Weak album? Well, I bought it at a sale some 30 years ago and quickly played it to smithereens (forcing me to buy a second copy). It's got a playful, unpretentious quality, and lots of equally contagious and quirky pop-tunes. I made my own LP-to-CD transfer years ago - great it's finally out on CD (bought it the other minute)!
I've never understood what the criticism was about. This is a humourous look on life, in a musically very varied and melodious setting. To be justly compared with such acts as Jonathan Richman and the Modern Lovers of the late 70s/early 80s with all of their charming naiveté, or the Steely Dan of the mid-70s, before that group got their creative talents drowned in their search for the perfect sound. Or the odd but very catchy neo-punk attitude of French les Rita Mitsouko - remember, Sparks and "Rita" collaborated around 1990.
Now a new generation of listeners can discover what Joan of Arc and Eva Braun have in common, the up-tempo, cheeky "I'm Not", the brilliant Beach Boys pastiche "Over the Summer" and all the melancholy of "Those Mysteries". Plus the rest - it's a very varied song collection and a should be a must for anyone enjoying Sparks, old and new. And to me, it beats "Kimono My House" any day. That landmark from 1974 had its highs and lows, the lows of which I cannot find here. Enjoy!