on 3 March 2006
These are the two albums by chic that came as discos star went out and Nile and Nard moved onto other things. Real people was a massive reversal in fortunes for the group as a follow up to Risque. It's not a bad work, with 26 being a outstanding fun track. The follow up Tongue in Chic is a masterpiece. Hangin was an almost ran, making it just just out of the top 40 in the UK, but the follow track, I Feel your love comin' on' is a track of almost impossible greatness. An almost funky track with Nards vocals coming out well, it might have few words, but they come out well. Other tracks are good, but this is one of Chics standout tracks. These albums shows that they were not just disco drones but moved with the times. It's a pity the times closed their ears.
on 24 December 2007
A good value CD with two very different individual albums. The originally much derided "Real people" is worth a second listening. Yes, it was seen as negative and cynical, but the songs were true for the times... post- disco exploitation of artists frankly sick of being used. "Open up" is a cool jazzy instrumental followed by "Real People", the title track, a mid-tempo chunky tune, not quite fast enough to dance to, singing about wanting to be away from those nasty music sven-ghalis. "I loved you more" a sweet painful ballad beautifully sung. "I got protection"... what a fun tune, and what a put-down if you were at the receiving end of this song... excellent! "Rebels are we" was the nearest thing to a hit from this album, but barely charted. It was chunky and typically "Chic" modular form. I love "Chip of the old block". Its such an anthem to those who just can't help themselves... and have a family history of "misbehaving"...Ha! such a gem of a song. "26", wierd, but strangely good. A lesson in good behaviour & trust! "You can't do it alone" has Fonzi Thornton giving a rare solo. This is a diamond of a song, swinging and painful in sentiment. Offering a second chance to the lover who just doesn't know what she wants... a really good song with a great tune.A great album in my view. "Tongue in Chic" is a bit 80's, and feels somewhat dated. The cover fashions says it all. Gone are the smart "Suits and dresses" of the previous chic albums, in comes dayglo tat. YUK! There are, however, a few gems to this album. "I feel your love coming on" is great... not many words, repetitive but a smashing tune. "When you love someone" is an optomistic love ballad, that breaks ito a funky climax. Hey fool is old-style album chic. My favourate on this album is "sharing love". A wonderful, typical chic mid-tempo tune, as good as any they have made. At 2 minutes 42 seconds long, it is at least 3 minutes too short. It is a beautiful classical chic tune, and the disc is worth buying for this tune alone. City lights ends the double album with a great instrumental, again, to the highest standands of chic. In summary, I like "Real People". A good solid chic album... a bit moody, but who isn't sometimes. It has its lighter moments and some of the lyrics make me chuckle. "Tongue" is less well presented, but has some star quality. A good value CD!
on 17 May 2002
As a big Chic fan I must say that this album is probably their weakest. Nothing on this record sounds the way it should or could have sounded. Track one is an attempt to sound like the slick funk acts that were around at those times (1982)- Rick James for example. So what happened to the "Chic- sound"? There are no strings here and no female lead vocalists. Instead, Nile 'n' Nard sing the song and Alfa Anderson and Luci Martin are so far in the background that it could be anyone. Plus- the song itself isn't that great. Track two, "I Feel Your Love Comin' On" is simply boring. Again, the two female singers are reduced to do the background vocals and this is the point where you start to wonder why those powerful voices are not used. The song itself doesn't quite live up to anything Chic have done so far. Although repetition was always a trademark of Chic ("My feet keep dancin, dancin'/ my feet keep dancin, dancin'"...) in this case the song is far to long- like a mantra Edwards repeats the chorus again and angain and again. That's okay when the song is good but in this case it's unnerving. Then, on the third track "When You Love Someone" everything that's good about Chic, can be found. Strong female vocals, Rodgers heavy guitar playing, piano and a great bass. The sad ballad turns into a funky dance song towards the end and leaves the listener hoping for more of that stuff to come- but the next track "Chic (Everybody say)" is a weak copy of the "Chic Cheer" from the "C'est Chic"- album- complete with live effects, applause and so on. Only thing is- it's not half as good- and again no female lead singers. The next track "Hey Fool" is a pleasant mid- tempo number, but nothing special-- and only the second track sung by a female member of Chic. "Sharing love" sounds almost like a rehash of "Soup For One" and the closing number "City Lights" is a nice instrumental but nowhere near as good as the bouncy and funky "Baby Doll" on the previous album "Take It Off". This album is a dissapointment to any Chic- fan. Only two songs for Alfa and Luci, the rest of the material is quite average and the instrumentation is boring. Chic were searaching for a new style but haven't found it. It seems they were tired of the old Chic sound but had little else to offer. A big minus as well is the "length" of this album- an approximate 32 minutes is far too short- even in the times of the good old vinyl. This only strengthens the impression that Chic weren't inspired and wanted to get the album done as fast as they could. For any new fans who want to know more about the twighlight years of the group- you better turn to "Take It Off" or "Real People"
Despite getting two complete albums on one cd here, sadly this time what you also get are two very poor albums.
The first 'Real People' came out at a time when Rodgers and Edwards were probably the most in demand writers and producers in the R&B world. Maybe its not surprising then that things sound rather tired and forced and 'Real People' still stands as one of the finest examples of songwriters 'giving away' their best songs. Nothing on the record has the spark of earlier classics like 'I Want Your Love', 'Good Times' or 'Le Freak' and the arrangements are stiff and lurching instead of rythmic and flowing like before. Sadly, things are even worse on 'Tongue In Chic' which is quite simply the worst record the band ever made. All you get for your money here is frustration as most of the songs struggle to get out of first gear. Single 'Hangin' is the best of a very poor bunch and does at least feature a nice guitar riff from Nile. 'City Lights' is the funkiest of the other tracks and 'When You Love Someone' shows glimpses of the old magic but the rest of the album is simply dull and totally uninspired (check out the ABYSMAL 'Chic (Everybody Say)'). Don't waste your money.