Strong Swan-Song For The Wonderful Jim Carroll Band
Eric R. Last | San Bruno, CA United States | 10/31/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The Jim Carroll Band made 3 albums between 1980-1983. The strongest, and most well known, was the debut, "Catholic Boy", with it's great hit single "People Who Died". I presume that almost anyone with enough interest in Carroll to be reading this is already familiar with that song. "Catholic Boy" mined the rich lyrical terrain of Carroll's "Basketball Diaries" years as a teen junkie in New York, but what really made that album work so well was the tight, punchy punk/pop arrangements and the band that pulled it off flawlessly. The follow-up album, "Dry Dreams", was a major step down in quality. Carroll seemed adrift lyrically, although he was still often fascinating. The band seemed to lose the energy and drive that made the debut so appealing. For the third album, "I Write Your Name", they did a good job of righting the ship. It's not quite as strong as "Catholic Boy", but it's not far off. The songs "(No More) Luxuries", "Voices", "Freddy's Store", and especially the title track "I Write Your Name" are as punchy and powerful as the songs from "Catholic Boy". "Hold Back The Dream" is a lovely, haunting collaboration with Brian Marnell of San Francisco's underappreciated SVT. Shortly after, Marnell was dead, a heroin casualty. Hard to say how Jim Carroll managed to avoid Marnell's fate. After "I Write Your Name" failed to find an audience, The Jim Carroll Band split up. Carroll continued to write and publish his poetry and prose. He recorded one spoken word album, and in 1993 a best-of album, "A World Without Gravity", appeared. That collection is the only place to find any of the songs from "Dry Dreams" on CD. Finally, in 1998 Jim Carroll returned to music with "Pools Of Mercury" after a 15 year absence."
Better than thier classic
Eric R. Last | 11/22/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The first album "Catholic Boy" just isn't as good as this one. I don't care if it's a classic. Get this one if you like Jim Carroll but never really liked his music before."
The best Jim Carroll album yet
Eric R. Last | 05/05/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This album wraps up all your Rock, New Wave and Standard Pop Ballad needs in great lyrical package. If I had to choose only one Jim Carroll album this would be the one. Jim is the man."