Top critical review
A few steps short of inspiration, unfortunately
on 28 September 2015
Somewhat disappointing solo album from the Status Quo frontman, but not a big surprise as he had been writing this type of material for Quo for quite a while now.
Judged on it's own apart from the 12-bar riffing of the band, 'One Step at a Time' is a much lighter affair. Lighter meaning more middle-of-the-road and inoffensive; for many that is exactly what they'd like from a Rossi solo album, but for many others, it can sound at times like music to be played in the background; rather than a stirring musical piece of it's own.
Some of the melodies are quite good, though mainly they are quite bland. As Francis himself has said, his true musical loves are pop and country, not rock'n'roll; thus, any of the rockers on this album sound incredibly muted. Again, nothing wrong with this if that is to your taste, but for me, hearing such homogenised guitars didn't service the rock tracks and in turn they had to stand or fall based on the melody. That's where the problem lay; the melodies, while decent, are not good enough to make this album stand out as great; it's more 'pleasant' than great. 'Pleasant' can too often be forgettable, and as a collection of music, unfortunately I do feel it's somewhat forgettable. Decent, but lacking that spark or inspiration to elevate any of the songs to something great.