One of my all-time favorites
Darrell Brogdon | Colorado, USA | 03/30/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Not only one of my all-time favorite albums but, in my opinion, one of Sting's best."
Don't Lose Faith In In Ten Summoner's Tales
Andre S. Grindle | Brewer Maine | 05/06/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Sting can often be referred to as a guy who spent his solo career up to this point trying to find new ways to be taken as seriously as possible. Well he was but that had it's effect;as wonderful as his jazzy,genre bending pop was at the end up the 80's he came off as more then a little pompous and full of himself. But there's a long journey from the brilliantly open ended The Dream of the Blue Turtles to his previous album to this,the overly serious (even for him) The Soul Cages. And this actually finds him in a very happy place. It's smack at the height of grunge and alt rock's angst ridden popularity and so Sting throws this at us. Everything about this album has a hopeful air about it,from the overly bright yellow cover by a church to the realived tone of the music. This is one of Sting's biggest commercial successess and is often enough described as his go at MOR pop. Fact is it's easy to forget how truly varied and peppy this album can be in between the lines. It's a true example of how a hit single can deceive someone in terms of a given artists direction. Obviously Sting still knows how to start his album off with a bang,the mildly R&B inflected "If I Ever Lose My Faith".Yeah it was kind of dancing around my head through most of 1993 but I enjoyed every minute of it,such a life affirming song and so sincere. The next song though reveals this album's hidden treasure.Aside from some of the hit songs this album largely consists of upbeat,rockier songs with a decidedly R&B bent-far removed from the chilly jazz overtones of some of his earlier work."Love Is Stronger Than Justice","Heavy Cloud No Rain","Saint Augustine In Hell" and "Something The Boy Said" all fit into that basic catagory with themes ranging from humor to irony to any in between.Of course there are the ballads;the big hit "Fields Of Gold",one of Sting's signiture songs along with the unique "Seven Days","It's Probably Me" to the wonderful "Shape Of My Heart"-either it's an anti war song or about inner conflicts but the metaphore of playing cards to a weapon of one sort or another really makes it's point in a fine poetic way."She's Too Good For Me" is the most plucky song here,an rocking almost Police-like ska/blues tune with a mild classical overtone that....well it at least links it to Sting. The final cut was always a personal favorite of mine."Epilogue (Nothing 'Bout Me" really brings it home with a lively horn packed soul rave up where he makes it clear that the media (the apparent figures of this tune) will never learn who he is purely by probing him and cannot get totally inside his head.An obvious statement but delivered with such a wit you can't help but laugh along with him at the irony of the press's approch to him. This album not only totally restored Sting's commercial status but ushered in a very successful phase for him as an artist and performer that....well in one way or another has'nt ebbed to this day. And considering this album has aged a whole lot better then most things from this era,and that it still sounds every bit as enjoyable: that says a lot for his talent and longjevity."