Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Tails of Illusion
Genres: Pop, Rock
First time on CD for 1975 album from pop/rock outfit formed by Kenny Young (co-writer of the Drifters' classic 'Under The Boardwalk') & originally issued on the famous GTO label (home of Gary Glitter, Heatwave, Billy Ocean... more »
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First time on CD for 1975 album from pop/rock outfit formed by Kenny Young (co-writer of the Drifters' classic 'Under The Boardwalk') & originally issued on the famous GTO label (home of Gary Glitter, Heatwave, Billy Ocean, & Donna Summer). Includes two bonus tracks, 'Just One More Night' & 'Rude 4 Words', & original artwork. Cherry Red. 2004.
Too good to be bad; too bad to be good
Jeremy Diringer | Fredonia, New York, USA | 07/24/2006
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Fox's debut was full of cheesy effects and silly lyrics, and Noosha's schoolgirlish vocals made it delightfully campy fun. Listening to "Tales of Illusion," one can't help but get the feeling the band wanted to be taken seriously, and the guys wanted to get their chance to sing--a major misstep. The men lack vocal distinction and neither the melodies nor the lyrics are strong enough to counter their dullness. When the music strays from pop, it also tends to stray from Noosha's singing and starts to take itself seriously, but the band can't pull off the pretense of being a serious folk/country/blue-eyed soul outfit. And what the hell is up with the awkward, tacked-on intros? Click the drumsticks, count off and be done with it.
"Yuli Yuli" is one of the best of the lot, as it's fairly straightforward pop and wouldn't have been out of place on the first album. "Survival" is a male-sung, weak, meandering attempt at folk with a condescending lyric and wretched backing vocals (courtesy of Roger Taylor of Queen, as it turns out). "Strange Ships" is catchy and nearly great, but misses out due to an awkward trick: the song in progress segues straight into another one, then back to the original for no real purpose, other than having one of the men sing, apparently. "For Whatever It's Worth" is actually a pretty good male-sung track, sounding a bit like America, with a vague message of mysticism and some nice harmonizing around the chorus.
"Little Brown Box" tries for blue-eyed soul; it won't give Hall and Oates a run for their money, but it's alright if you don't take it seriously.
"Minor Therapy" is pleasant pop and another standout, though it could have done with some trimming. "Lily Sing" sits on the fence between folksy pop and country with a feather-light chorus hook; if they dropped the wannabe-country twang, it could have been truly great. "Kupu Kupu", ostensibly about losing one's virginity, drags on for nearly 6 minutes with a pointless intro and obnoxiously breathy backing vocals that grate on the nerves quickly. If they had sped it up and edited it judiciously, it could've been good. "Howdja" has Noosha trying to pull off Pat Benetar, but her light, fluffy tone doesn't quite fit in. "Me Without You" ends the album with an obnoxiously twangy, tears-in-yer-beer pop-country, but odds are it will annoy fans of either genre.
The CD includes two bonus tracks that are even more out of place. They certainly don't sound like the '75 sessions; my guess is mid-'90s dance. Neither cut is worthwhile. "Just One More Night" is ruined by jerky and undanceable start-stop bits, with awkward stabs at authentic dancehall reggae via wholly unnecessary toasting. "2 Rude 4 Words" is accidentally hilarious; whereas the first album was cute in its adolescent attempts at innuendo, this tosses aside all subtlety: "she slipped off her Playtex/they practiced safe sex". It's so over the top that, if they had cut out the obnoxious jafakin vocals (again!) and the dubbed-in sounds, it could have been decently funny.
Overall, this album fails to satisfy--it takes itself too seriously to appeal to fans of kitsch, but it's not good enough to be taken seriously. I want to like this album, but it fails to live up to the promise of the first album. It's indulgent and full of wasted potential, with a few good points amongst a disappointment."