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Todd E. (tje1964) from MARIETTA, GA
Reviewed on 3/14/2015...
This is a pretty good CD by Al Stewart. Being that it's an independent label release from the 1990's, it sounds just a little bit D.I.Y. and it doesn't have the polish that his 1970's releases have. Overall it's very good.
carlos alonso | 10/28/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"With this CD, Al Stewart starts to turn away from some of the harder-edged production styles that had marked his two prior CDs ("Russians and Americans", "Last Days of the Century" -- though one will never mistake Mr. Stewart for a heavy metal practitioner) and back to a folk-rock mix characterized by his well-known 70s classics "Year of the Cat" and "Time Passages." "Famous Last Words" features the usually excellent musicianship (just check out the guitar-work on "Trespasser") we've come to expect of Al Stewart albums, as well as historically-oriented subject matters ("Peter on the White Sea" (Russian czar Peter the Great), "Charlotte Corday" (about the murderer of France's Marat), "Necromancer" (the resurging neo-Nazi movement in Germany) and an epic and sure-to-be-classic "Trains" that fits in the mode of "Roads to Moscow"). Somewhat unexpected are some lighter-themed, mood-lifting songs that should have been radio hits -- "Feel Like" (which opens the CD) and "Genie on a Table Top" (which manages to work in references to such things as a "marathon runner rolling in a field of snow"). "Hipposong" is a humorous take on the life of the average hippo and how misunderstood he is (find someone else to write about that!). The CD's only less-than-outstanding efforts are a couple of acceptable but somewhat forgettable pop-style offerings, "Don't Forget Me" and "Night Rolls In" (which closes out the CD). Fans of Al Stewart will embrace this one; non-fans will probably find take to it to the extent they took to (or didn't take to) the albums "Year of the Cat" or "Time Passages.""
A CD Full of Smiles
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Al Stewart just never misses! There is a very upbeat feel to this entire CD; it's refreshingly energizing (in contrast to Al's more thought-provoking productions, even when the topic is more serious than silly. The charmingly effusive "Feel Like" is a sets the cheery mood for the album. "Don't Forget Me" is a lovely, unexpectedly romantic tune, compelling me to remember my own partings, inevitably wiping away a tear as the song fades. "Genie on a Table Top" never fails to make me laugh with its sometimes outrageous similes (a simulated what????). "Trains" is evocative and haunting. And it's impossible not to play "Charlotte Corday" over and over again, a gentle little gem, beautifully performed. As always, an excellent offering from Mr. Stewart."