Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Herb gets increasingly high-tech, but to great effect
Dave | United States | 04/07/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Herb Alpert credited "Bullish", this 1984 album, to "Herb Alpert Tijuana Brass", probably as a tie-in with a tour that Alpert went on around this time which did include four members of the original Tijuana Brass. None of the original Tijuana Brass appear on this album though, & with the glossy mid-'80s sheen of the album, it ain't exactly a return to his '60s sound either. Still, "Bullish" is an impossible-to-resist collection demonstrating that Alpert's ear for irresistible melody was as strong as ever.
"Struttin' On Five" was produced by Alpert & [Randy] Badazz & arranged by Andy Armer & Badazz, and the rest of the album was produced by Herb Alpert & John Barnes with the arrangements being credited to "John Barnes with Herb Alpert". The result is that half of the album's tracks have a majorly in-your-face, mid-'80s club dance feel to them. You might think that's a recipe for disaster, but it actually isn't--the album starts with the characteristically mid-tempo, but whomping, dramatic, & deathlessly catchy title track; the uptempo "Make A Wish" is super catchy, & the cover of "Maniac" though marred by typically grating vocals from Herb's wife Lani Hall, is still undeniably catchy and a lot of fun. The fast-paced "Struttin' On Five" is graced with insanely catchy trumpet hooks from Herb making it impossible to resist. The strongly Latin-pop flavored "Passion Play", written by Alpert & Barnes, is once again, infectiously catchy.
Naturally, there are some ballads here as well. The Alpert & Barnes-composed "Love Without Words" is gorgeous with a sumptous melody; there is a brief, jarring, and corny vocal section, but it's a minor gripe. Also written by Alpert & Barnes is the terrific "Life Is My Song", a wistful, nicely orchestrated album-closer. Barnes' gets in a solo composition with "Always Have A Dream", a very strong ballad in its own right.
Quite simply, Herb Alpert continued his '80s winning streak with this superb album--if you've got an allergy to glossy, mid-'80s 'dance-pop' production values, a lot of this album will probably get on your nerves, but any serious music listener can't go wrong with it. Don't expect to find this cheaply on CD, but you can probably get it cheap on vinyl, & it'd really be worth it to do so."