Nicole N. Pellegrini | Philadelphia, PA | 01/13/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"With their second--and unfortunately final--outing, the poprock trio consisting of Stewart Copeland (of Police fame), Stanley Clarke, and Deborah Holland pulled together to create a much more complex and satisfying album than their first. Copeland in particular sounds much freer and relaxed in his playing, laying out some of his more trademark complex rhythms and fanciful hi-hat work against Clarke's funky bass beat. Holland composes some richer songs here as well--particularly noteable being the moody "Through a Window" and the catchy "Love In the Ruins". Jackson Browne lends a hand and some wonderful vocals on "Another Place", and it's impossible to sit still through the great, near-improvisational energy of "Stone in My Shoe".
It's really a shame that this band called it quits just as they seemed to be finding their groove musically, and this is an album I still listen to frequently and with great appreciation. If you can find a copy of it, definitely give it a chance."
Wade C. Boring | Springfield, IL United States | 06/12/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This second release from Animal Logic is a very worthwhile listen. The songs are perhaps not as catchy as the first release, but they are just as interesting and more complex musically. The rhythm section of Copeland and Clarke is tight and Holland's dulcette vocals are incredible. This band was a melding of styles that on first glance wouldn't seem to work. Clarke is a jazz bassist, Copeland is a rock drummer with a very reggae style and Holland wrote country and western tunes. Together they melded into a very interesting (and I daresay progressive) trio. It's a shame that the critical acclaim didn't result in commercial success and they finished out their contract with a live CD that is almost impossible to find."
Robbo | New Zealand | 07/16/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I admit I mainly bought this album because I have always had a profound regard for Stuart Copeland's drumming, and becasue I already owned Animal Logic I. I think the Copeland drum work on Animal Logic II is better than on the first album, with some great variations built around the usual unique sound (does any other drummer sound or compare with Copeland). On top of this, Stanley Clarke is clearly a master base player, and Deborah Holland writes solid interesting songs which she sings well. This album is more rhythm-section driven, and overall the composition content is stronger and more even than the first album. The whole thing smacks of class and musicianship. As other reviewers have noted, an overlooked gem in many ways and it reinforces the sad demise of The Police with the subsequent underexposure of Copeland and Summers, who continued to quietly release albums demonstrating their superb musicianship. Get this album to remind yourself what a great drummer Copeland is and to listen to some classy pop musicianship."
Great trio, fantastic album
Jonathan Boyce | Fairfied, CT | 08/23/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Listening to this CD again is both immensely pleasurable and bittersweet as this is both Animal Logic's second and last one. Sad, but just as they hit their stride they disbanded.
There's not much more I can add to the other well written reviews here, other than to praise this CD as one to have. I put it as one of the best pop/rock CDs of the nineties. And it has aged well: in 2009 it still sounds fresh, solid, and innovative--and definitely not overproduced.
It has much to recommend it, not the least of which is Copeland's and Clarke's brilliant rhythm playing. They dominate so that the guitars and keyboards sound like filler.
But what carries this CD (as it does their first) is Holland's passionate singing. Lacking in a wide octave range, she more than makes up for it by throwing her soul into each and every song, and she puts the likes of Madonna and Whitney Houston to shame.
The songwriting here is a bit uneven (with some awkward lines), and definitely has a feminine perspective, but each song bears the mark of a real original voice. Two of the songs, In the Garden and Stone In My Shoe, are two of the best and most memorable pop/rock songs written in the last 25 years.