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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Rock from Former Glam Rock Gods, 17 Mar 2010
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This review is from: Cut Above The Rest (Audio CD)
Sweet will always be remembered as a glam rock band, no more, no less. Yes the group enjoyed huge success in the early to mid-70s, but there was always a classic hard rock band trying to get out. Indeed some of Sweet's best material, particularly their LP output, was written "after they were famous".

"Cut Above The Rest"("CATR") came out in September 1979 over 19 months after Sweet's last album "Level Headed" whose hit single "Love Is Like Oxygen" should have seen the band re-invent themselves as classic rock gods.For some inexplicable reason "Love Is Like Oxygen" was not followed up in the UK with another single from "Level Headed". There were potential singles aplenty on "Level Headed", but the band's management or record company saw fit to commit commercial suicide and the impetus was lost.Throw in the ever so slight problem of lead singer Brian Connolly leaving the band (sadly his voice was wrecked through his well documented drink and drug problems)it was no surprise that the music press and radio ignored "CATR".

Despite mediocre reviews at the time "CATR" could easily have been a "classic" rock album, but in 1979 the music press had already dismissed Sweet as "has-beens", their teenybop fans had deserted them and the majority of the supposedly "cool" hard rock fraternity were too worried about their credibility to admit that this album was, actually, rather good !

"Call Me" and the lush ballad "Big Apple Waltz" were the obvious single releases, but both failed to re-establish Sweet in the UK charts. The guitar dominated rock cut "Play All Night", a fans' favourite, or "Mother Earth" (potentially the band's "Stairway To Heaven" or "Bohemian Rhapsody" - I kid you not) would have been bolder steps to release as 45s and may just have tipped the balance in Sweet's favour.

All 3 band members handle lead vocals and backing vocals superbly and each song is well crafted with Andy Scott's guitar breaks taking his playing into another stratosphere.

If you buy this excellently re-mastered CD expecting a "Wig Wam Bam" or a "Ballroom Blitz" you may be disappointed, but Sweet's songs like "Dorian Gray" or "Stay With Me" have enough power and melody to keep any hard rock fan happy.

If you're still not convinced "hard rock" friends and associates over the years have always enquired, if I've played them "Cut Above The Rest",'who is this band' and were/ are always surprised by the answer................!!!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars back on cd at last, 16 Feb 2010
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S. Cartlidge (uk) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cut Above The Rest (Audio CD)
This album was first released back in 1979 and was the first album without brain connolly but dont let that put you off,this album was the follow up to level headed and it has more of a progressive feel to it with many of the tracks lasting over 5 minutes long,the album opens with "call me" which was the bands first single and it has a spanish pop feel to it my favorite tracks on the album are "mother earth" and "discophony" which have great guitar and drum work on them from scott,priest and tucker,also on the album is a great balled called "hold me" which has a stunning guitar rift in the middle the album also includes 3 bonus tracks which 2 are edited singles and the other a b side "why dont you" which has some fantastic guitar work from andy scott in it.At last this album is back on cd do yourself a favour buy it and listen to some classic rock!
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A CLEVER CUT, 21 April 2005
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HIPPIE DAVE (Shelf, w.yorks United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Cut Above the Rest (Audio CD)
Recorded after the departure of lead singer Brian Connelly,(some of his vocals being re-recorded)this is an album mainly overlooked when originally released in the uk.However, from start to finish it more than proves the vocal talents of the remaining three members, listen to the very catchy 'Call me' that was released as a single,as was 'Big apple waltz',which is a very memorable ballad.There certainly is not one weak track on here,and like me I am sure once played, you would play this album again and again.I have recommended it to others who agree it is a first rate effort,and please cast aside the lack of Brian. Sheer perfection, and def a Cut above the rest.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars We want Sweet (and so did other fans), 12 Jun 2013
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Paul Gregory - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cut Above The Rest (Audio CD)
The first Sweet offering without Brian Conolly. Not too far removed from what they were doing with him on the last couple of albums. Steve and Andy had become more dominant as lead vocalists anyway, as Brian had his health and addiction problems. So it would appear, it was just a matter of each of the singing the songs that Brian would have, and an admirable job they both did. A very good po/rock album.
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5.0 out of 5 stars LITTLE HOTEL ROOM WAS SMALL SQUARE BOX 2 BEDS 4 WALLS, 19 Jan 2014
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This review is from: Cut Above The Rest (Audio CD)
Much more mature songs, very cool even. Still packs a rock punch in many places. More keyboards than before. Just wish Brian Connolly was on it, would have loved to have heard this album by the original 4pce Sweet firing on all cylinders. Still not a bad album and i was very happy when this arrived. Cheers
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4.0 out of 5 stars post Brian Connolly, but still great, 22 May 2011
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70s "arrow" (uk) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cut Above The Rest (Audio CD)
Although BC had a great voice ( well before the drink and drugs sank it), Steve Priest proves that he was more than a capable front man. tight writing and a full Sweet sound make this an essential Sweet cd. All the parts are present and correct, catchy melodies and really good playing from all. A step on from Level Headed with more consitent writing and playing, Sweet grown up.
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not the same "Mighty" Sweet without Brian Connolly, 5 Nov 2003
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This review is from: Cut Above the Rest (Audio CD)
Brian Connolly's departure from the MIGHTY SWEET was a tragic loss to a band that produced some of the best and most influential rock music in history.
The Sweet had released some of the best records throughout the 70's. Their previous release, Level Headed, was a unique album, yet very different from the band's hard rocking sound of their preceeding 4 albums. It is very sad that "The Sweet" (with Brian Connolly) did not survive after Level Headed because the potential for more incredible music made it all very exciting at the time.
Recorded in 1979, CATR is not a bad album at all, but it definitely wasn't the same thrill anymore. The Sweet were no longer the same force... the same magic and charisma anymore. The musical nucleus of the band continued with their 3 highly accomplished musicians, but they had lost their incredible frontman and their irreplaceable voice. The Sweet had arguably the best vocals of all time, and Connolly was their main man.
The original CATR LP artwork was replaced by an ugly looking pic on the CD version. By the time CATR was released, The Sweet were no longer the rebellious band they once were. CATR has actually very good songs (especially Mother Earth, Call Me and Dorian Grey), but the new Sweet sounds a little downbeat and without direction. All songs in CATR are really good, but none are superb, as in their previous releases. The 3 remaining members should have given up "The Sweet" name and changed it for STP (Scott, Tucker and Priest), as they had originally tried to do. As a special treat, drummer extraordinaire Mick Tucker is also the lead vocalist on Dorian Grey and Eye Games.
Still, CATR is a highly recommended album from a band that was one of the most influential of all time! I give this album “only 4 stars” because The Sweet’s musical legacy from their 70’s albums deserves six stars out of five.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Unlived days, 31 Oct 2014
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This review is from: Cut Above The Rest (Audio CD)
While I was a huge Sweet fan when I was young, I never had this album. Good to catch up with an unlived past. Excellent service.
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