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What Are You Listening To?
[Image: 220px-Pretenders_album.jpg]

THE PRETENDERS "pretenders" vinyl 1979.

spurred on by MH playing and posting the band last week ive pulled out my five albums by the band
and am set to post them over the next week or so...
band's debut set...
side 1 of the vinyl is almost punkish, its fast, furious and pretty relentless
in its urgency...
the second side has what I call the trademark Pretenders sound...
one cover on it, Kinks' "stop your sobbing", love the original, love their version also...
album made top 10 just about everywhere and the massive hit "brass in pocket"
 did the same, top 10 everywhere, #1 in the UK.


least likeable track: space invader
best track: brass in pocket


1....precious ***
2....the phone call ***
3....up the neck **
4....tattooed love boys ** invader *
6....the wait **
7....stop your sobbing ***
8....kid ***
9....private life **
10..brass in pocket ***
11..lovers of today *
12..mystery achievement **

3s - 5
2s - 5
1s - 2

rating: 2.3

THE PRETENDERS "pretenders II"  vinyl,  1981

the band's second album...
they've managed to hone their trademark sound down-pat already...
album starts off slightly punkish like the first album...
some bad language in the first two tracks...
again, like the debut, nothing on here I don't like...
favourite track is a cover...
"I go to sleep", written by Ray Davies but the Kinks never recorded it,
he wrote it for The Applejacks, I vaguely remember the original, but not really...
BTW, the final song "Louie Louie" is not a cover of the old classic, its a Pretenders original!...
all up, a fantastic album...


least likeable track: Louie Louie
favourite track: I go to sleep


1....the adultress ***
2....bad boys get spanked ***
3....message of love ***
4....I go to sleep ***
5....birds of paradise ** of the town ***
7....pack it up **
8....waste not, want not ** after day **
10..jealous dogs **
11..the English roses **
12..Louie Louie **

3s - 5
2s - 7
1s - 0

rating: 2.4
[Image: Dave_Edmunds-Tracks_on_Wax_4_%28album_cover%29.jpg]

DAVE EDMUNDS "tracks on wax 4"  cd, 1978

Dave's fourth solo set...
all his usual 1950s sounding rock/rockabilly style on this one...
opening track, Trouble Boys, has a CCR sound once it kicks in...
What Looks Best On You has Phil and Don all over it...
elsewhere, three covers, all okay...
a very good album from Dave, but ive finally come to the conclusion that
Nick Lowe is my favourite of the two bandmates...


least likeable track: readers wives
favourite track: never been in love


1....trouble boys ***
2....never been in love ***
3....not a woman, not a child **
4....television **
5....what looks best on you ***
6....readers wives *
7....Deborah **
8....thread your needle ***
9....A-1 on the jukebox **
10..its my own business **
11..heart of the city **

3s - 4
2s - 6
1s - 1

rating:  2.3
[Image: 6131KXyYPhL._AC_US218_.jpg]

BLOOD,SWEAT & TEARS "spinning wheel-the best of"  cd,  2007

fifteen track compilation I picked up recently in a discount bin...
had only previously heard three of their tracks, all of which I love...
lots of jazz influences through this album, not that that's an issue, just saying....
love half this album...
only disliking their cover of the Beatle classic...
I really should invest in a couple of their early studio albums at some point as a lot of
the material on this album sounds like the stuff I own by The Band...


least likeable track: got to get you into my life
favourite track: John the Baptist


1....spinning wheel *** made me so very happy ***
3....God bless the children **
4....and when I die ***
5....smiling phases **
6....hi-de-ho ***
7....Lucricia Mac Evil *** and rain **
9....somethings coming on **
10..go down gamblin' **
11..John The Baptist ***
12..Lisa listen to me *** long, Dixie ** to get you into my life *
15..i love you more than ever **

3s - 7
2s - 7
1s - 1

rating: 2.4
[Image: 220px-The_Ballad_of_Calico_-_The_First_Edition.jpg]

KENNY ROGERS & THE FIRST EDITION "the ballad of Calico" vinyl, 1972:

the band's eighth studio set...
double vinyl...
a concept album...
story of a farmer who packs up and leaves his farm after one drought too many
and goes to Calico,California to seek his luck in the silver rush...
its not a Rogers album, all members take on vocal duties so it feels like the characters
the songs are portraying...
its soft rock, rock, country, folk, vaudeville...
album didn't sell very well only peaking at #118 in the US...
should have been a huge seller but wasn't, has over time been rated pretty high in lists
of "concept albums" and "great albums that failed on their initial release"..
well worth a listen or purchase if you find it anywhere...


worst track: rocking chair theme
best track: trigger happy kid

a couple of tracks that show the diversity of the songs within:

"Madame De Lil & Diabolical Bill"

"calico silver"

"harbor for my soul"

"Vachel Carling's Rubilator"


1....sunrise overture (instrumental) **
2....Calico silver ***
3....write me down ***
4....the way it used to be ***
5....Madame De Lil & Diabolical Bill *** teacher ***
7....road agent ***
8....Sally Grey's epitaph **
9....Dorsey, the mail carrying dog **
10..harbor for my soul **
11..Calico Saturday night (instrumental) **
12..trigger happy kid ***
13...Vachel Carling's Rubilator ***
14..empty handed compadres ** lonely room **
16..rocking chair theme (instrumental) *
17..Old Mojave Highway *** came up from town **
19..Calico silver (reprise) **

3s - 9
2s - 9
1s - 1

rating: 2.5
[Image: 220px-StopSmellRSCover.jpg]

RINGO STARR "stop and smell the roses"  vinyl, 1981:

Ringo's eighth studio set (he's released nineteen in total)…
I own five, three on vinyl, two on cd, and im embarrassed I own so many LOL....
like most of his albums he had a little help from his friends on this one also.... (pardon the pun)…
they all played on it, they all wrote songs for him...
those friends, Paul and George, Carl Perkins, Stephen Stills, Nilsson and Ron Wood...
John was supposed to contribute two tracks, "nobody told me" and "life begins at 40",
but both weren't ready at the time he was shot....
so, I love one track on here, "wrack my brain" written by George Harrison...
dislike half the album, and that's usually the way Ringo albums pan out for me...


worst track: drumming is my madness
best track: wrack my brain


1....private property **
2....wrack my brain ***
3....drumming is my madness *
4....attention **
5....stop and take time to smell the roses **
6....dead give away * belong to me **
8....sue to fall *
9....nice way *
10..back off boogaloo *

3s - 1
2s - 4
1s - 5

rating: 1.6
[Image: 220px-Ronstadt_WhatsNew.jpg]


Linda's twelfth studio set...
a covers album of old standards with, you guessed it, Nelson Riddle's orchestra
as her backing band...
this wasn't an easy album to make because her record label procrastinated for several years
over allowing her to do it because 'rock singers don't do standards/swing albums"...LOL, considering
the likes of McCartney, Rod Stewart, Dylan etc have all done them over the last few years...
I suppose Linda was decades ahead of the pack with this one...
her vocal abilities are totally suited to this kind of music, well actually, her vocals are suited to just about
any style of music...
album reached #3 in her homeland and ended up being the biggest album of her career in the US also...
nothing bad on here, just a fine representation of her love of that era of music...


worst track:  good-bye
favourite track: whats new


1....whats new **
2....ive got a crush on you **
3....guess i'll hang my tears out to dry **
4....crazy, he calls me **
5....someone to watch over me **
6....I don't stand a ghost of a chance with you **
7....what'll I do **
8....lover man **
9....good-bye **

3s - 0
2s - 9
1s - 0

rating: 2.0
[Image: 220px-BillyJoel_StormFront.jpg]

BILLY JOEL "storm front" cd, 1989:

his eleventh of thirteen studio albums...
his fifth and final of the decade (I own all five, its my favourite period of his music)…
I own seven overall and a compilation...
#1 in the US/AU, top 10 everywhere else...
multi platinum in his homeland, platinum just about everywhere else...
seven singles off it, the biggie was "we didn't start the fire" which even though is not my favourite
on the album is by far the most cleverest, that one details major events from the year he was born right
up to 1989...
love four of the tracks on here, tough call between the two ballads "Leningrad" and "Downeaster  'alexa' ".
Alexa wins out though on this occasion...
all up, another classy album from Jelly Bowl...


least favourite track: state of grace
favourite track: the Downeaster 'alexa'


1....that's not her style ***
2....we didn't start the fire **
3....the Downeaster 'alexa' ***
4....I go to extremes ***
5....shameless ***
6....storm front **
7....Leningrad ***
8....state of grace **
9....when in Rome **
10..and so it goes **

3s - 5
2s - 5
1s - 0

rating:  2.5
[Image: 220px-Get_Close_%28Pretenders_album_-_cover_art%29.jpg]

THE PRETENDERS "get close"  vinyl, 1986

the band's fourth of ten. I own five....
pretty much a solo album IMO...
no original members left except Hynde, the other two members
are basically session men...
production is more polished than their previous efforts, its also more
middle of the road stuff, almost pop at times...
still, a good album and it contains my favourite song of theirs...


least likeable tune: dance!
favourite song: hymn to her

tracks: baby ***
2....when I change my life **
3....light of the moon **! **
5....tradition of love **
6....don't get me wrong ***
7....I remember you ** much did you get for your soul? **
9....chill factor **
10..hymn to her *** full of mirrors **

3s - 3
2s - 8
1s - 0

rating: 2.2
[Image: 220px-Blue_Eyes_-_Elton_John_alt._cover.jpg]

ELTON JOHN "jump up!" vinyl, 1982

Reggie's 16th of 30 studio albums...
both Elton and Bernie hate this album, except for "blue eyes" and "empty garden"...
I don't hate the album, theres quite a bit to like, but those two tracks are streets ahead
of the rest of it....
anyway, the album is way better than its predecessor "the fox", but not as good as the 
follow up "too low for zero"....
"blue eyes" would almost certainly be in my top ten tracks of his and "empty garden" is
his tribute to slain friend John Lennon...
so, an okay album overall, nowhere near his best, but as always theres always a couple of gems
on his albums that make it all worthwhile...except "the fox" which was abysmal!


worst track: all quiet on the Western Front 
favourite track: blue eyes


1....Dear John **
2....spiteful child **
3....ball and chain ** boys *
5....I am your robot * eyes ***
7....empty garden ***
8....princess **
9....where have all the good times gone **
10..all quiet on the Western Front *

3s - 2
2s - 5
1s - 3

rating: 1.9

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