Sweetly succinct, irresistible pop...
M J Heilbron Jr. | Long Beach, CA United States | 03/12/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Cool For Cats" is the album where Squeeze hit their stride, when Difford & Tilbrook were mentioned in the same sentences with Lennon & McCartney.
In retrospect, that seems hyperbolic, but I couldn't resist falling in love with this album. And Squeeze in general. Squeeze was a band to love.
As other reviewers have noted, the production here shows its' age, and it really wasn't that spectacular to begin with. This remaster (finally, thank you very much) presents the album as clean as it's ever gonna get.
You'll hardly notice, as the sheer tunefulness of these songs...the melodies that firmly lodge in your brain, the harmonies very suggestive of those Fab Four, the dizzying piano fills, locomotive drumming...it's a set of terrific songs. And Squeeze doesn't sit around wasting a lot of time...7 of the original 12 songs are under three minutes.
Many of them paint little English vignettes, as detailed as a small, independent film.
Personal favorites include the opener, "Slap and Tickle" with it's proto-synth-pop background;
"It's Not Cricket" - a lovely story-song with boinging bells and piano;
"Hop, Skip and Jump" - their best-bar-band-in-the-world song;
"Slightly Drunk" - for the opening line ""slightly drunk once again";
and the exquisite "Goodbye Girl"...
...heck, I could find something nice to say about pretty much every song on the record.
This one's up there with the greats, and pretty much essential to anyone who likes what was once called "power pop". Squeeze towers over that genre...and here's where it begins."
THE COOLEST VERSION OF THIS CD AVAILABLE!
BOB | LOS ANGELES, CA | 08/30/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Wondering why this particular mini-sleeve is the most expensive in the set of 7 Squeeze albums released earlier this year?
It's because there are not one, not two, not three, not even four, but FIVE album sleeves included in the package!
There is the original purple sleeve with embossed raised lettering. The other four 'sleeves are iridescent blue, yellow, pink and green (see images above, and if you want to have fun, run your mouse cursor over all of them quickly for a show).
A very "Cool" album just got even kewler!
The masters used for this album and the rest of the set are the same remasters done in '97. However, most or all of these have more bonus tracks, also remastered for these editions, than the U.K. '97 releases.
WHAT IS A JAPAN "MINI-LP-SLEEVE" CD?
Have you ever lamented the loss of one of the 20th Century's great art forms, the 12" vinyl LP jacket? Then "mini-LP-sleeve" CD's may be for you.
Mini-sleeve CDs are manufactured in Japan under license. The disc is packaged inside a 135MM X 135MM cardboard precision-miniature replica of the original classic vinyl-LP album. Also, anything contained in the original LP, such as gatefolds, booklets, lyric sheets, posters, printed LP sleeves, stickers, embosses, special LP cover paper/inks/textures and/or die cuts, are precisely replicated and included. An English-language lyric sheet is always included, even if the original LP did not have printed lyrics.
Then, there's the sonic quality: Often (but not always), mini-sleeves have dedicated remastering (20-Bit, 24-Bit, DSD, K2/K2HD, and/or HDCD), and can often (but not always) be superior to the audio on the same title anywhere else in the world. There also may be bonus tracks unavailable elsewhere.
Each Japan mini-sleeve has an "obi" ("oh-bee"), a removable Japan-language promotional strip. The obi lists the Japan street date of that particular release, the catalog number, the mastering info, and often the original album's release date. Bonus tracks are only listed on the obi, maintaining the integrity of the original LP artwork. The obi's are collectable, and should not be discarded.
All mini-sleeve releases are limited edition, but re-pressings/re-issues are becoming more common (again, not always). The enthusiasm of mini-sleeve collecting must be tempered, however, with avoiding fake mini-sleeves manufactured in Russia and distributed throughout the world, primarily on eBay. They are inferior in quality, worthless in collectable value, a total waste of money, and should be avoided at all costs."
Tezcatlipoca | Espinho,Portugal | 07/28/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"As Glenn Tilbrook and Chris Difford have said in more than one occasion "Cool for Cats" is their first proper pop album and the one that established the kind of sound they'd pursue in their career: colourful pop with clever,often tongue in cheek,lyrics.
Their debut was estimulatingly scattershot but John Cale's guerrilla production values often mangled their melodic sense in a way that until"Cool for Cats" they hadn't really begun to develop their potential.
Potential which is very much fulfilled in this,their sophomore effort."Cool for Cats" is an album crammed full with exquisitely arranged pop tunes owing much to the Kinks and the Beatles.
Standout tracks include their all time best"Up the Junction"and its gorgeous cross rhymed narrative,the oh so new wave "Revue",the medievalesque "It's not Cricket",the spooky "The Knack",the fantastic "Slightly Drunk" or the driving Jools Holland sung title track.
Squeeze at their most energetic and uncompromisingly goofy and poppy.
Tezcatlipoca from Espinho,Portugal"