musicfanatic | 05/04/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"While much of this album is not Steve Miller's best work, it is certainly ok, I got this album, mainly for the songs "Keeps Me Wondering Why" and the full length version of "Abracadabra". The rest of the songs are not quite as good, but they aren't terrible, either. Of course, if you are a die-hard Steve Miller fan, you will want this, the casual fan probably wouldn't want this."
One Track Wonder
Two Tone Antoine | Brigg, North Lincs, UK | 04/26/2008
(1 out of 5 stars)
"There is little to commend this CD except the title track, which I happen to like very much. Others have been spectacularly dismissive, which is a shame.
The rest of the album is either dull or mediocre."
Last flawless Steve Miller album for awhile anyways
Terrence J. Reardon | Lake Worth (a west Palm Beach suburb), FL | 09/16/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The Steve Miller Band's twelfth studio album entitled Abracadabra was released in June of 1982.
After experiencing extremely disappointing sales of his 1981 album Circle of Love, Steve decided to release another album right away with Abracadabra. Steve (as always on guitars and vocals but suffering from some writer's block as he only had two new tunes for the album) retained the band on Circle of Love (bass player Gerald Johnson, drummer Gary Mallaber and keyboard player Byron Allred) and added two new guitarists Kenny Lee Lewis (who is still in the band today) and John Massaro (the two wrote much of the album aside two tracks) and record Abracadabra at Capitol Record Studios in early 1982 with help from ex-bass player Lonnie Turner and ex-guitarist Greg Douglass (both of whom last recorded with Steve in 1977 on Book of Dreams). The result is an album which some cry "sell out" and others say "gave Steve his last hit". I think it's a great album as I found out when I first got the cassette tape in September of 1987 (alongside The Beatles' Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band to begin my first year of Junior High School).
The opening "Keep Me Wondering Why" is a great rocker which was written by Kenny Lee Lewis. Next is the album's title track (written by Steve himself) and is the big hit from the album. The song would prove to be his last #1 pop hit in the summer/fall of 1982 and here it's in its full long version with outro and at over 5 minutes the longest track on the album. Next is the Lonnie Turner/Greg Douglass penned rocker "Something Special" which is another winner. We follow with the album's second single "Give It Up" (also penned by Steve Miller himself) and sounds like a slowed down version of "Heart Like a Wheel" but a great song. A shame the song didn't rise above #60 on the charts. Next is another nice tune out of "Never Say No" (penned by Lewis and Massaro) which ends side one on a rocking note and was the flip side to the title cut.
The second side begins with two songs written by John Massaro which is the New Wave rock sound of "Things I Told You" which is another great tune. We follow with "Young Girl's Heart" which is a nice song. Next is another Turner/Douglass composition which is the country-ish "Goodbye Love" which has some banjo-style guitar and some harmonica by either Steve or Norton Buffalo (who would join in time for the Abracadabra tour). Next is another great rocker penned by Lewis out of "Cool Magic" which is one of my favorite Steve Miller album tracks ever. We then end with the nice acoustic ballad "While I'm Waiting" penned by Massaro.
Abracadabra would become The Steve Miller Band's last album to reach the US Top 10 peaking at #3 and bringing him back to Platinum glory one more time as his career went into a slide for awhile after this (although his next great album would be 1986's Living In the 20th Century).