever (5:11)
3. I Like You, You Like M e (5:30)
4. It’s All About Love (4:20)
Artist: Orchestral Manouvres In The Dark
Genre: Electro, Synthpop
“Organisation” is an album by Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, released in 1980. As with all OMD’s early sleeve art, it was created by Peter Saville Associates and features a photograph by Richard Nutt of the cloud-covered peak of Marsco, in the Red Cuillin hills, overlooking Glen Sligachan on the Isle of Skye with Allt Dearg Mòr in the foreground. The album’s title refers to the band Organisation, a precursor to Kraftwerk.
The album is notable for its melancholy tone. The band said that at the time they had been heavily influenced by Joy Division; this can be traced through Organisation’s use of jarring drum sounds and moody songs. “VCL XI” is a good example of this sound. Also notable is OMD’s move away from pure Gary Numan-Kraftwerk-ian pop, embracing a grander sound, an increasing use of acoustic instruments, and sound collages.
“Enola Gay” was the only single released from the album. It could be perhaps perceived as deceiving, as it had little in common with the style of the rest of the album, even though its subject matter is poetically grim. It bears much in common with the sound of the group’s debut album. Andy McCluskey is noted as saying it was written at the time of most of the debut was written. “Motion and Heart” was also considered for a single release, but was dropped.
1. Enola Gay (3:33)
2. 2nd Thought (4:15)
3. VCL XI (3:50)
4. Motion and Heart (3:16)
5. Statues (4:30)
1. The Misunderstanding (4:55)
2. The More I See You (4:11)
3. Promise (4:51)
4. Stanlow (6:30)
Title: Wanna Be A Star
“Wanna Be A Star” is the ninth album by the Canadian rock band Chilliwack, released in 1981. At this point, the band had collapsed into a trio, without a full-time drummer, but leader Bill Henderson and guitarist/keyboardist/drummer Brian MacLeod had become a powerful songwriting team during the interim. The album track: “My Girl (Gone, Gone, Gone)”, became the group’s first hit since the 1979.
Overall the album is something of a concept album about the “rock and roll” lifestyle and the pursuit of fame. The leadoff track “Sign Here” is a reference to Chilliwack’s new quest for mainstream success, tempered by their brush with fame on Mushroom. This was the first album they recorded with Solid Gold Records in Canada, a new Toronto-based label.
1. Sign Here (2:57)
2. So You Wanna Be a Star (4:29)
3. Tell It to the Telephone (3:14)
4. Too Many Enemies (4:39)
5. Living In Stereo (4:49)
1. Mr. Rock (3:51)
2. My Girl (Gone, Gone, Gone) (4:16)
3. (Don’t Wanna) Live for a Living (3:22)
4. Walk On (3:38)
5. I Believe (3:57)
Genre: Soul, Funk
“Commodores 13″ is the tenth studio album by the Commodores, released in 1983. It is their first album after Lionel Richie left the group, and their last album with guitarist Thomas McClary before his departure from the band.
The lead vocals are handled by Walter Orange, Thomas McClary, and the Mean Machine’s Harold Hudson, who was an interim vocalist rather than an official full-time vocalist. Not surprisingly, the Commodores cover both their R&B bases and their pop bases, getting into everything from sleek keyboard funk (“Touchdown,” “Nothing Like a Woman”) to adult contemporary ballads (“Only You”). Meanwhile, “Ooo Woman You,” which McClary co-wrote with Melissa Manchester, is a catchy pop/rock number.
The song “Turn Off the Lights” was written as a sequel to 1981′s “Lady (You Bring Me Up)”.
1. I’m In Love (4:05)
2. Turn Off the Lights (4:20)
3. Nothing Like a Woman (4:56)
4. Captured (4:37)
1. Touchdown (4:30)
2. Welcome Home (4:20)
3. Ooo, Woman You (4:22)
4. Only You (4:10)
Artist: Herbie Hancock
Genre: Electro, Jazz-Funk
“Sound-System” is the thirty-sixth album by jazz pianist Herbie Hancock and the second of three albums with the Rockit Band. This album tried to capture the success of the previous Future Shock, with some more twists and turns.
“Junku” for instance, featured Foday Musa Suso and also was written for the 1984 Winter Olympics in Sarajevo. It also was used during Hancock’s appearance on the long-running NBC Saturday Night Live.
“Sound System” sounded like “Junku” in many ways, while “Karabali” featured Wayne Shorter (playing a lyricon, instead of a traditional saxophone) and went back to the days of Hancock’s African themed Mwandishi band.
1. Hardrock (6:10)
2. Metal Beat (4:56)
3. Karabali (5:17)
1. Junku (5:32)
2. People are Changing (6:05)
3. Sound System (5:55)
Artist: Stevie Wonder
Title: The Woman In Red (Soundtrack)
Genre: Soul, Funk
Catalog# ZL 72285
“The Woman In Red” Soundtrack released by Stevie Wonder on the Motown label. Also featuring Dionne Warwick, the LP was released in 1984 for the film of the same name. It featured Wonder’s biggest hit, “I Just Called to Say I Love You”, and also featured the follow-up hit, “Love Light in Flight”
The album featured Dionne Warwick on two duets and one solo.
1. The Woman in Red (4:39)
2. It’s You (With Dionne Warwick) (4:55)
3. It’s More Than You (Instrumental) (3:15)
4. I Just Called to Say I Love You (6:16)
1. Love Light in Flight (6:54)
2. Moments Aren’t Moments (Solo by Dionne Warwick) (4:32)
3. Weakness (With Dionne Warwick) (4:13)
4. Don’t Drive Drunk (6:33)