Having reissued the dB?s first two albums, "Stands For Decibels" and "Repercussion", it?s only natural and right that we delve back into their catalog for "Like This", their third album originally released on the Bearsvill... more »e label in 1984. By now, Chris Stamey had left the band for a solo career, but Peter Holsapple, Will Rigby and Gene Holder were still going strong (with production help by ex-Waitress Chris Butler) in fact, Holsapple declares in the notes that this is probably his favorite dB?s album. It?s definitely more straight-ahead than the first two, as Holsapple?s gorgeous songwriting comes to the fore. Another essential power pop exclusive from Collectors? Choice!« less
Having reissued the dB?s first two albums, "Stands For Decibels" and "Repercussion", it?s only natural and right that we delve back into their catalog for "Like This", their third album originally released on the Bearsville label in 1984. By now, Chris Stamey had left the band for a solo career, but Peter Holsapple, Will Rigby and Gene Holder were still going strong (with production help by ex-Waitress Chris Butler) in fact, Holsapple declares in the notes that this is probably his favorite dB?s album. It?s definitely more straight-ahead than the first two, as Holsapple?s gorgeous songwriting comes to the fore. Another essential power pop exclusive from Collectors? Choice!
Tim Brough | Springfield, PA United States | 06/07/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Besides being the best dB's album ever, this album had been criminally deleted and the CD's were fetching ungodly prices on the collectors/used market. Blessedly, this 2006 reissue corrects that injustce. It is, basically, the same as the Rhino issue with new liner notes, with some of the history of how "Like This" came to be.
Even though Chris Stamey had left the group, Peter Holsapple took the reigns and suddenly knocked off eleven near perfect power pop gems that all should have been massive hits when they were originally released way back in 1984. Unfortunately, what The dB's considered their major label break became an albatross. Bearsville Records took the gaspipe right about the same time "Like This" hit the stores, which meant an amazing record went straight into promotional oblivion.
And that really bites. "Love Is For Lovers" and "Spy In The House Of Love" swung so hard it hurt (the CD even includes the dance remix of "Spy"). "Lonely Is As Lonely Does" is quite possibly the best song that Holsapple ever wrote. And who can deny the greatness of a lyric like "I can understand how you'd want a better man, but why'd you wanna make him out of me?" from "Spitting In The Wind." This was pop with power, ranking with likes of Cheap Trick and veering just behind southern brothers R.E.M.
You can hear the direction that Holsapple was preparing to steer the band for their next album, the criminally out of print "The Sound Of Music" on IRS records. "On The Waterfront" shows psychedelic leanings, and the near country "White Train" close the album out with promise of more incredible music to come. (Country duo Foster and Lloyd even had a minor hit with "White Train.")
Unfortunately, The dB's never quite caught their break. Legal fights with Bearsville (they were trapped in their contract even though the label had gone out of business!) and IRS's indifference to "The Sound Of Music" doomed the band to a breakup soon after a tour with R.E.M. in 1988 (Holsapple later sat in on a few tours with that band).
Now that you can find a copy of The dB's "Like This," get it. You'll love it too."
Brian J. Greene | Durham, NC | 06/07/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This reissue had to happen sooner or later and I'm so glad it did. If you were around and into the Paisley Underground/Jangle Pop/American guitar band sounds in the mid-to-late 80's, the dB's were on your radar. When they still had Chris Stamey writing and singing half the songs, they were a quirkier/weirder/more new wave-y band. On this, the first record where Peter Holsapple became the main frontman and chief songwriter/singer, the feel took on a little more of a rootsy tinge. Still, the heart of the dB's was power pop, and "Love is For Lovers," the opener, is one of the great power pop songs of all time. And it is followed by "She Got Soul," which also deserves a place in the power pop Hall of Fame. Holsapple has always been a great ballad writer, and "Lonely Is As Lonely Does" is him at his sad song best. Then there are the unforgettable anthems, "Amplifier" and "Spy in the House of Love." The bonus track, a remixed version of "Spy" with extra beats, is a hoot - the dB's as nightclub music (not so sure about that, but it's funny)."
"I love the dBs, just like all their other fans, but have to grudgingly admit that they've had an extremely spotty batting average...But on this disc they really got it right...Every track connects, from the snarky, gallows humor of "Amplifier" to the anthemic "Love is for lovers" - this is one splendid ride...
Rumor has it that they've reunited - hopefully they'll cook up some more stuff this hot."
A must have!
Kate Black | NYC | 03/14/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Like This" is a must have for any fan of power-pop.
This is The dBs after Stamey left the band, and their loss is our gain. Peter Holsapple took over primary writing duties for this and cranked out an incredible collection of tunes. It's criminal that this record never received the promotion it deserved.
"Spitting Into The Wind" is driving, angry, and (as mentioned by another reviewer) has one of the funniest, most cutting lyrics ever -- "I can understand how you'd want a better man, but why'd you wanna make him out of me?"
"Amplifier" is a touching song about Danny, a musician who killed himself after his girlfriend moved out and took everything he owned except his amp.
"She Got Soul" is one of my personal favorites, just for the line, "She got soul, but I don't know... Every girl I know has got some soul wrapped around her finger like a twenty dollar ring."
Peter Holsapple really shines on this record. It sounds as fresh today as it did when it was released 24 years ago."