Chris de Burgh's third album is one of ballads (as the liner notes inform us, in case listening to it doesn't make that clear), and it's certainly a mainly gentle, quiet release. There's no "Spanish Train", "Sin City" or "Patricia the Stripper" here either, in terms of controversial material, as he sings of wistful love and pastures anew (or something along those lines).
At its best, it's lovely, especially with "In A Country Churchyard", while the meditative "I Will" also has a certain haunting atmosphere. The jaunty "Summer Rain" and Caribbean-flavoured "Brazil" (sorry, I suppose that should be Rio-flavoured) provide two of the album's more lively moments, and they're reasonable, but stop short of being anything really rivetting,and that's where a problem lies - some of the material, like the opening two tracks, "Broken Wings" and "Round and Round", are just too slight to be particularly memorable, while the production is sparse, which might divide some.
And the closing "Perfect Day" doesn't really work. Another ballad, it tries to combine The Beatles' "Let It Be" with "Silent Night", almost as if de Burgh is attempting an ultimate conclusion to what the whole record has been about all along. It's a nice try, but a bit of a misfire.
Overall, At the End of a Perfect Day
is a good enough musical experience, but there's just not enough here to make it one of Chris de Burgh's best. And those who go for his racy moments, or apocalyptic stories, are unlikely to get a lot of pleasure out of it. Rated:
by Reviewer: The Doctor