Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
North By Northwest
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
Beyond TRB & Sector 27
Winston Finlayson | Petoskey, Michigan - USA | 06/06/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Tom Robinson wrote and recorded a remarkable body of work from the first Tom Robinson Band album ("Power in the Darkness") in 1978 through this, his first proper solo album, in 1982. His early work was full of emotion, rage and intelligence, plus truly powerful rock and roll with a gift for a well-turned hook. The two TRB albums and the Sector 27 LP (1980/81, his second band), distinguish themselves from the punk records of the time in that they were more 'rock' recordings than comtemporaneous punk albums while having the same (if not more) spirit and drive.I highly recommend all of these recordings up through "North by Northwest," especially to those who find that their Clash albums have lost none of their appeal after all these years. Robinson's music has much the same social/political view and his songwriting talent is easily on a par with Strummer / Jones.Neophytes are encouraged to start with the "Power in the Darkness" CD. "North by Northwest" may be the most difficult of Robinson's first four albums, and perhaps the darkest of mood, but that dark mood is captivating.My only caveat would be that, for those familiar with the original vinyl recordings, the track listing is different than the original US issue and, though I haven't checked to be sure, I think one or two songs ("Looking for a Bonfire," for one) have been remixed significantly. Upon the first couple of listenings, "Bonfire" sounds like it may be a radio or single mix. The synthesizer figure that snakes through the original recording sounds as though it has been brought up and brightened in the mix and the vocals have been changed and augmented (perhaps even re-recorded). To my ears, not an improvement and a minor disappointment, especially since "Bonfire" is one of this CD's (and Robinson's) best songs.That aside, the bonus tracks (5) are brilliant at best and interesting at least. The CD transfer is in general great and the packaging faithfully reproduces all of the original LP artwork.One final note: Tom Robinson can be heard online five days a week as a presenter on BBC Radio 6Music (weekdays, 7 - 10 p.m. - UK time). His show is called the "Evening Sequence" and I recommend it HIGHLY to all discerning music fans. It is a marvelous mix of music, old and new, along with frequently fascinating on-air guest interviews. If you have a high-speed internet connection, by all means check it out via the BBC website."