The most frequent query for pop-lovers might well be 'I really like that song on the radio, but is the album any good?'. It's a question that has long-vexed consumers' minds since the advent of hit singles being played on pop-music radio.
This album contains three smash hit singles, which you've probably heard either by constant over-exposure during the 80's, else via latterday movies/TV shows trying to evoke an 80's feel.
There's the 'angry young survivor-of-abuse' anthem "Shout"; the creamy Adult Contemporary swoosh of "Everybody Wants to Rule the World", in which the titular chorus seems like an afterthought; and "Head Over Heels", which isn't so much a song as an extended swoon, one I always play to death whenever I've got a crush.
After that, there's a big fat nothing - songs that define the term 'filler' - particularly obvious on Side Two. That starts off with a snoozefest of Adult Contemporary, a ballad called "I Believe", that defines forgettable before it's even over.
That proceeds to "Broken", which seems to exist solely as a teasing intro to "Head Over Heels", that followed by nearly 7 minutes of "Listen", which seemingly consists of fragments of tunes and samples that go nowhere, apparently intended to simply fill up the remaining 7 minutes of tape.
Side One is a little more substantial, which isn't to say that its two non-hits are really worth your time. "Mothers Talk" is just boringly stereotypical 80's funk, complete with obnoxious female soul backup singers, and "The Working Hour" has a lengthy sax solo intro designed to pad out the song's length, which is about the only memorable thing about what is a boring AOR ballad.
Even the hits seem padded out to stretch the album's thin supply of material, being longer than the single versions.
In sum then, the album only has eight songs, two of which don't even count as real songs, which actually only leaves six songs, of which only three are good. In other words, only buy the album cheap from a used bin, just for the great hit singles.Rated:
by Reviewer: Creative Noise
(blogging at Creative Noise