Kevin H. (spankrabbit) from TAMPA, FL Reviewed on 1/14/2007...
This is the US edition, not import.
firstname.lastname@example.org | indianapolis | 01/03/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"grace jones is one of the best ,most underrated vocalists in the music industry.i was only a teenager when i bought this as i stumbled upon "private life" in some b-movie and fell in love with it. this album is her best hands down!! "the hunter gets captured by the game" the smokey robinson song she blows away and her cover of the normal's "warm leatherette" was no small feat either.the band is the same as the other island releases.one cannot help but wonder when listening to this why grace hasn't come back with such a mindblowing return and released an album in so long! all of her albums are good but this one forever remains special due to the vocals and the musicians accompanying her.rock,soul,reggae, and some lounge as well---what else is there?!! a great cd to start with for all curious about the one and only GRACE!"
One of the best albums of 1980
kireviewer | Sunnyvale, Ca United States | 07/01/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"What great albums were released in 1980? This and maybe Pink Floyd's The Wall (and that isn't even the best of Pink Floyd).
This CD is 46 minutes long (I have seen reports that the original LP and CD were shorter, but I don't think that is true). The sound quality is very good to excellent.
Before this, Grace Jones was doing disco and lavish pop songs. (Unlike what someone said, her first 3 albums have been available on CD). These did not suit her voice well at all and were not very successful.....except amoung the Gay community where she became known as the Queen of the Gay Discos.
On Warm Leatherette, Grace transforms to a electronica/new wave style. At the time it was released, it was underground, edgy and subversive. It was at the forefront of the video rock era, being supported with music videos on "underground" TV programs, about a year before MTV was launched. I think that the music still holds up today.
She covers a lot of hits from the day. Her versions are much better than the orignals, and the originals are pretty good. Her version of Love Is A Drug is much better than Roxy Music, which could get to be tedious. She also greatly improves on Tom Petty's Breakout. I am even amazed that she could make Private Life into an even better song than what the Pretenders did with it.
This CD was coproduced by Sly Dunbar and Robbie Shakespeare who were big in the raggae scene, along with Chris Blackwell who cofounded Virgin and was big in Progressive and early New Wave Sound. The music comes off as an electronic hybrid, with lush sounds of progressive rock along with staccato rhythms of raggae. But the music sounds like neither.
There are some lesser parts, like Rolling Stone and Hunter, where the music trends more to her pop days. But, these songs are still fairly good.
As good as the covers are, the really powerhouse is the title track, Warm Leatherette. At the time, 26 years ago, it was so shocking it may have offended some. Today, it may seem tame, but I still think the music and rhythm are explosive.
After this, Jones would continue putting on several very good New Wave/disco dance type albums. But, I still think this is her best."
THE REINVENTION TOUR DE FORCE
Steven R. Thornton | Phoenix AZ by the way of Philadelphia, PA United S | 03/17/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"WARM LEATHERETTE is Grace Jones career defining moment. This one album single-handly transformed her into ICON status. No other album since the 26 years it has been released combined effortlessly R&B, Rock, Funk and Reggae that was rounded off with a splash of New Wave. From the intense energy of LOVE IS THE DRUG (MY FAVORITE GJ TRACK), to the Caribbean-Parisian flavor of PARS, the conviction of songs PRIVATE LIFE and the title track WARM LEATHERETTE, this album proves that image and music do go hand in hand. We are so right now dying for a Grace Jones truimph return! We need her more than ever now in today's boring-one dimensional popular music landscape."
A RADICAL MOVE
Pieter | Johannesburg | 07/07/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Warm Leatherette caused a stir when released in 1980 as Grace Jones had been a disco singer since her 1977 debut Portfolio through the albums Fame and Muse. The change was drastic as the Jamaican musicians Sly Dunbar & Robbie Shakespeare gave her an innovative blend of rock, dub & reggae on songs by inter alia Chrissie Hynde, Bryan Ferry, Tom Petty, Daniel Miller and Barry Reynolds. It worked; Jones earned the respect of the rock critics whilst retaining her disco devotees.
The disturbing title track, a cover of an obscure single by The Normal, climaxes with the phrase "let's make LUURVE/before we die." Unlike the synth-pop original, Grace's vocal is filled with drama and accentuated by crashing cymbals. This contrasts markedly with her controlled version of The Pretenders' Private Life which bobs by on a bouncy reggae beat over which Ms Jones sings or talks in a scornful tone. The tempo picks up for Roxy Music's Love Is The Drug that gets an almost throwaway treatment with a lengthy, meandering exit.
No Grace Jones album is complete without the ballads. Smokey Robinson's The Hunter Gets Captured by the Game occasionally encounters twittering birdsong as it languidly lilts along. Then the mood changes first to anger on BullXcrement, a forceful protest song shot through with cynicism and dissonant guitars, and then to icy aloofness on the Tom Petty composition Breakdown. The album ends on a tuneful & romantic note with Pars, in keeping with the Jones tradition of a French chanson on every album.
The songs on Warm Leatherette fit her menacing, aloof or romantic delivery like boxing gloves. Grace deserved the acclaim for transcending the club scene and creating this appealing hybrid of New Wave & Jamaican sounds. She would work with Sly & Robbie on two more albums, Nightclubbing & Living My Life, before pursuing the soulful pop found on 1986's Inside Story and Bulletproof Heart of 1989. After a hiatus of nineteen years, Hurricane was released last year on which the dynamic duo once again added magic to the music of Grace. "