Excellent 2nd Album
Steve Guion | 07/04/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"For their second record, Dwight Twilley and Phil Seymour expanded their sound, working with producer/engineer Bob Schaper, adding lead guitarist Bill Pitcock IV, and bringing in guest musicians, including Tom Petty, on occasion, in addition to adding horns and strings on various tracks. The title track that kicks off the record is one of the hardest rocking things they ever cut. The songs, while just a slight notch below those on the original, remain terrific retro-pop tunes, illustrating why this group is held in such high regard among power pop aficionados, and is a large part of Twilley's legacy. - Stephen Thomas Erlewine, All Music GuideNote: The 1990 DCC/Shelter reissue was engineered for compact disc by Steve Hoffman and contains the original 1977 album cover art not available on the Capitol reissue, as well as complete song lyrics."
4 1/2 Stars
hyperbolium | 07/04/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is my favorite DT recording. No hits but very consistent. It's one of those that doesn't really grab you at first but really grows on you after repeated listenings. I personally rate it over 'Sincerely' although I know I'm in the minority on that one. Many of his prettiest ballads are here (That I Remember, and the Big Star-ish Sleeping). Trying To Find My Baby & Looking For The Magic are also great. Plus, you get Tom Petty, Sideman before he became Tom Petty, Rock Star.
The funky & fun title cut is a great opener - cleverly sung in the 3rd person (or perhaps by Phil Seymour) with great honky cat piano. And give that lead guitarist a gold pick or something - Man!
Like most "power pop" - if that's what you want to call this - lyrical content never gets too deep, nor needs to. It is what it is, and that's great. One slight negative: this reissue on Capitol used a cheesy cut-and-paste cover instead of the original used on the Shelter/DCC CD."
One of the greatest power-pop albums ever
hyperbolium | Earth, USA | 02/07/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Twilley's debut album (1976's "Sincerely") is often lorded over this sophomore effort, but it's this follow-up that is the band's high-water mark. Released in mid-1977 it landed in the middle of one of rock 'n' roll's highest power-pop apexes -- a time when the Nerves had split into the Plimsouls and The Beat, and where Tom Petty's debut was just a year old. Twilley and drummer/vocalist/bassist Phil Seymour added guitarist Bill Pitcock IV for this outing, and with touches of Memphis-styled horns, a James Newton-Howard string arrangement for "Sleeping," and a guest guitar part from Petty on "Looking for the Magic," they recorded one of the genre's best LPs.
This is an album in league with Big Star's first two, Petty's debut, the Nerve's 4-song EP and Matthew Sweet's "Girlfriend." High compliments, to be sure, but Twilley and Seymour plugged directly into that blend of heartbreaking pathos and mid-20s freedom that was late-70s power-pop. It's got the requisite Beatles, Byrds and Flamin' Groovies chime, but also a strong dollop of Sun-era slap-back echo, a few Buddy Holly styled hiccupping vocals, and elements of the glam-pop of Mott the Hoople and Edgar Winter.
Producer Bob Schaper and CD engineer Steve Hoffman create a fanstastically punchy sound that's especially kind to Seymour's powerful drumming (think Clem Burke, Jody Stephens and the like) and brilliantly interweaves the bands harmony singing into the overtones of the guitars. The cheesy keyboards of the band's debut give way to piano on a few tracks, and lots and lots of guitars. Seymour handles the majority of the bass playing, providing memorable riffs to accompany the hook-filled melodies.
This is a perfect example of the mood of the pop music (as opposed to chart-popular music) of late 1977 and early 1978. The '60s were over, the punk movement was energizing DIY efforts around the world, MTV had yet to re-aim the spotlight from music to video, and a supremely crafted pop-rock album like this could still get into the market place. If you have "#1 Record" "Radio City" "Black Vinyl Shoes" "Zero Hour" and "Failure" on your shelf, you should have this one."