I'm probably alone on this, but I like True Stories
much more than Little Creatures
. Although I'd acknowledge that Little Creatures
is quite good, I don't really like it, the more I think about that album, the more irritated I get.
This one however, I do like and enjoy. That might sound like a travesty to some people, since this is probably the most hated Talking Heads album of all, but I'm indeed able to enjoy this album while I don't really enjoy Little Creatures
These nine songs featured in a movie directed by David Byrne, but this album isn't a soundtrack - the band simply play the songs - so this is in all respects a genuine Talking Heads album.
Now, I don't know exactly what people have against this album, the genre here is mainly 'pop', the same kind of silly pop as on Little Creatures
in fact, but less serious and more cheesy.
So what exactly is the accusation? Is it that the songs are too cheesy? Too simple? Too banal? I can't tell, I just think some of these songs are really good. My only complaint against the album is that two of the worst Talking Heads songs ever are placed back-to-back on Side One. Yes, I'm talking about "Puzzlin' Evidence" and "Hey Now".
"Puzzlin' Evidence" sounds like an intro tune to a kids cartoon show - fast, boppy, organ-dominated, and silly - and it goes on and on and on, with an awful Gospel choir chanting the title every two seconds. It's just too stupid and pointless to me. And "Hey Now" is even worse, sounding like something from a Disney cartoon - a really silly Caribbean-like tune - and damn, I can visualise all the creatures of the forest coming together to sing Hey, now! Hey, now! Hey, now, now!
, and that's an awful mental image.
Such material may work in the movie, but on vinyl it doesn't sound like the kind of fun I want ... I mean, "Hey Now" sounds like 'Hey you! Sitting in that chair! I demand you wave your hands in the air and sing along to our chorus that goes Hey, now! Hey, now! Hey, now, now! Hey, now! Hey, now! Hey, now, now!
for an eternity'. And that really isn't my cup of tea. I can't understand why it goes on for so long.
But that's my only complaint really, all the other songs are OK. "Papa Legba" is really slow, with lots of percussion and a 'World Beat' thing going on, probably mocking the stuff on Side Two of Remain In Light
- not bad really. And the opening "Love For Sale" is the most demented kind of rock 'n' roll - still, I like it, that's more my idea of fun.
"Wild, Wild Life" is a bit similar to "Love for Sale", except it ditches the demented riff and inserts some really catchy hooks instead, making for a great, silly pop tune! And I really love "Radio Head" and "People Like Us", they're both cute and catchy, and fun to sing along to. And there are ballads too - "Dream Operator" is a really pretty little 3/4 ballad. "City of Dreams" isn't as good, maybe too 'self-aware'.
But I don't see why people dislike those songs, even if they're from the band that wrote the far more weighty Fear of Music
, these songs are still OK!
Of course, I don't think True Stories
is great - sure, it doesn't hold a candle to More Songs About Buildings and Food
, and those two songs on Side One bring the rating down. But other than that, I do like this album.Rated:
by Reviewer: Fernando Canto
Posted: Monday 26th Sep 2016 7:55 PM
BS&T incorporated a horn section, and the result - called 'white horn rock' - was America's answer to British Art Rock. It was short-lived of course, but while it lasted it was a genuinely American contribution to the Art Rock genre.
Child Is Father to the Man
represents the birth of White Horn Rock, with Kooper bringing Katz onboard from the Blues Project.
The album doesn't contain any big hits, and the horns are not as prominent as they would become. Instead, they share the stage with Kooper's expert keyboard playing and singing, dishing out a blend of Classical and Jazz influences on a blues base.
The results are spectacular - the slow blues of "I Love You More Than You'll Ever Know" has some great playing by Katz; the odd but well-sung "Morning Glory"; a lounge/jazz interpretation of Nilsson's "Without Her"; the psychoanalysis-meets-"Eleanor Rigby" of "The Modern Adventures of Plato, Diogenes and Freud"; and much more.
The experimentation on "House in the Country", or Katz's "Meagan's Gypsy Eyes" (as close to psychedelia as the band got) doesn't always work, but Kooper's efforts on the rest of the album ensure such lesser moments are easily overlooked.
Horns in such a prominent role was virtually unprecedented at the time, and later adopted by Chicago. Kooper also continued using his creepy space-age Ondioline, an odd precursor to the synthesizer which sounds like high-pitched electronic bagpipes.Rated:
by Reviewer: Obscurity
Posted: Monday 26th Sep 2016 8:08 PM