Even as much as I like The Stranglers (and I'm obsessed with the band and have been for decades, it must be said that this is their weakest effort to date). It's quite well know that this was (in theory) the album where bassist/vocalist J.J. Burnel wrested control of much of the basic songwriting from frontman Roberts and guitarist Ellis.
Despite this, 'Coupo De Grace; is not a return to form we'd expect given JJs additional input. The album is filled with lacklustre melodies, awkward, predictable and inelegant lyrics and ultimately lacks punch. HOWEVER, it is worth buying for one track alone, the excellent 'In The End', which features a sterling burnel vocal and lyric, lovely keyboards and reflective acoustic guitar: now if the rest of the album were like this, 'Coup De Grace' would have been the bext album by the band since 'Dreamtime'- the number has all the misanthropy, romanticism, regret and bleakness we love to hear from JJ at his best. So despite my negative comments, if you love The Stranglers, you'll dig this one great track if not the album.