Jools among tortoises,
This review is from: Frank : Expanded Reissue (Audio CD)
This album gets a four-star rating because of all the hard work that's been put into it, including the bonus tracks, of which "Who's That" and "Good Times" are the obvious stand-outs.
Squeeze have toned down the production on this album, letting their musicianship shine through - especially, perhaps, that of Jools Holland, his last outing (to date) with the band. In fact, in many ways, this is Jools' Squeeze album, his piano contributions giving unmistakeable, idiosyncratic character to the melodies provided by Glenn Tilbrook. It sounds, in places, as though it was Jools Holland's piano influence that shaped a lot of the melodies here.
There isn't a single poor song on this album. But while there's a whole lot of good songs here, and although the band do what they do best throughout the album - that is, perform as an ensemble, playing their pants off, with harmonies, cross-singing and important contributions all round - there aren't actually any tracks you could pick out as highlights of their long musical career. I do think that this album holds together as coherent piece, and they're clearly enjoying themselves here, but it sounds somehow empty. I get the feeling that a touch more production wouldn't have done Frank any harm at all.
I've bought Frank twice now - once when it first came out on wax cylinder, and then the CD version. I occasionally play it, but it's never the first one I go to when I fancy a bit of Squeeze. A friend of mine told me, years ago, "Oh, you like Squeeze? I have one of their albums - Frank", and I felt a little worried that he wouldn't rate the band as highly as I thought (and still think) they deserved.
If you're looking for Jools Holland before his current incarnation, this is a fine place to start your collection. If you have a Squeeze album and are thinking of buying another, this isn't a bad choice. It's better than "Squeeze", it's better than "Sweets From A Stranger", it's better than "Cosi Fan Tutti Frutti" and it's better than "Domino". But if there are others I haven't mentioned out there that you still haven't got, you might want to consider investing in one of those first. You won't be disappointed with "Frank", but I think there are other Squeeze albums you'll enjoy more.
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 4 Oct 2009 19:28:43 BDT
Mr. Christopher J. Welch says:
This is one of the most underated albums in Squeeze's history. Maybe it's because it's very simple and a lot less polished then Babylon and on that it hasn't dated as badly. MY fav is still Some Fantastic Place. Saw them last year and they were still fantastic live. New album apparently due early 2010.
Posted on 14 Oct 2012 11:07:49 BDT
Empty! The last word I`d use to describe this full-to-overflowing joyride.
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